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Keys to Advanced Attribution for Hotel Marketers

In today’s interconnected world, hotel marketers use a variety of online and offline media to drive bookings — email, web, retargeting, direct mail, etc. It can be very difficult to determine what’s effective and what’s a waste of money. Attribution attempts to discover which initiatives are most effective, but the commonly used last touch attribution typically gives full credit where only partial credit is due. Advanced attribution is an innovative way to determine the proper credit for each touchpoint, thereby allowing marketing teams to optimize their efforts more effectively.  This innovative analytics approach is especially valuable for hotel marketers, often driving 20-60% increases in booking rates. 

Here are the five key components to a successful attribution program:

1. Incrementality

It’s important to evolve your marketing strategies based on previous interactions with customers. Attribution should address how many incremental bookings each touchpoint provides that would not have happened had that touchpoint not been created.

2. Connectivity

If attribution occurs in silos, several departments may take credit for the same booking, creating inflated, useless data. You must connect online and offline data before you attempt attribution efforts.

3. Cost

It’s critical to get basic attribution and conversion practices operating smoothly before enacting advanced attribution. Consider the costs of making sure your data is clean, web forms are optimized, and SEO is humming along before you start spending money and opportunity cost on measuring ineffective media.

4. Segmentation

Different segments behave in very different ways. With business travelers, vacationers, and program loyalists all following unique decision paths, segmentation is especially important to hotel marketers. Attribution is much more effective when each segment has its own model.

5. Usefulness

As useful as advanced attribution is, if the results are not used in the actual optimization of media, it becomes a waste of money by default. Make sure that the your media buyers can and will incorporate the data produced by advanced attribution.

Merkle’s Connected Attribution solution provides valuable measurement and insights capabilities to help you make better decisions about your marketing investments.

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