Find the latest and most impactful research on the measurement of marketing ROI and attribution here. All the research listed comes from the ARF or one of its subsidiaries: The Journal of Advertising Research (JAR), the Marketing Science Institute (MSI) or the Coalition for Innovative Media Measurement (CIMM). Feel free to bookmark this page, as it will be updated periodically.

JAR: Analyzing the Click Path of Affiliate-Marketing Campaigns

Online service providers increasingly use multiple channels for their advertising. Within that universe, an affiliate—usually a small, private company or individual maintaining a website or blog—informs others about a product or service sold by a partnering company (a merchant). This study found that the merchant’s simultaneous use of search-engine advertising, however, “cannibalizes clicks and sales in the click path.” As a result, “affiliates must use different text links to ensure positive impacts on clicks and sales in their affiliate-marketing campaign.”

Read the JAR article.

JAR: Attribution Modeling in Digital Advertising

How do different sales channels impact the consumer’s journey to purchase behavior? In this article, researchers compare and contrast four different attribution models: last-click, time-decay, uniformly distributed, and position-based. Given that different online channels are involved at different stages of the consumer’s purchase journey, they write, it is important to examine the ability of these models to properly attribute credits to the various channels that have an impact upon the final purchase.

Read the JAR article.

MSI: A Comparison of Approaches to Advertising Measurement: Evidence from Big Field Experiments at Facebook

Are observational methods using good individual-level data “good enough” for ad measurement? Using data from 15 U.S. ad experiments at Facebook, this study showed that current matching and regression-based methods overestimated effectiveness relative to the randomized controlled trials. In half of studies, the estimated percentage increase in purchase outcomes was off by a factor of three across all methods.

Read the working paper.

MSI: Attribution Modeling–Understanding the Influence of Channels in the Online Purchase Funnel

Proposes a framework to understand the influence of channels in the online purchase funnel; develops a three-level measurement model of customers’ consideration of online channels/sources, their visits through these channels over time, and subsequent purchase at the website. [See his related Webinar 2020: Getting Attribution Right for Your Bottom Line]

Read the working paper.