Broadcast Advertisers Adopted Web Lift Attribution Early and First – But Are Now Evolving to Multi-Touch Attribution, Conversions and Return on Ad Spend Analysis.

For more than 4 years now, major radio broadcasters have been using web lift: a form of marketing attribution that informs advertisers about the most effective ways to advertise on radio. “Web lift” is a simple measurement of the number of folks visiting an advertiser’s website after exposure to broadcast advertising, and the broadcast industry adopted this approach early and quickly. Now, nearly every major broadcaster in the United States is using web lift.

But, it’s really not that simple! With thousands of spots airing for a particular brand, multiple ad creatives, and things like station overlap as potential issues in the analysis, the simple concept of web lift can get really complex under the covers. But that’s why software systems like LeadsRx have come into play.

Broadcast attribution solutions make sense of the complexity and have made web lift a De facto standard within the broadcast industry. If you’re an advertiser and aren’t getting web lift reports from your broadcaster, ask for them. Your broadcaster will likely have it ready for you.

And, if you’re a broadcaster not already doing web lift…well, you may want to jump ahead to bigger and better things – like optimizing those ads for conversions rather than lift.

What’s Next For Radio Attribution? Look to the Enterprise

While broadcasters have been measuring web lift, early-adopting enterprise marketers have been turning to impartial multi-touch attribution, to rev up their marketing campaigns and increase effectiveness. Armed with the insights, technology, and confidence they need to spark marketing performance, marketers using attribution are monitoring how the dollars they put toward marketing programs improve top-line revenue.

Return on ad spend, or ROAS, is the primary KPI these days, and savvy CMOs rely on this metric to prove results, increase budgets, and add color to their resumes.

1. Radio Attribution is Evolving Beyond Web Lift

But what about web lift? Measuring traffic to websites is a great place to start, especially when the entire concept of analytic measurement is new, as it was years ago in the radio industry. But the reality is, not all website visitors are buyers. In fact, many sources report the average conversion rate is only 2%, meaning 98% of website visitors are not buyers.

So while this audience is an important indication of radio’s ability to attract interest, wouldn’t it also be great if radio could measure its true influence on conversions: those 2% of folks who ultimately increase revenue and trigger a return on ad spend. In fact, this is happening.

2. Capturing ROAS from Radio with Multi-Touch Attribution

More and more radio broadcasters are joining the ranks of innovative enterprise marketers using multi-touch attribution (MTA) to calculate ROAS. They’re now able to provide a complete picture of the radio audience not only in terms of their propensity to visit advertiser websites, but to convert and become buyers as well. By using both web lift and ROAS measurement, broadcasters are once again demonstrating strong leadership by arming their advertisers with the insights they need to make high-impact decisions.

3. Marketing Measurement has Evolved with MTA for Radio

It’s the evolution of marketing measurement. It’s conversion analysis, which requires attribution across all channels — not just radio. MTA looks at the entire breadth of marketing programs, including digital, social, influencer, direct mail, TV, podcast, and yes…radio. MTA focuses on the buyer audience and not solely on visitors to a website.

MTA monitors the entire customer journey, making sure attribution credit is given where credit is due over short and long cycles.

Without MTA, broadcasters and advertisers are limited to “point solutions” that only evaluate radio in isolation. These solutions have their place in terms of providing deep insights into ways to optimize the channel for better results. Often this boils down to how to get more lift and create more effective radio campaigns by making changes to daypart, creative, station, and other channel-specific dimensions.

The Benefits of MTA for Radio

The benefits of moving beyond just web lift to a full multi-touch attribution solution are significant:

  • Gaining a complete picture of all your marketing campaigns – and how they work together to drive conversions
  • Seeing how radio works with other channels, such as digital, to convert prospects into buyers
  • Calculating ROAS – because now the costs and revenue values are known across all channels, and these define performance
  • Which radio ads, stations, creative, dayparts, and other segments are driving the greatest return – not on “lift” but on revenue.

These benefits aren’t realized, however, when using those one-channel-only measurement solutions that fall short for advertisers promoting across multiple channels.

Looking at a single channel, like radio, in isolation can lead to ineffective or even incorrect optimizations.

It’s a great first step in the crawl towards measurement in general, but marketers and broadcasters should quickly move to the walk phase and implement MTA. This evolution can be easy and painless with the right tools selection. But if you’re stuck with low-value point solutions, you could be in trouble.

Will Radio Attribution Run at Some Point?

So, if MTA is the “walk” phase for radio broadcasters, what’s next so we can run?

How will analytics evolve to better aid advertisers while still helping broadcasters promote the value of radio? True attribution vendors are working on this next step, and it looks like “data” will be central to the discussion. From leveraging aggregated data for things like industry benchmarks to incorporating new visualization techniques, vendors know the real value of attribution is for making tangible business decisions that improve ad effectiveness.

Want more details? Check with LeadsRx, and we’ll show you how the crawl, walk, and run all come together.