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Accenture's Malik warns of "major" measurement problem

09 Oct 2019  |  David Pidgeon 
Accenture's Malik warns of "major" measurement problem

The failure of performance marketing to correctly measure all of its media channels is leading to misguided investment decisions and a "truncated" world view, Accenture Interactive warned this week.

Currently a "taboo" issue resulting from an industry that had allowed itself to "stagnate", marketers have now been urged to address the problem in the "pursuit of efficiency and effectiveness".

Speaking at the 2019 Automated Trading Debate (7 Oct), Amir Malik, the former Trinity Mirror adtech chief who now works as a digital marketing expert for Accenture, warned of a "major measurement problem" that attributes too much credit to paid media - ignoring the contributions of organic search and social, 'dark social' and email.

"Everybody is talking about paid media attribution, but true digital attribution has to incorporate more channels than paid media alone," Malik told Mediatel News.

"There needs to be a more diverse portfolio of digital attribution."

Accenture showed examples of a measurement mismatch, proving that in many cases performance marketing was essentially not counting owned media conversions while over-rewarding paid media, or was misreading the data because of poor measurement.

"There is clearly duplication taking place. So what should be encouraged is the pursuit of efficiency and effectiveness to go broader than paid media measurement," Malik said.

The adtech specialist added the issue was "the crux" of an operating model that had split owned and paid media, and because businesses often rewarded siloed teams based on channel performance, it had become a "taboo" subject that invited controversy.

However, Malik said he was hopeful a solution was in the works if advertisers and their partners were open to change.

"Internally, at brands, digital teams and paid-media marketing teams must come closer together and share data more frequently to gain better oversight of what's happening with their demand generation."

Malik said brands should also share that data with advertising partners.

"We can't have this truncated view of demand, or a limited view of the world in terms of conversions... But I'm pretty sure it's only a matter of time before businesses pick up on these discrepancies and will force change."

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