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The History and future of Marketing Attribution

The History And Future Of Marketing Attribution

Marketing assignment refers to detecting particular acts that someone is doing to learn about your company and order your product or service. This is how advertisers measure the importance of different outlets. Or activities that contributed to the conversion. We give you the history and future of marketing attribution.

Marketing assignment models have been used for many decades, but as consumers’ needs have shifted, and businesses have experienced digital changes, marketing assignment has evolved. Today, sales are made or lost with a mouse, so there is evidence that attribution models need to meet the digital environment’s complexities. What succeeded 30 years ago could be short-lived today. That doesn’t mean that the pre-internet period techniques are no longer useful.

Keep reading for a short history of marketing assignment, various types used now, and where they could be used.

Marketing Attribution in the Offline World

The origins of the marketing mix models (MMMs) can be traced back to the 1950s. This method became popular in the 1980s when it provided cross-channel representation of all media forms used to support conversions.

MMMs have become a valuable method, mainly due to the shortage of suitable substitutes. Today, these older models of assignment fall behind in the modern world. Advertisers who still rely on them are losing useful knowledge and insights.

MMMs are often too sluggish for the online world, frequently producing results weeks after the initiative has been finished, rather than within one. They still do a terrible job of evaluating brand value. They ften contributing to over-spending on events at the bottom of the funnel and under-spending when it comes to brand growth for those who need more incentive to take action.

These and other limitations render the MMM model ineffective, particularly for organizations that have yet to initiate digital transformation.

Fortunately, the transition to the modern world has equipped advertisers with resources and strategies that have revitalized campaign assignment models, making it easier to follow every aspect of the customer’s path. It is not frequently that the buyer visits a web address and makes an order, so many different task models are used to ensure multi-channel marketing effectiveness.

Different Digital Attribution Models

Your company will work with several marketing task types based on priorities, business model, finances, and more. There are a variety of choices that can be used, such as:

Single Source Attribution

The single-source marketing assignment grants a conversion credit to a single touchpoint, usually the first or last touch. For the first contact task, all credit goes to the very first medium that the lead interacted with, whether it was an internet ad, a landing page, or a downloadable resource.

This assignment method is easy to enforce but fails to allow for any connection that the client might have with the business since the initial first contact, which would affect any other medium’s perceived importance. Last touch attribution provides credit to the final touchpoint before the sale. While it is still easy to trace, it has the same problems as the first touch attribution, as it does not consider any other outlets that may have contributed.

Multi-Source Attribution

For a multi-source or multi-touch assignment, each platform contributing to the final sale shall have due credit. This approach provides a much more complete view of the distribution process, but it also does not allow how much each channel ultimately contributed to the final sale. An example of a multi-source assignment will be an initial PPC ad that leads to a landing page, then an email form in return for a free ebook, a webinar, and then a final sale.

There are six multi-source task templates that you can use in your digital marketing. They shall include:


This is the most simple model, giving fair credit to any point of contact in the campaign.

Time Decay 

This approach is also used for extended sales periods and provides the brunt of the credit to touchpoints that have happened later in the process. It would usually underestimate events that have taken place previously, which are expected to have little effect on the outcome.


 This multi-source allocation method would assign credit to two different touchpoints; first touch and then lead formation. Usually, you’d be giving 40 percent of the credit to the first touch, 40 percent to show the building, and you’d be splitting the last 20 percent between the touchpoints that occurred in between.


This model follows a U-shaped model but has an additional contact point, developing a chance. Each contact has 30 percent of the credit in the W-shaped model, while the other touches share the remaining 10 percent.

Full Path 

The top route model carries on and expands on the W-shaped model, including the final close. Most of the credit is allocated to the customer’s trip’s main touchpoints, with a smaller weight given to the different touches in between. This model’s significant advantage is that experiences are given the same weight as marketing efforts in the early stages after the sales staff’s fact.


This is potentially the most sophisticated multi-source allocation model. It helps the marketing team assess the importance and credit granted to each touchpoint based on the various marketing platforms used in the campaign, the purchaser’s actions, and the industry.

Weighted Multi-Source Attribution – A-weighted multi-source allocation model helps you consider all the transactions that have taken place during the overall sales cycle and assign a unique weight to those touchpoints that have had the most effects. This model will give you the most detailed view of the consumer journey: which aspects work and which stages require change. But it can be a challenge to implement successfully.

Choosing a Marketing Attribution Model

Choosing which marketing allocation model to use can be a fiercely contested subject in every marketing department. A specific model’s effectiveness depends on the priorities, principles, expenditure, and scale of the business, the market, the resources used, and how far you have come with the digital transformation.

Trial and error and experimentation can play a significant role in finally agreeing on a campaign assignment model. Since you can compare and match, giving credit where it should be given for the best possible result. It is necessary to bear in mind that the allocation will be distributed to such outlets with the highest expected importance, making sense to get it right.

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