Multi-Touch Attribution vs. Purpose-Built Tools

Do I need a Purpose-Built MTA Tool or can I use Multi-Touch Attribution?

The majority of marketers will attempt to use some form of Multi-Touch Attribution analysis in 2016. Once you’ve decided that MTA is right for you, the next step is choosing how to tackle a Multi-Touch Attribution project. Ask yourself these questions first:


  1. Should my analysis include marketing automation efforts?
  2. Who will perform the analysis?
  3. What is our internal level of expertise in statistical analysis?
  4. Who is the audience reviewing the data?
  5. Do I want to use my own custom model or a proven one?


The answers to these questions can largely impact the decision of whether to use standard functionality, export all of that salesforce and marketing automation data for SQL analysis, or invest in a purpose-built tool that can make MTA as easy as plug and play.


Salesforce Standard Functionality:  

There are a few different campaign influence reports available in, each with their own nuances, that are helpful in getting started with MTA. Understanding these nuances begins to expose some of the limitations of MTA with First, campaign influence reports can be done two ways. An ROI report at the campaign level will only treat PRIMARY campaigns as influential toward marketing ROI. This means that of all the campaigns an opportunity can participate in, one must be designated primary to get the full serving of ROI credit. A more general opportunities with campaign influence report can show you all of the campaigns that an opportunity participated in, but only if the contacts in the campaigns have been added to the opportunity. And, they cannot be presented in any order of a specific attribution model such as time decay or u-shaped modeling.


For those who have a small, limited team with a wealth of information in campaigns, this might be the best option for getting started. Typically those using influence reporting cannot integrate their marketing automation data.


Exporting The Data for Analysis: data becomes the most pliable when it is exported for deeper analysis. If your team has resources for heavy lifting of data analysis in tools such as SQL, all data could be exported and manipulated manually. An API feed could be setup to pull data from the CRM into custom spreadsheets where models are made manually. You’ll need a team member that is well-versed in statistical analysis and architecture. Once the data has been exported, your team can create your own custom model that assigns influence to any contact at the account with successful opportunities. This is a good way to get around some of the limitations in the UI such as choosing only 1 primary campaign. If a full data warehouse is available, your team might be able to set up jobs that send marketing automation data to the same environment for reporting.


This method of analysis often requires a full-time data scientist who can also manipulate reports to be understood by members of the selling organization. It’s most successful to use these complex, excel reports for internal marketing audiences only. Taking reports out of the CRM often raises questions about the data and its validity that your team will need to be prepared to answer.


Adopting a Purpose-Built Tool for the Marketing Touch Data Stack:

For those teams getting started in MTA who don’t have a full-time data scientist, a native tool that peforms dynamic Multi-Touch Analysis across the entire data stack focused on marketing automation may be the way to go. If you are a Pardot user for instance, upon setup and integration with AttributeApp a nightly batch job runs and marries your marketing automation and data.  From there marketers can access out of the box MTA reports, drill into data, create different views/filters, and customize based on their specific customer and prospect research and buying behavior. Marketing automation touch points such as web behavior or lead nurturing programs can be seen in the context of the account-based analysis.


Native tools are ideal for those who want to present reports inside of the CRM to their leadership or sales teams. AttributeApp arrives on day one ready to leverage proven MTA models such as the u-shaped attribution model, with the flexibility to create a custom model of your choosing. All contacts at the account can be included, or you can limit to include primary and secondary opportunity contacts.


Reports are easily segmented based on varying stages of opportunities, which can change at a moment’s notice. Rather than waiting for data to be exported, worked with, reported and analyzed, your AttributeApp reports update frequently based on a fast-moving sales team. The best part? Proven, statistically relevant reports are available out-of-the-box the moment you get started. Go beyond the limitations of Salesforce without earning your PHD in stats.


A purpose-built MTA solution is ideal for marketers who want to dive in and get started quickly with MTA focused on their marketing touch data stack created by marketing automation efforts. Contact us today to find out how easy it is to get started!

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