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The Client 

A local hair product manufacturer with a large online presence. Known amongst online beauty retailers for a wide range of products.

Their Challenge

This manufacturer approached Brand Buddha to establish attribution tracking across all of their various marketing strategies.
In the online haircare industry, tracking marketing activities that contribute to point-of-purchase is extremely difficult. Not only does this hair care product manufacturer sell through its own e-commerce site, but its supply chain also relies on distributors who sell to cosmetologists and independent beauty stores. Sales at the beauty store level are rarely tracked.
Brand Buddha’s approach allowed for:

  1. sales tracking in real-time
  2. process optimization
  3. strategy adjustment

The goal was to improve attribution, drive demand, and then scale media efforts where necessary.
Real-time sales tracking is difficult in this industry. While some third-party sites and retailers do track transactions, there aren’t enough for an effective sample size.
An additional factor was the digital sources of the brand’s presence, which included branded content,  earned media, PPC, a strong social presence, and digital ads. Any insight and analytics needed to include these as well.

Our Strategy 

Obtaining sales data across all points of the sales process was the most difficult task Brand Buddha faced.  To circumvent those information gaps, Brand Buddha created a “Selfie and Self Care” campaign. Customers styled their hair and sent us selfies to be sent free gifts. This was a reliable way to capture customer data after the point-of-sale and track products to the vendors that sold the product. Using this as our conversion point, a data-driven attribution model was implemented across digital, social, SEO and organic. Data feeds were established from relevant media sources and unique tracking was developed across all creative sets.
Before a customer submitted a selfie on the website, a demo profile methodology was employed to capture invaluable information about consumers:

  • gender
  • hair type
  • ethnicity
  • purchase needs
  • transaction dates.

Using these data sets with distributor sell-through data, Brand Buddha was able to create a multi-channel attribution model that tracked the specific number of products sold, which product those were combined with, and which products were popular amongst different demographics. Brand Buddha also discovered how customers learned about the products and which steps they took to research before purchase. This formula was then applied to campaign reporting.

Initial Findings

Customer information including purchase frequency and local vendor information provided the most compelling information immediately after purchase.
By analyzing the customer data with attribution tracking, it was determined that customers needed to be exposed to:

  • awareness information within the funnel at least 5 times over 13.5 days
  • consideration information 2-6 times over 1-3 days
  • conversion information 1-3 times over 0-2 days.

Over two-thirds of purchases originated from social media and stylists—this changed the branding/messaging distribution model to focus resources in a more targeted fashion on social media and in demo-driven advertisements.
Using this information, Brand Buddha created specific assets for various audiences and strategy optimization began to focus on scalable media opportunities.
Furthermore, by using a multi-touch attribution model, Brand Buddha confirmed that our social media strategy was creating additional brand engagement that was indeed reaching the intended audiences—first-time buyers and women well-versed in hair care.

Application of Data 

Based on compiled data and customer feedback, Brand Buddha increased our content production, decreased PPC spending to focus funds on social media advertisements and campaigns.
Digital targeting strategies were revised to better reach:

  • people by hair pattern
  • to speak more specifically to women
  • bloggers
  • general enthusiasts.

Remarketing budgets were also maximized and frequency capped in order to optimize spend closer to the point of conversion.
In effect, the media mix began to mirror the conversion funnel established by the initial attribution tracking data, and budgets were scaled accordingly within each stage of the messaging funnel.

Results from Adopting an Attribution Marketing Model 

Of all sources tracked via attribution, social media was credited with 65% of total sales. Most importantly, marketing analytics allowed optimizations to lead an impressive increase in our primary KPIs.

28% Increase in Brand Engagements
43% Increase in Attributed Sales
31% Improvement in Cost Per Unit Sold

As Brand Buddha increased our prospecting strategies, Brand Buddha also saw a lift in the percentage of conversions coming from SEO and Organic sources—earned and owned media rather than paid media.
The dynamic nature of our sales tracking coupled with ongoing attribution analysis has exceeded our client’s needs and expectations. They continue to use this attribution tracking and personalized marketing strategy to plan, execute, and analyze all aspects of their organization to pave the way for better ROI.

The Secret Sauce

How did we approach this strategy? In five simple, easy-to-follow steps.

  1. Set and align goals with the client.
  2. Using those goals to determine a useful strategy that was the Goldilocks of attribution.
  3. Applying this attribution in real-time and collecting data.
  4. Testing all the ways we gained data and ensuring that no other combination could be more effective.
  5. Analyzing the data and finding where the “flaw” lives, and doing what we can to fix it.

Are you curious to see this in action? Download our account-based marketing ebook and learn more about how our attribution marketing models can be just what your organization needs.

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