What’s The Best Multiscreen Attribution Study? It Depends On Your Campaign Goals.

On TV And Video” is a column exploring opportunities and challenges in advanced TV and video.

Today’s column is written by Sona Pehlivanian, VP of addressable campaign management and operations at New York Interconnect. 

As TV and video viewership fractures across platforms, channels and devices, marketers are shifting their TV buying plans to account for new viewer behaviors.

Yet, marketers still aren’t sure how to measure “success” in a TV landscape that’s unrecognizable from even a few years ago.

But multiscreen attribution is a moving target, dependent on shifting industry collaborations and technology platforms. And because there is no single right path to getting a cross-screen understanding of a campaign’s impact, there are multiple ways to handle multiscreen attribution, from straight sales conversion to brand health studies.

Your objective, budget and target size will drive the right type of study or mix of studies. And your product will determine the study design and appropriate conversion window.

Here are some common brand scenarios to guide your attribution strategy development.

Top-funnel goals

TV advertisers are no stranger to top-funnel considerations, given that the world of TV attribution once focused almost exclusively on brand and awareness metrics. For brands working in the top of the funnel, these brand health studies are still valid, and their learnings extend to (and even deepen) when you layer addressable, OTT and VOD inventory on top of traditional linear inventory.

Consider a paid content company that was trying to figure out who it should be targeting and where it sits within the crowded streaming subscription space. In conjunction with a multiscreen campaign, the company employed a brand health study to measure awareness, consumer perceptions of its brand and ultimately brand consideration.

The study helped the company determine where it ranked among other content providers in the category, as well as the viewing habits of its target consumer and who its audience really is. The study also revealed high interest among a demographic that was originally going to be excluded from its media spending, helping to inform future campaigns that will drive awareness and later shift to driving subscriptions.

Measuring sales

 Addressable, OTT and VOD inventory have brought new targeting and attribution capabilities to TV, thus creating a deeper understanding of how TV drives sales.

If you’re looking to track sales associated with your multiscreen campaigns, you first need to decide whether you’re targeting current customers, lapsed customers, non-customers or some combination of the three. That will determine who you’re monitoring post-campaign.

For example, a CPG company wanted to invigorate one of its health drinks through a multiscreen campaign. It targeted lapsed customers, people interested in related categories and customers interested in a healthy lifestyle.

Post-campaign, the company measured return customers and acquisitions from other healthy drink categories. Importantly, the company also measured unit sales, revenue, purchase trips at a household level and repeat purchasers, in addition to conducting a basket analysis.

Driving more visits from current customers

If you want current customers to visit your locations more often, you’ll want to target your multiscreen campaign to customers who are moderate or light visitors and then look to capture data on incremental visits.

For example, a clothing retailer wanted to increase store visits and understand its customers’ shopping habits. The brand used first-party data for targeting and added location data to observe visitation rates, dwell time and where else the customers shopped.

The data showed a post-campaign 27% lift in incremental visits to the retailer’s stores. Other rich insights, including customer shopping habits as well as a demographic, lifestyle and interests information. The analysis revealed the stores with the most visits, how far consumers were willing to drive, on which days of the week, and which other stores the consumers visited both before and after.

This information is being used to guide the brand’s target audience for future campaigns.

Conquesting from competitors

If you are looking to conquest from competitors through a multiscreen campaign, you’ll want to target consumers who made purchases from or visits to competitive brands. This is an essential but challenging strategy particularly within the auto industry, where car buyers tend to be brand-loyal and hard to convert.

Recently, an auto brand sought to conquest for a specific class of car. Using both a location study and a sales lift analysis, the company saw how its multiscreen ads drove consumers to its own showrooms, which competitors’ showrooms those people also visited, and when and where they ultimately made a purchase.

This multifaceted analysis helped the brand see whether it successfully drove interest, and whether that interest generated sales. The brand also gauged sales lift and identified which conversions came from competing brands. It also understood which other models those who saw the ads actually bought.

Driving downloads or website visits 

To attract website visitors or app downloads, you’ll want to promote that desired action strongly in your creative and then use a web pixel study to see who converted.

Consider online gaming, where multiscreen campaign ads often include offers of free credits to encourage a download and trial play. By dropping a pixel on their sites or apps, online gaming companies can get a good read on the conversion rate from various media – both TV and digital. This insight lets companies connect exposures, and focus their spend to encourage brand loyalty.

As with targeting, the tactics you use for a multiscreen attribution strategy depends on the campaign goals. For brands that are wading deeper into multiscreen TV marketing, it’s important not to be daunted by the back-end question of attribution. Start with your goals, understand the opportunity, choose your partners wisely – and the rest will follow.

Follow Sona Pehlivanian (@NYInterconnect) and AdExchanger (@adexchanger) on Twitter.