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    What is MTA? A Beginner’s Guide to Multi-Touch Attribution [2024]

    Marketing AnalyticsReporting and AnalyticsReporting Tools

    In this ever-changing marketing landscape, it’s essential to measure the impact of different touchpoints along the customer journey accurately. That’s where Multi-Touch Attribution (MTA) comes into play! It’s a powerful tool that provides marketers like you with a holistic view of your customer’s journey, helping you optimize your marketing strategies and drive conversions like a pro!

    Picture this: You’re playing a treasure hunt game with your friends. To find the hidden treasure, you must follow a path with various clues like signs or maps along the way. MTA is like your special treasure hunt tool. Instead of just focusing on the last clue you found, MTA looks at all the clues or steps that led you to the treasure. It helps you understand which clues were the most helpful in guiding you to the treasure (or in the marketing world, making people buy something).

    Table of Contents

    Understanding Multi-Touch Attribution

    MTA is an advanced approach that considers the contributions of multiple touchpoints in a customer’s journey. Instead of relying on a single hero, it recognizes the dynamic interplay between various channels, revealing the true essence of your customer’s experience with your brand. By analyzing these touchpoints, you’ll unlock valuable insights into the effectiveness of your marketing efforts – it’s like discovering hidden treasures for your strategy.

    Marketing Mix Modeling (MMM) vs. Multi-Touch Attribution (MTA)

    If you are familiar with Marketing Mix Modeling, or MMM, you probably wonder about the differences between Marketing Mix Modeling and Multi-Touch Attribution. Actually, these are two distinct methods used to study marketing effectiveness. MMM takes a broader view, analyzing various factors to understand their impact on the overall success of a business. On the other hand, MTA focuses on individual customer interactions with advertising (bottom-up), meticulously tracking each exposure and linking it to specific outcomes. 

    Real-Life Example of MTA in a Retail E-commerce Business

    Let’s consider a real-life example of using Multi-Touch Attribution (MTA) in a retail e-commerce business. Imagine an online clothing store called Fashion First that sells trendy clothes and accessories. Fashion First runs multiple digital marketing campaigns across different platforms such as Google Ads, Instagram, TikTok and email newsletters to drive sales and attract customers.

    With traditional single-touch attribution, Fashion First might only consider the last click a customer made before making a purchase, in many cases would be “Direct”, and this gets all the credit. However, this approach doesn’t provide a complete picture of the customer journey.

    With MTA, Fashion First gains valuable insights into how different marketing touchpoints contribute to customer conversions:

    1. Instagram Ads: A customer might first see an eye-catching Instagram ad showcasing the latest summer collection, piquing their interest.
    2. Google Search: Later, the customer decides to search for “Fashion First summer dresses” on Google to explore more options.
    3. Email Newsletter: After browsing the website, the customer subscribes to Fashion First’s email newsletter to stay updated on new arrivals and promotions.
    4. TikTok Influencers: A few days later, the customer comes across a TikTok ad by a popular fashion influencer wearing Fashion First’s products, reinforcing their interest in the brand.
    5. Direct: Finally, the customer, convinced by all these touchpoints, decides to make a purchase and buys from Fashion First’s website directly.

    Now Fashion First can attribute a portion of the credit to each marketing touchpoint in the customer journey. For instance, they might find that while Instagram ads initially grab customer’s attention, TikTok influencer collaborations play a crucial role in driving actual conversions. With this knowledge, Fashion First can now allocate their marketing budget wisely.

    Choosing the Right Multi-Touch Attribution Model

    Think of attribution models as different lenses to view your customer journey. Here are a few popular models marketers like to use:

    1. Linear Attribution: It’s the equal opportunity model, giving every touchpoint the spotlight it deserves.
    2. Time Decay Attribution: This one’s all about the here and now, recognizing the most recent interactions as the superstars.
    3. Position-Based Attribution: The co-stars shine bright in this model, with emphasis on the first and last touchpoints – they’re like the opening and closing acts of a fantastic show!
    4. Data-Driven Attribution: Picture this as the high-tech model, employing machine learning to reveal hidden patterns and offer a tailor-made approach. At Adcore, we highly recommend using this model!

    It’s important to note that there is no right or wrong attribution model, just whichever suits your business the best. 

    Benefits of Multi-Touch Attribution (MTA)

    Comprehensive view 
    MTA considers multiple touchpoints, giving a complete understanding of the customer journey

    Accurate attribution
    Credits touchpoints based on actual impact, leading to data-driven decisions and better ROI.

    Full-funnel optimization
    Obtains funnel position analysis and identifies effective channels for improved marketing strategies.

    Budget allocation
    Smarter budget distribution, saving costs and improving ROI.

    Improve customer experience
    Gains granular insights into customer insights such as time to conversion, user path comparison, customer loyalty and return rates


    In conclusion, Multi-Touch Attribution is your marketing superpower, revealing the complete tale of your customer’s journey and guiding you to make data-driven decisions. So embrace this mighty tool, and let it empower you to create marketing magic!


    Ready to implement MTA for your business? Get in touch with our team and consult with one of our experts today!

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