Getting Started with Multi-Touch Attribution: To-Do List

Before getting started with multi-touch attribution, many marketers are intimidated or daunted by the idea of “cleaning up” their database. This is true for even the most sophisticated of programs; no dataset is perfect. The AttributeApp team has worked with many groups over time and we’ve learned that data quality is a journey — not a destination. By implementing the right processes and tools, you can begin multi-touch attribution without having to restart your database. Often times, the data revealed in your MTA program will help inform your perspective about new processes to help keep your data in good condition.

So, if you don’t have to overhaul the entire database to start measuring your marketing data stack in a more sophisticated way, what is required to start off on the right foot? Read on below to see our top recommendations.

Get cross-functional buy in  

The most common key stakeholders of MTA Analysis are marketing leadership, sales, and finance. Before getting started with Multi-Touch Attribution, get the input of these 3 core voices. Be inquisitive and make sure you understand which questions they would like to have answered. Your program is sure to get the support it needs if it is aimed at answering the right questions for the business.

There’s a chance that you’ll need outside support of a 3rd party tool or resource to really get to the bottom of your investigation. When requesting funds for the project, make sure you remind stakeholders of their previous buy-in and reiterate how you’ll be adding to the bottom line by informing marketing decisions with more horsepower and insight than ever before.

Harmonize your databases

If data quality is a journey, you need to start off by making sure everyone is in the same car, driving down the same highway. Many marketers use multiple systems to create and record marketing data. Various systems for CRM, web analytics, and marketing automation are the backbone of your dataset. It’s important to make sure all of the systems are integrated and talking to each other so that your data is ultimately getting back to the CRM. You don’t want to have leads in the CRM that are not in the marketing automation database. Then, map all fields possible between the CRM and marketing automation tool. Harmonize the data across both tools and make sure you’ve carefully chosen how those fields get updated and which dataset is the master. This will help down the road, knowing that you are evaluating one set of information. Also consider Salesforce Data Quality Solutions for Marketers to clean up CRM data.

Clean up scoring and grading

If you’re using marketing automation such as Pardot, a score and grade are available to you in efforts to evaluate the quality of your prospects. We suggest taking a look at how these are running and making some tweaks to improve them if necessary. Once you dive into your MTA analysis, you’ll be making findings about which marketing campaigns work, and when they work. After you make determinations and start changing your campaigns, lead score and lead grade are two ways to evaluate a “before and after” to see if your changes are making an impact in the marketing funnel. Other good diagnostics are close rate, opportunity age, and average deal size, all of which should improve when you are doing better marketing.

Determine how your company will use campaigns

Marketing campaigns are the backbone of attribution analysis. Make sure you have set the strategy for how you want your team to use campaigns because this will feed the data that is analyzed in your MTA tool. Some things to keep in mind:

  • If you use Pardot, remember that the Pardot campaign is an indication of the “first touch” campaign. Each Pardot prospect has one campaign assigned to them.
  • The Pardot campaign can be changed — make a decision about whether you want the campaign to serve as first touch or if you would like to change the campaign based on certain behaviors. If you do want to change it, use automation rules or completion actions to do this.
  • Salesforce.com campaigns have a many-to-many relationship with leads and contacts. Each prospect can be a part of many campaigns. For this reason, many marketers use both Pardot and salesforce.com campaigns to tell the full story.
  • Pay attention to the way your campaigns are named. This will make reports easier to read and digest. Don’t be afraid to rename campaigns that were set up with a confusing title. Set a standard, and enforce it.

Ultimately, and most importantly, getting started with Multi-Touch Attribution requires an open mind and a willingness to set aside some of your previous assumptions. You may find that your most tried and true marketing campaigns don’t move the needle quite as much as you thought, and discover new programs that are making a huge impact which previously flew under the radar.