Harnessing a single source of truth to maximize profitability & optimize budget distribution

By Yevgeny Peres & Einav Mor-Samuels
ssot maximize profitability - featured

Have you ever tried to listen to multiple records simultaneously, or make sense of multiple conversations at the same time? Of course not. 

Yet that’s exactly what UA managers are forced to do day in and day out when attempting to decipher a fractured data sources’ reality, with too many musicians and not a conductor in sight.

The overwhelming soundwave of data that marketers have to deal with nowadays is creating a deafening cacophony, data duplications, and ultimately wrong and wasteful decisions.

No more SOS. It’s SSOT moving forward

As we’ve already learned, a single source of truth (SSOT) helps marketers get a trusted performance view they so desperately need to be able to piece together multiple measurement frameworks. 

Our research shows that marketers that use an SSOT and run primarily non-SRN campaigns, have discovered that around 62% of their SKAN installs were duplicates. At the same time, marketers that run primarily SRN campaigns uncovered that their SKAN installs duplicates stand at around 18% (given the need for ATT consent).

Not a fun revelation, but a critical one if you don’t enjoy throwing money away.

So far, the numbers are showing that putting an SSOT in place can help apps see a 29% uplift in paid install attribution, a 40% drop in eCPI, and a 62% increase in revenue attributed to paid marketing efforts. 

Nothing short of massive when you start thinking about the effects this could have on your bottom line and strategic growth plans.

So, let’s talk about the practical ways for you to put these mind-blowing facts into use, so you can start reaping the multiple rewards an SSOT offers. 

And we’ll start by exploring the gap between what you’re doing now and what you could be doing.

The difference between your current bidding strategy and SSOT

Bidding strategy vs. SSOT

In most cases, existing strategies focus on optimizing towards a certain KPI, be it tCPI, tCPA, or tROAS (with t standing for target). Put these performance metrics into the SSOT prism, however, and your numbers behave differently, showing better results than expected. 

When you think about it, being able to tweak your bidding strategy and adjust your budget allocation accordingly — gives your business a clear competitive edge.

Let’s break down this claim so it’s easier to understand the rationale behind it.

Prior to the iOS 14+ reality, MMPs used to offer attribution models that considered last-click (almost exclusively) within their attribution window, whereas nowadays, attribution that relies on user-level data is limited and offers very little certainty. How do you combine these methods with Apple’s deterministic SKAdNetwork

You guessed it — SSOT. 

And if you aimed for a certain CPI and an SSOT showed you a lower number than expected, that means a measurement gap has been preventing you from creating a competitive advantage.

SKAdNetwork vs. other models

What is the actual impact an SSOT can have on your business? Let’s talk numbers. 

  • Better paid install results for no extra cost – On average, apps using an SSOT see a 29% lift in attribution compared to their previous paid install estimates. 

Interestingly, although an SSOT raises attributable conversions for all ad networks, we see that the numbers change significantly from one network to the other, and from one app to the other.

  • Over-inflated eCPI is draining your budget – To calculate eCPI, the total cost of a campaign is divided by the total number of installs. But, applying your total campaign cost to only a partial set of install data is guaranteed to blow up your eCPI and dry up your wallet. 

An SSOT will allow you to estimate a lower, more accurate eCPI, identify which campaigns to spend more on, and which campaigns to shut down. 

  • Beefing up your ROAS results by properly attributing revenue – Revenue generated by what was previously unattributed installs can now be correctly attributed to the relevant ad network. 

Looking at SSOT in-app purchases (IAP) revenue, we see Shopping apps leading the board with a 70% increase in IAP revenue attributed to NOIs. Coming in second are Gaming apps showing a lift of 45%+, and an impressive 69% increase in IAP for Hardcore Gaming. 

To learn more about how an SSOT actually works – click here.

What can be the potential impact for your business? 

SSOT potential business impact

In a nutshell: Higher spend, more accurate bidding strategies, and better budget allocation that can now be justified.

Let’s say network A, for example, yielded 100,000 installs that cost you $100,000, which means the CPI = $1. 

After deduping the numbers through an SSOT sifter, we’ll be able to see that in fact, 200,000 installs came in from network A, eCPI is really $0.5, and ROAS is higher than we thought it would be. This means we can now dial up the bid to $2, increase paid installs, and boost profitability, while keeping SSOT eCPI under $1.

Why is tCPI so important? Using SSOT, your spend remains the same at $1, while the SSOT eCPI goes down to 50c per user (eCPI = spend / SSOT input). With a new tCPI in place, you can now approach network A and ask them to “crank up the volume” to keep the productive stream of installs coming. 

How to implement a new bidding strategy for SSOT

With SSOT as the new sheriff in town, you can set a new CPI or tCPI based on the ratio of current CPI divided by SSOT eCPI, and can apply this per channel, campaign, and even creative.

The adjusted tCPI should be calculated as follows: 


Note that the spend pie will get bigger, alongside the budget distribution per each media channel: 

SSOT uplift x eCPI / SSOT eCPI

To learn more about the potential impact an SSOT can have on your business – read here.

A word about budgets & the path ahead

SSOT budgets and path ahead

Understandably, budgets are likely to flow towards where the higher potential uplift is. If, on the other hand, the SSOT eCPI isn’t significantly lower, there’s no need to change anything in your budget allocation.

Whatever happens, get ready to monitor your true CPI goal vs. your SSOT eCPI constantly, as the eCPI gap will naturally fluctuate from time to time. And because this is a new bidding strategy that will constantly change, be sure to not only keep a finger on its pulse, but also adjust it accordingly on a weekly basis.

And if you’re still not entirely convinced how an SSOT can help you get acclimated to the new iOS 14+ era, consider this: It’s your key to maximize the advantages of each measurement model you’re currently relying on. 

When you can deduplicate data from your aggregate models, you can make the most out of full LTV data based on traditional attribution models, as well as full deterministic data points from your SKAdNetwork. 

This might seem counterintuitive on a first read, but even in our day and age, data accuracy and user privacy can and should continue to coexist. 

Having certainty in the true results of your marketing efforts is mission-critical. And being able to funnel your performance stats through the prism of an SSOT — ensures you can continuously optimize your ad spend and (finally) scale your business with much-needed confidence.

Key takeaways 

  • Measurement is not a single perspective anymore. With a single source of truth (SSOT) you can now bid higher, spend more, and justify it. 
  • Your paid installs are higher than you might think, and your eCPI is about a third of what it currently is. An SSOT helps you increase your attribution coverage and boost revenue attributed to your marketing efforts.
  • An SSOT allows you to constantly tweak your bidding strategy as your eCPI fluctuates. This will ensure you maintain a clear competitive edge, and allow you to bid higher than expected on the right channels.
  • An SSOT helps you maximize the advantages of your measurement models. When you can deduplicate data from your aggregate models, you can make the most out of full LTV based on traditional attribution models, and full deterministic data points from SKAdNetwork — which will help you make better decisions in the user privacy era.

Yevgeny Peres

Big fan of all things measurement and disrupting the status quo. Not a fan of bios.

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Einav Mor-Samuels

With extensive experience in digital marketing, Einav is a Content Writer at AppsFlyer. Over the course of the past 15 years, she has gained ample experience in the mobile marketing landscape, researching market trends, and offering tailored solutions to customers' digital problems. Einav fuels her content with data-driven insights, making even the most complex of topics accessible and clear.
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