Click Only Attribution & the Death of Common Sense


Back in May, I wrote a blog post documenting the top 10 alternatives to “Last Touch” attribution. Last touch is the common practice of awarding credit for an online conversion to the last advertising vendor to put an impression in front of a user before that user returns to a website and converts.

This methodology for awarding credit to a display vendor is very common, often manipulated and highly illogical. I wish I could say that the absence of common sense begins and ends with “last touch,” but, alas, it gets worse.

Very often, direct brand and agency contacts buying display media will make a certain statement that defies all reasonable logic; and, if you are a sales professional in the online display ecosystem, you’ve probably heard it plenty of times:

“I Don’t Believe In The View-Through”

A “view-through,” also referred to as a “post-impression” conversion, is when a consumer takes an action as a result of being shown a display ad, but does not click on the ad itself.

Unfortunately in 2013, I personally will speak with hundreds of media buying professionals and will encounter many individuals who claim they don’t believe a display ad influences an action if the ad is not clicked on. They believe in click only attribution. Loosely translated, there are thousands of professionals in the marketing industry who are saying they don’t believe human beings can be influenced to take an action as a result of something viewed with their eyes.Graph for fur coat interest

There have been studies dating back more than three years that have validated the view-through phenomenon. In fact, these studies have shown that display ads do more than create return visitors to your website who convert. Display ads also influence actions taken via other online channels such as search marketing and social media.

Display advertising helps create demand; search marketing and social media can help capture that demand.

Read the full article here