Saying Goodbye to Click-Based Measurement

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by Nadia Tan

Using proxies such as clicks is no longer valid in this multi-device world. Facebook’s Nadia Tan explains why it’s time to say goodbye to click-based measurements.

I have a saying. If a relationship doesn’t make you a better person, then you are in the wrong one. The same applies for many businesses in Asia. If your measurement approach doesn’t drive more effective campaigns, then you need to change your approach.

Click-attribution relies on cookies and clicks, which simply doesn’t work in today’s mobile driven and multi-device world. Asia’s rapid move to mobile means the customer journey has changed. The average person owns 1.7 devices and this number is expected to double to 4.3 devices per person by 2020, according to research firm Strategy Analytics.

Click-based measurement can’t capture cross-device conversion paths. You may think your advertising campaign has reached three separate people when actually it’s the same person moving between mobile, desktop and tablet. Or perhaps you put your marketing success down to amazing direct traffic to your site, but what you can’t see is your customer viewing your ad on mobile, then typing your site name directly on their desktop browser, making a purchase without an ad click.

The industry’s wide acceptance of a click-based model is like a bad long-term relationship. When you first start dating, things just seem to, well, ‘click’, but the more time goes on you realise something is fundamentally wrong. Breaking up isn’t going to be easy. You have built your life, chosen your education, friends and job around this person, but deep down you know the current relationship is just not working out anymore.

Similarly, you have built your business for the past 10 or 15 years around click-based measurement, but deep down you know that it is no longer the right way of measuring because consumer behaviour is changing. The future of measurement needs to be based on people and not clicks. Using proxies such as clicks is no longer valid in this multi-device world.

About 15 years ago when a person used just one desktop, click-based measurement was an effective tool, however in today’s multi-device environment it is highly inaccurate. People buy products, clicks do not buy products.

So how do we measure based on people? Using people-based measurement tools allows advertisers to determine the additional business driven by ads on a platform to make future marketing decision. For example, we recently introduced Conversion Lift, a people-based measurement tool that allows advertisers to accurately determine the additional business driven by Facebook Ads and make future marketing decisions based on this information. This is one example of a how the right tools can give insight into what extent your digital advertising efforts add value.

The father of modern advertising John Wanamaker once said: “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half.” Measurement tools have evolved in such a way that today we do know which half work, so make sure you are measuring the right things. Cookies and clicks don’t buy products, people do.