Multi-Touch Attribution and Models: A Complete Guide

Today’s buyer’s journey involves a series of interactions across different touchpoints and channels. There is rarely a sales conversion based on a single interaction.

Conversions and sales often result from a mix of interactions from a variety of sources such as blog articles, social media posts, webinars, in-person events, conversations with representatives, content on your website, email marketing campaigns, and much more. All of these touchpoints help your customers convert.

Attribution allows you to credit conversions for these marketing touchpoints and channels throughout the buyer’s journey. The multi-touch mapping goes one step further.

Multi-touch mapping

In this blog post we cover the definition of multi-touch attribution, what sets it apart from other attribution types, as well as multi-touch attribution models. Let’s begin.

What is multi-touch mapping?

With multi-touch mapping, which can also be referred to as broken mapping, you determine the value of each touch point throughout the entire customer journey that leads to a conversion.

In other words, it’s when every touchpoint a customer has experienced throughout the buyer’s journey is credited for a conversion.

Why is multi-touch mapping important?

The reason why multi-touch mapping is so important is so that you can determine all of the channels that are contributing to a conversion, and which of those channels will have the greatest impact on a conversion. You get a clear picture of how your channels and touchpoints affect each conversion.

This is valuable information that you can use to improve these touchpoints for future prospects to improve the customer experience and the buyer’s journey. It shows you exactly how different touchpoints and channels work together to influence business on an individual level.

You can also use this information to better understand what is most important to your target audience throughout the buyer’s journey and which aspects of the customer experience are most influential in decision-making.

You may have heard of other types of attribution, such as: B. from the first and the last contact. Let’s talk about what makes multi-touch mapping unique next.

Multi-touch attribution vs. first-touch attribution vs. last-touch attribution

Multi-touch mapping differs from first-touch and last-touch mapping because no conversion is mapped to the first or last marketing touchpoint a customer has before the conversion.

Suppose a HubSpot customer read a blog post, participated in INBOUND, interacted with a social media post, and then became a customer.

The first-touch assignment would lead to the conclusion that the blog post that the customer has read receives the credit for its conversion, while the last-touch assignment gives the credit for the social media post with that he has interacted with. In the meantime, the multi-touch assignment would take into account all of these touchpoints and assign a credit to each of them.

That said, the multi-touch mapping is unique in that it takes into account all touchpoints and then assigns a credit to each of those touchpoints based on the impact a customer’s decision to convert had. First and last touch assignment – which can also be referred to as single touch assignment – not. These methods feel a little dated compared to multi-touch assignment because they don’t take into account the many touchpoints and channels that prospects and customers can connect.

Multi-touch attribution model

With a multi-touch attribution model, you determine which of your customer contact points are most important on the buyer’s path. There are several multi-touch attribution models to weigh the touchpoints in the order of their influence throughout the buyer’s journey.

Multi-touch attribution models

There are a number of attribution models that you can use to determine which touchpoints are most important in the buyer’s journey. Different multi-touch attribution models weigh the different touchpoints in different ways.

Here are four of the most common multi-touch attribution models to get you started.

1. Linear assignment

A linear attribution model, also known as an equal weighting attribution model, provides equal recognition for conversion at every touchpoint in the buyer’s journey. This can be considered the “standard” when it comes to multi-touch attribution models.

Who should use linear mapping?

Linear mapping is great if your prospects are often in the viewing phase of the buyer’s journey for an extended period of time as it shows you the impact all of your content and messages have during that lengthy phase.

It’s also ideal if you want to know how your touchpoints work together to influence a deal, or if you’re new to multi-touch assignment and don’t have a basic understanding of how your touchpoints behave with your audience .

2. Time Decay Attribution

A time-decay attribution model is when you organize your touchpoints based on their percentage impact on a conversion so that the least influential touchpoint (with the lowest percentage) comes first and the most influential touchpoint (with the highest percentage) comes last.

Who should use time expiration mapping?

Time-lapse mapping is ideal when you’re measuring the success of short-term touchpoints such as campaigns.

3. U-shaped assignment

A U-shaped attribution model, also known as a bathtub model, gives the first and last touchpoints a higher percentage of credit in the buyer’s journey than the middle touchpoints.

Who should use a U-shaped write-up?

The U-shaped mapping is ideal when your team wants to focus on the impact of the first and last of your multiple touchpoints. There is less emphasis on touchpoints that support the middle stages of the buyer’s journey.

4. W-shaped assignment

The W-shaped multi-touch mapping takes into account the first and last points of contact on the buyer’s journey, as well as the points of contact that occur in the middle of the buyer’s journey. The same credit is then allocated to all remaining contact points.

Who should use a w-shaped write-up?

The W-shaped mapping is helpful when you want to understand which touchpoints are actually converting leads, but also want to identify the touchpoints that encourage customers to engage and keep moving down the buyer’s path.

In addition to the four multi-touch attribution models mentioned above, you can customize your multi-touch attribution model using the attribution software.

Multi-touch attribution software – like Wicked Reports – can make it easy to identify the successful or failed marketing touchpoints among your prospects.

Example of bad report marketing attribution software

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Wicked Reports gives you a complete picture of how customers interact with your brand and allows you to track inbound clicks based on your CRM and sales data, so you can identify the most important clicks related to your team’s unique marketing goals.

Pro tip: Integrate Wicked Reports seamlessly into your HubSpot CRM platform.

Use the multi-touch mapping

Multi-touch mapping is a powerful process that marketers can use to identify the various factors that influenced a buying decision for a customer. It also helps marketers understand which of these factors influenced their decision the most.

This information can be used to improve the buyer’s journey and the marketing content and communications shared in it, and to understand what is most important to your company’s unique prospects when making a purchase decision.

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