4 Models Used to Attribute User Acquisition Campaigns [Cheat Sheet]

windows of opportunity-011) CLICK-BASED ATTRIBUTION

  1. 7-day standard: If a user clicks on an ad served by Network X, and then installs the app within 7 days of that click, it would get the credit for that install – assuming there wasn’t another click that followed (under the last click rule).
  2. 24-hour fingerprinting attribution: Used when there is no device ID or Google Play Referrer; considered highly accurate only in the short term and as such in only open for 24 hours.
  3. Facebook, Google & Twitter: For Facebook and Google, windows are fixed at 28 and 30 days, respectively, while Twitter offers a choice between 1/7/14/30/90 days. Because these sources mostly work on a CPC basis, they will charge for any click that occurred within their window regardless if it was the last click or not.
  4. Configurable window: Since effective CPI is very much dependent on the duration of a window, comparing networks with different windows is not really possible. With configurable windows, advertisers can normalize their data for a proper apples to apples comparison, and properly measure campaigns that are limited in time (e.g. 24 hour clearance sale).
windows of opportunity-022) VIEW-THROUGH (AD VIEW-BASED) ATTRIBUTION

  1. 24-hour standard: Since an ad view is not considered a signal of intent, its window is short – usually up to 24 hours, and only works when using ID matching. If there was a last click that led to an install within its own window, the click will always beat the view.
  2. Facebook and Twitter: The social networks will always charge advertisers based on a 24-hour view-through attribution window. Google doesn’t offer view-through attribution.

Let’s look at the following example to better illustrate the rules of attribution windows:


Which Network Wins?
Network B
1) Network B had the last click within a lookback window.
2) Click wins over view even if the latter is within its window.

Attributing media/campaigns that touched the user within the set attribution window but were not the last touch. Under the dominant last click rule, assist data is not used for billing purposes, but it does offer marketers key insights into which sources drove users down the funnel.003

Network A credited for install but is Network B an install assist?
Although it is within the winning source’s window, it’s own window is set to 7 days while the install was on day 8.


windows of opportunity-044) TV ATTRIBUTION

The newest form of UA attribution is used to measure the impact of TV ads in a specific city or GEO on immediate organic installs in the app stores. This is done by matching data on the exact airing time of each ad (known in advance) with an app install that occurs within a time frame (usually in minutes) determined by the advertiser.


In the above example, only the install by User A can be attributed to the TV campaign.

A marketer can also use a deferred deeplink to the app store, and then launch the app with the TV-specific promotion in the welcome screen.