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10 Things You Should Know as CMO in 2021

As a CMO, there are a number of things that you need to be in charge of, especially when it comes to marketing. You have to know which campaign or channel is most effective and encourages conversions. For a long time, this has been arbitrarily determined. Now you have marketing attribution to show you how well online marketing and other offline tactics are working. With attribution modeling, you can decide which of the touch-points stays, which goes, which needs a larger budgetary allocation and so on.


When it comes to attribution modeling, every Chief Marketing Officer must know the following things:

1.   Marketing to Sales Process

Your marketing to sales process determines the attribution model that you’re going to use. Some people only have one or two touch-points in their customer’s decision journey. Others have multiple touch-points. The rule of thumb is that the model becomes more complex the more the touch-points you have along the customer’s journey. For example, if you only focus on online marketing through pay per click and Facebook ads, you can easily use the first or last touch models.

2.   It’s Not Complicated

Attribution modeling scares many marketers. Once they see how data-driven models work, it all feels very complicated. The truth is that the process doesn’t have to be hard. With attribution marketing, you can start with what you have. The little data you gather on your computer is a good place to start. For example, data on the number of clicks from an ad shows you how many people who end up buying the product, downloading or installing an app have clicked on the ad. This is a good and simple place to start. You can therefore build your model on this.

3.   It Doesn’t Have to be Expensive

Attribution modeling doesn’t have to be expensive. If you have looked at various attribution models and the cost of implementation, you might have a challenge justifying the high initial cost to your superiors. You don’t have to go straight to the most complex models. In fact you can start with the cheap and free simple models such as the position-based models. These include the W-shaped and U-shaped models. This is especially important for those with simpler marketing to sales processes.

4.   Involve Everyone

Marketing attribution isn’t just about the marketing team. As the CMO, you have to think about how your department interacts with others. For example, the finance department controls the money while the IT department will need to come in the more complex the model is. Let information flow freely within all the arms so that the attribution model can work best.

5.   Online to Offline Attribution

Focus on the online to offline attribution. There are various touch-points. For example, online marketing deals with the digital sphere. A customer may have seen an online advertisement but decided to make a purchase from the physical shop or outlet. Your model should account for such things.

6.   Multi-device Attribution

Cross-device attribution is an increasing concern, especially when it comes to mobile phones and other smart gadgets. When choosing an attribution model, you should account for this as well.

7.   Avoid Multiplicity

It isn’t uncommon to have multiplicity in marketing silos. A click from an ad on a social media site could be recorded under social media as well as ad-generated sales. Streamlining the classification to avoid multiplicity will yield more accurate results and therefore allow you to optimize your marketing process.

8.   Always Test

Attribution modeling doesn’t happen sporadically. You need to start with a hypothesis, having assigned values to your marketing channels or campaigns. Once you have data on the customer’s journey, you can then test this hypothesis to prove or refute it. After this, it is tweaked to better represent the real life situation. This continues over time until you can confidently pick a model that assigns certain values to each touch-point.

9.   It’s a Continuous Process

When you get an attribution model to work, this isn’t the end. You shouldn’t use it as is forever. With data-backed models such as the algorithmic model, you can reevaluate the part that each touch-point plays within the customer’s journey. With this information, you can optimize the marketing process and budget at any given time in order to maximize on revenue.

10.   Consider Lifetime Value

One thing that most Chief Marketing Officers miss out on is the lifetime value of the customer. When a customer buys an application, for example, you must still monitor the in-app purchases that they make until they uninstall or stop using the application. The return purchases, also known as the lifetime value, should drive your decisions more than the first purchase. The attribution marketing model that you choose for this must provide for this.


With these tips, every CMO will be able to come up with a great attribution model that works. You do not have to adopt what everyone else is using if it doesn’t increase your revenue at the end of the day.


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