Crossing The Channel

With its exponential growth across the last few years, it is obvious why digital has become such an important factor in a marketing campaign for so many different brands across different sectors. Now at the forefront of media spend, and with consumer behaviour becoming more and more focused on digital devices, the true opportunities lie in the bridges between the digital and physical worlds. However, the challenge is understanding these bridges and how to make best use of them. The IAB asked Ian James (pictured below), general manager, international, at Verve – a member of the IAB’s Display & Data Steering Group – some questions on cross-channel attribution and how brands can make best use of it to maximise their campaigns.

IAB UK: Why has location data become such an important factor to consider with regards to cross-channel attribution?

Ian James: The digital and physical worlds of the consumer are becoming ever-more intertwined. And with this transformation advertisers are focusing increasingly on measurement to see just how successful their campaigns are.

As ad campaigns become more sophisticated, there will continue to be a focus on which platforms contribute along the path to purchase and just how important each is in influencing real-world consumer behaviours. 


CMOs are also under increasing pressure to justify their spend in the boardroom. This is encouraging marketers to use metrics that highlight which channels are driving business growth and, in turn, where to allocate future resources.

Ian James, General Manager, International, Verve

With this in mind, cross-channel measurement and attribution will become pivotal in highlighting campaign effectiveness, with mobile location playing a vital role in helping marketers understand real-world consumer behaviour.

What are the best ways to approach cross-channel attribution? And where does mobile location fit?

In order to master cross-channel attribution, marketers must first put in place a solid data foundation. This comes by identifying what’s measurable, what you can link to revenue, and pulling in as many customer touch points and variables as possible, starting with what the consumer wants and working backwards.

To achieve this, marketers and advertisers must work with partners that enable them to track real people, both online and offline. For example, advertisers can use mobile and location intelligence to follow the user along their journey. Such intelligence joins up all data points and provides insight into how engaging with a consumer online can lead to consumer action offline, a new toolkit for brands to get closer to their potential customer.

What advice would you give to advertisers in their efforts to crack cross-channel attribution?

Successful cross-channel attribution requires an understanding of a consumer’s movements, context, and relevancy, to ensure your message is being heard at the right time, with the biggest impact.

Key takeaways for advertisers looking to implement a cross-channel attribution programme include:

– Identify the top-performing and underperforming elements in your campaigns; really understand your successes to build an understanding of ‘sweet spots’, etc.

– Test new variables and make the necessary changes to understand best-performing creative formats, audience segments, geographies, and location events, while constantly exploring new additions that could add richer intelligence to your toolkit.

– Identify both long-tail strategies and short-tail strategies to help you both grab the attention of new customers, but also keep hold of them, and make them feel ‘looked after’ by your brand, but not ‘stalked’ or badly retargeted.

Results are only as good as the inputs; so starting with quality data that you can match and marry with other data sets is the key to winning in attribution.

Source :

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