Outcomes Everywhere

The great management thinker Peter Drucker once said, “If you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it.”

Measurement has been key in advertising for a long time. Since the days of attributing coupon offers in grocery stores to driving sales outcomes, to measuring TV viewership for the earliest video ads, brands have striven to improve their measurement tactics to increase the effectiveness of ads.

But in the last year, there has been a groundswell of attention on measurement in advertising, as marketers shift their focus from traditional media metrics to real business outcomes. 

Why, suddenly, is the term “outcomes” everywhere in media and measurement? 

For one, consumer privacy – and the proliferation of consumer data – has become centrally important to the advertising equation. Consumer data privacy needs to be protected. The sunset of the third-party cookie has been fated for years and today, any advertiser reliant on metrics from third-party cookies is working with an outdated framework. Advertisers have explored different ways to measure and track ad performance and the consumer journey, leading to the growth in outcomes. 

The advertising industry has also been shaped by a few years of change and inflation. Following pandemic years of uncertainty, quarantine, and shifts in consumer spending, brands and agencies cut budgets and slimmed down their teams. As the economy recovers, marketers are held more accountable for every dollar they spend. Innovation in measurement and stronger ROAS are crucial for marketers looking to get ahead.

As a result, brands and clients just expect more today. With the sophisticated technology and proliferation of data available, it’s not enough for advertisers to prove that they showed an ad, or even verify a consumer saw it. It’s not enough to know to what degree a consumer intends to purchase something. Marketers want detailed information about what in their marketing mix works (and equally important, what doesn’t work) and whether those consumers are taking action and buying a product.

There’s a new trend in measurement: “attention metrics”.

It describes this quest by marketers to put more data points around audience engagement, and crucially, combining those data signals to understand how engagement leads to a measurable sale. Put another way, the “old ways” of measurement like clickthrough rates and views are like seeing the world in two dimensions, while attention metrics give a more detailed, three-dimensional view that more closely resembles our lived experience. 

At Attain, we’re excited to be a part of this latest trend toward measuring advertising outcomes more accurately. 

With our consumer-permissioned transaction data, we’re able to measure what ads were worth consumers’ attention and how media influences their purchase behavior. Marketers can see Attain’s permissioned data in real-time, via a partner platform or the Attain Platform, to measure ROAS and other metrics, and plan or shift marketing strategies in an instant. 

We’re also able to measure performance across all retailers holistically, removing marketers’ blind spots and offering deeper competitive insights, to better evaluate media strategy and plan campaigns based on actual sales metrics.

Attain works with top tech partners like The Trade Desk, OpenX, Snowflake and Magnite, and we’ve got plans in the works to integrate with more platforms later this year, so stay tuned!