Profile picture for user Lauren Frye

B2B marketing attribution sets heroic, revenue-centric marketers apart from the rest. When it comes to optimizing marketing channel performance and generating ever higher ROI, it’s the most effective weapon in their arsenal.


The infographic below shows the current state of marketing attribution, using data derived from the 2015 State of Pipeline Marketing Report.

The report is comprised of survey responses from B2B marketers, and it assesses the state of affairs surrounding the B2B marketing and attribution space. 

Needless to say, the data is quite telling. But you can see for yourself.


How Many Marketers Use an Attribution Model?

A grand total of 74.6% of marketers actually use some type of attribution model. For all of us attribution enthusiasts, this is an encouraging statistic. However, hopes were dashed when we discovered that only 27.6% of marketers chose their attribution model for the right reasons -- to give credit where it’s due.

Which Attribution Models do Marketers Use?

72.4% of B2B marketers indicated that they a) don’t know why they chose their model, or b) they selected the easiest attribution option available to them. These simple attribution options are usually single-touch models that only credit revenue to one significant touchpoint across a lead’s entire pipeline journey .

What Does It Look Like to Compare Attribution Model by Industry?

After analyzing the data by industry, it turned out that Marketing/Advertising and Tech/Software industries experience very similar attribution trends. While an average of 26% of marketers in these industries don’t have an attribution model at all, the other 74% of marketers tend to follow the same trends in the types of models they select.

The infographic also compares Financial Services and Business Support, both of which have related, but not quite as similar attribution model use trends. The final industry category include two B2C industries that have longer sales cycles -- Education and Healthcare. These were included in the report findings because they have practically identical marketing struggles as B2B marketers. Curious enough, these industries tend to rely heavily on last-touch (or opportunity creation) attribution models to measure their marketing ROI.

Are Marketers Confident in Their Attribution Model?

While the industry trends might represent the current state of affairs, we also wanted to see how marketers intend to improve their marketing operations and reporting procedures.

A question we asked in assessing these predictions was whether the respondents believed they were using the RIGHT attribution model. A mere 31% said yes. A brave 38% said no. And an unsure 31% said they didn’t know.

Are Multi-Touch Attribution Models Better than Single-Touch?

As multi-touch attribution aficionados, this was an pivotal question to us, so we analyzed our data to find some indicative stats. Marketers who use a multi-touch model (U-shaped, W-shaped, or Custom/Algorithmic) were represented by CMOs, Senior managers, and Middle-managers.

80% of these multi-touch attribution modelers said they didn’t anticipate needing to change their attribution model in the near future. And, 86.7% of these marketers said that they have a well-aligned relationship with their sales team.

In addition, marketers who use a multi-touch attribution model are 37% more likely to believe that they use the RIGHT attribution model, compared to your average marketer.

How Does This Data Impact the B2B Marketing Space?

Most of the statistics are just plain interesting, but the most impactful way we can use this information is to compare the relative success of different attribution models. Also, the data serves to set benchmarks that we can measure against the next State of Pipeline Marketing Report that we’ll conduct in 2016.

For more statistics and in-depth analysis about B2B marketing and attribution modeling, take a look at Andrew’s articles on CMO budget success metrics and deeper industry analysis regarding attribution models.