The Inconvenient Truth of Digital Misattribution

10:02 AM, 9 October 2018

Is digital attribution misleading advertisers?


The investment in online advertising continues to grow. With such a strong growth, advertisers should feel confident that it's delivering a strong ROI.


But what if mainstream methods of measurement like digital attribution aren't accurate? Or worse, misleading?

As the advertising landscape continues to evolve, it's crucial that brands are making sure they are investing in advertising that's working. In order to know that, we need methods of measurement that are accurate and transparent.

We believe that digital attribution is not delivering the accuracy that advertisers need.

To address this digital misattribution, we've partnered with Ebiquity to host a breakfast briefing on October 25th: Navigating Media Complexity and Digital Misattribution.

What are the issues with digital attribution?

While the most common method of measurement for linking online advertising to sales, we believe that too often calculating ROIs using digital attribution is inaccurate, resulting in inflated ROIs and overstating the performance of online advertising.

Typically there are three key issues:

  1. Attributing all sales to some form of online media. This fails to recognise the many other advertising touch points that contribute to sales.
  2. No account is made for offline advertising. What about consumers who saw a TV or heard a radio ad and subsequently bought online?
  3. Using rules-based attribution. The most popular rule is 'last click' where the last touchpoint along the consumer journey is given all credit for the sale. This doesn't account for all the other elements that could influence a consumer's decision.

This leads to online media investment being wrongly optimised to the media channels at the end of the consumer journey, as opposed to those throughout every stage.


All of these inaccuracies result in artificially inflated ROIs and overstatements of the performance of online advertising. As an industry, this is contributing to the millions of dollars wrongly invested in the digital media duopoly.

What is the solution?


The best solution to address these issues is to combine econometrics with algorithmic Digital Attribution.

By combining the two, it allows for direct comparison of online and offline media ROIs. This makes it the most accurate way to measure and optimise performance of the entire media budget.

Find out more at Navigating Media Complexity and Digital Misattribution


To help brands navigate the world of digital attribution and stay informed with the current issues and solutions, ANZA is partnering with Ebiquity to host Navigating Media Complexity and Digital Misattribution.

The seminar will tackle some critical issues and opportunities facing advertisers, and importantly, how to be navigate them for better business outcomes.

Some key points we will be covering:

  • What are advertisers doing to gain increased transparency in their media transactions? So much has been discussed on the global stage but, are we making any progress: What are the implications here in New Zealand?
  • How to best strike the right balance between online and offline media investment. There is a need to more accurately measure media performance, and generate comparable online and offline media ROIs.
  • Hear first-hand from industry-leading speakers, taking you through the attribution journey so you can better understand your customer's experience.

We invite all ANZA Members to attend this exclusive event. To sign up, email us here.

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