Lead Conversion Touch Attribution: What Is It and How Does It Work?

Lead Conversion Touch Attribution: What Is It and How Does It Work?

8 Min Read

In the labyrinth of modern marketing, every interaction has the potential to be a significant moment of change. Uncovering the touchpoints with the most influence, however, demands precision and insight. The right marketing attribution model can help you decide where to allocate your efforts for maximum effectiveness. Consider lead conversion touch attribution, for example.

What Is Lead Conversion Touch Attribution?

As you try to figure out how to credit your marketing success, you’ll come across different marketing attribution models. Not all models are created equal, however, and each applies different methodologies to determine the most effective touchpoints across your marketing mix. 

Much like other models, the lead conversion touch attribution model focuses only on the specific touchpoints that contribute to the actual conversion of a lead into a customer. This multi-touch approach is rather complex compared to other multi-touch attribution models. It doesn’t just credit the first or last interaction a lead had before converting. It analyzes every exchange they had with your company and highlights the most impactful ones. 

How Does Lead Conversion Touch Attribution Work?

Lead conversion touch attribution provides a comprehensive view of the customer journey and the effectiveness of different touchpoints. The model consists of several steps:

  1. Data collection: This entails gathering quantitative insights on all of the interactions your leads have with your company across various touchpoints, including but not limited to:
    • Website visits
    • Email opens and clicks
    • Social media engagements
    • Paid advertising clicks
    • Offline interactions
  2. Touchpoint scoring: This involves rating each touchpoint based on its perceived impact on the conversion process. You can base your scores on diverse factors such as:
    • Type of touchpoint
    • Where the touchpoint appeared in the customer journey
    • Specific piece of content or offer
    • Lead’s post-interaction behavior

For example, if you’re a B2B brand, you may identify three (for the sake of simplicity) important touchpoints across your mix: a whitepaper, a webinar, and a demo with a sales rep. 

  1. Weighted attribution: This means assigning a percentage of credit to each touchpoint weighted based on the scores you assigned above. (In math terms, you’re dividing each individual touchpoint’s score by the total overall.) Weighted attribution ensures that you can properly recognize and credit all interactions that played a role in the conversion process.

In our example above, this B2B brand may weight a demo as 50% of the credit, while attending a webinar is 30%, and downloading a whitepaper is 20%.

  1. Marketing adjustments: While your initial weighting scheme may only be a hypothesis, the resulting reports will give you data you can use to hone it as you go to more accurately capture how people engage with your marketing touchpoints. Making data-driven decisions empowers you to finesse your marketing strategies to achieve the best outcomes. 
  2. Model optimization: This entails regular evaluations of your touchpoint scoring system. The goal is to ensure your efforts align with the changing dynamics of the customer journey and evolving marketing trends.

Advantages of the Lead Conversion Touch Attribution Model

There are many benefits to identifying the specific touchpoints that play a decisive role in converting leads into customers. The most significant are:

  1. Efficiency gains: Adopting the lead conversion touch attribution model can increase your efficiency, ultimately leading to a higher ROI and an improved customer experience.
  2. Deeper understanding of customer behaviors: This model helps you understand how leads are first captured and what triggers a positive response from them. This information is highly valuable for adapting your marketing efforts to improve your results.
  3. Campaign optimization: Accurate lead attribution helps you determine where you should allocate the most time and effort within your campaigns. This allows you to inject your resources where they can make a noticeable difference.
  4. Increased product and feature adoption: Lead conversion touch attribution reveals the interests of your customer base. Therefore, it helps you add the right features to your products and services, potentially increasing adoption among your audience.
  5. Easy implementation: The lead conversion touch attribution model is pretty straightforward, and it can provide quick insights into the effectiveness of your marketing efforts.
  6. Tailored view: Unlike one-size-fits-all solutions, this model highlights touchpoints that are driving actual conversions for your specific organization. As a result, lead conversion touch attribution leads to a better understanding of the impact a lead’s different interactions had throughout the customer journey.

Disadvantages of the Lead Conversion Touch Attribution Model

Lead conversion touch attribution is not flawless. It may neglect pivotal touchpoints that indirectly contribute to a conversion. Other shortcomings of the model are:

  1. Oversimplification of the customer journey: The lead conversion touch attribution model may accidentally assign all of the credit to a single touchpoint when implemented incorrectly. This could misrepresent the actual impact of various interactions.
  2. Added expenses: Implementing lead conversion touch attribution is more comprehensive than other attribution models. Consequently, it may require additional resources and expertise to set up and maintain, which can be costly.
  3. Potential inaccuracies: Errors in data collection and analysis are always possible in the lead conversion touch attribution model. This could result in incorrect insights and botched optimization strategies.

Use Cases and Examples

Still unclear about how the lead conversion attribution model can help you gauge the impact of your actions across multiple channels? In each of these examples, the lead conversion touch attribution model provides a better understanding of interactions that drive conversions.


A customer discovers an e-commerce store through a Google search and clicks on a paid search ad. They then browse the website and add items to their cart but do not complete the purchase. Later, they receive an email with a discount code and complete the purchase. In this scenario, the lead conversion touch attribution model would pin the conversion on the paid search ad and the email with the discount code, giving more credit to these touchpoints because they each played a decisive role in the conversion.

B2B Marketing 

A B2B company generates a lead through a LinkedIn ad. The lead then visits the company’s website and downloads a whitepaper. Subsequently, they attend a webinar and eventually become a customer. In this scenario, the lead conversion touch attribution model would attribute the conversion to the LinkedIn ad, the whitepaper download, and the webinar because they all contributed to the conversion.

Content Marketing

A company creates a blog post that generates a lead through an organic search. A lead then subscribes to the company’s newsletter and eventually becomes a customer. In this scenario, the conversion is equally attributed to the organic search, the newsletter subscription, and the blog post. Social media or other touchpoints that the customer didn’t see or interact with didn’t impact the end result and don’t get any credit.

Email Marketing

An email marketing campaign generates a lead who then visits the company’s website and downloads a free trial. Later, they become a paying customer. In this scenario, the lead conversion touch attribution model would credit the email marketing campaign for influencing the lead to become a customer. It would signal to the business that it either needs to keep up the good work with its email marketing campaigns or improve its efforts across other channels that are not contributing to the bottom line. 

Social Media Marketing 

A social media ad generates a lead who then visits the company’s website and fills out a contact form. However, they don’t complete a purchase. In this scenario, there is no conversion, so no credit is attributed to any marketing action. 

The Rise of TV Attribution

Attribution models are increasingly being used to measure the effectiveness of TV advertising campaigns. This has been driven by advancements in technology and the increasing importance of accurate attribution for advertisers. 

Traditionally, TV advertising has been difficult to measure, with advertisers relying on viewership data to gauge the success of their campaigns. However, with the rise of Connected TV (CTV) and other digital solutions, it’s now possible to measure the impact of TV campaigns more accurately.

TV attribution allows, among other things, marketers to allocate resources more efficiently and improve the overall customer experience. As ad revenue for digital properties continues to grow, TV attribution is becoming increasingly important, helping ensure that TV advertising remains competitive and effective as a marketing channel.

To help make TV attribution more accurate, MNTN developed Verified Visits™, a model that asses when a user watches a TV ad and then visits a brand’s website on a device within their household within a specified time frame.

The Verified Visits™ model is built on three key principles:

  1. Verified viewable ads: MNTN’s non-skippable CTV ads are served on premium streaming networks, ensuring that the ads are actually viewed.
  2. Customizable visit windows: Advertisers have complete control over the length of their visit window to ensure MNTN’s attribution aligns with their own definition.
  3. Cross-device events: MNTN’s model takes into account cross-device events for a more comprehensive view of interactions.

Want to learn more about Verified Visits™? Visit MNTN and request a demo today.

Lead Conversion Touch Attribution: Final Thoughts

The lead conversion touch attribution model can be a valuable compass, helping professionals like you optimize their efforts and enhance the customer experience. However, although it brings efficiency gains and insights into customer behaviors, you should be mindful of lead conversion touch attribution’s potential to oversimplify the customer journey and give you inaccurate results. 

Recognizing both the strengths and limitations of this model is key to adopting a balanced approach. As you navigate the ever-evolving marketing landscape, remember: Lead conversion touch attribution is a tool in your arsenal, not the entire battle plan.