Nearly 80% of Marketers Seeking Stronger Cross-Device Attribution, According to DMA/Winterberry 2016 Q3 Quarterly Business Review

U.S. marketers are reporting overwhelming concern about their ability to leverage consumer attributes across channels. According to survey data compiled in support of the Data & Marketing Association/Winterberry Group Quarterly Business Review (QBR), a quarterly benchmarking of data-driven marketing (DDM) activity among both marketers and the ecosystem of suppliers who support their efforts, nearly 80% of marketers are seeking improved cross-device identification to deliver personalized and relevant marketing communications. Survey respondents also said that “more consistent terminology” around cross-device technology would be helpful to their efforts.

“The acceleration in the number of devices used by customers requires marketers to continually innovate and adapt in order to deliver a more personal and relevant customer experience, and the Q3 QBR reveals their pursuit of accurate identification of their customers across devices,” said Neil O’Keefe, DMA’s Senior Vice President, CRM and Member Engagement. “The QBR findings affirm that continued progress is required, and that tools like DMA’s new cross-device identification RFI template with common nomenclature are timely accelerators of the ability to deliver more seamless customer experiences.”

“Increasingly, marketers are coming to find that the path to true ‘customer-centric’ marketing begins with the ability to recognize their audiences across touchpoints,” said Jonathan Margulies, Managing Director at Winterberry Group. “It doesn’t come as a great surprise, then, that the performance brands are generating from their data-driven marketing efforts has tracked so closely to their investments in the corresponding technology, datasets and omnichannel marketing strategies.”

According to the research, investments in DDM grew at a faster clip during the third quarter than reported during the previous period. On a 1-to-5 scale (with 5 indicating that DDM expenditures grew “substantially” over the previous period), panelists benchmarked their DDM spending at 3.36, up from 3.21 last quarter—and higher than any other period over the last two years, with the exception of the 3.42 reported during the first quarter of 2016.

“This survey demonstrates the growing importance of marketing to people instead of devices,” remarked David Kohl, CEO of Morgan Digital Ventures and the Program Leader for DMA’s XDID Structured Innovation Program. “We’ve seen cross-device ID became part of the marketing and media lexicon this past year, but the technology is still developing, and some of the confusion and complexity is holding back the industry. I believe that 2017 will be a tipping-point year when marketers will move from exploration to insistence that their agencies and media partners adopt cross-device technology and the seamless consumer experience it enables.”

DMA’s Cross-Device ID (XDID) Advisory Council, made up of buyers and sellers of cross-device technologies, released earlier this fall the “Cross-Device Identity Solutions RFI Template.” This template RFI outlines critical questions to ask cross-device vendors and common terms and definitions to use in “requests for proposals” for cross-device services.

Other Report Highlights:

  • Over half of respondents (61.6 percent) said that they’re leveraging cross-device ID solutions at least to some extent—or across some marketing channels today. Fewer are doing so regularly (19.5 percent)—or across most channels—or extensively, across all channels (7.2 percent).
  • For the first time since mid-2015, respondents said their DDM-generated sales revenue grew at a faster pace during Q3 than during the previous calendar quarter. On a 1-to-5 scale (with 5 indicating that DDM-generated revenue rose “substantially” over the previous quarter), panelists pegged their Q3 sales growth at 3.35, up from 3.31 during Q2 (but still lower than at any point since Q2 2015).
  • Correcting what had become a year-long trend of decelerating DDM-generated revenue growth, DDMers said that returns from their efforts intensified during Q3. 44 percent of panelists said their DDM-generated revenue increased in Q3, while about the same number said their revenue remained the same (44.5 percent). This compares to last quarter when fewer reported an increase (40.9 percent).

DMA members can download a complementary copy of the QBR by clicking here to visit the DMA Bookstore. The cost for non-members is $49.95.

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