Attribution Models: W-Shaped
What is a “W” shaped Model ?
The “W” shape model is an attribution model that gives different weights to activities that include the following criteria: An activity that is flagged as the primary campaign, the activity is associated with a primary contact, or the activity happened prior to the opportunity.
Why use a W-Shaped Model?
The W-Shaped model is favored by companies that:
- Believe that the touch prior to opportunity conversion is more influential than other touches in the buying process
- Wants to weight the activities that happen prior to opportunity creation more heavily than post-opportunity creation
- Are aligned with their sales team on the definition of a primary contact
- Have consistent Opportunity Contact Role data entry by their sales team and/or require a primary contact
When sales and marketing teams are aligned on the above points, the W-Shaped model fits how the business thinks about their buyer. It allows them to put their primary contact related data to good use while still looking across the entire account and allocating at least a portion of credit to touches throughout the buying process.
How do you attribute value to the different points in a “W” shaped model ?
We attribute heavier weights to activities with the following three attributes:
- The activity is flagged as the primary campaign
- The activity is associated with a primary contact
- The activity happened prior to the opportunity create date
We assign boolean values (true/false) to these attributes and calculate a score based on our findings. The scoring rubric looks like this:
WHEN primary_campaign = true AND primary_contact = true AND pre_opp = true THEN 5
WHEN primary_contact = true AND (primary_campaign = true OR pre_opp = true) THEN 4
WHEN primary contact = TRUE OR (primary_campaign = TRUE AND pre_opp = true) THEN 3
WHEN primary_campaign = TRUE OR pre_opp = TRUE THEN 2
The calculation happens from top to bottom. So the logic is saying:
- If the event is associated with a primary contact AND it’s the primary campaign activity AND the event happened before the opportunity, then give it 5 points OTHERWISE
- If the event is associated with a primary contact AND it’s EITHER the primary campaign OR happens before the opportunity is created (BUT NOT BOTH), then give it 4 points OTHERWISE
- If the event is associated with a primary contact (but does not take place prior to the opportunity creation and is not the primary campaign event) OR (it’s the primary campaign event AND happened before the opportunity was created (but not associated with the primary contact)), then it gets 3 points OTHERWISE
- If it’s the primary campaign activity OR it happened before the opportunity was created (but not associated with the primary contact in either case), then it gets 2 points OTHERWISE
- Give it one point (which means it happened after the opportunity was created and is not associated with the primary contact and it’s not the primary campaign activity)
Let’s look at a scenario (It’s like a word problem. We all loved word problems, right? :):
Let's say there are five campaign activities. Two are associated with the primary contact. One of the primary contact's campaign activities is also the primary campaign on the opportunity. All five happened before the opportunity was created.
Here is how we would think about points for the five events/activities:
- All activities happen prior to opportunity create, so the minimum points they would get are 2 points
- The activity that is a primary campaign activity and associated with the primary contact will get 5 points (since it also took place before the opportunity creation)
- The activity that is associated with the primary contact but not a primary campaign activity (remember, it also happened before opportunity creation) will get 4 points
The point allocation looks like this:
2 + 2 + 2 + 5 + 4 = 15
The way the Amount on the opportunity would be divided across the touches is:
Event 1: 13.33%
Event 2: 13.33%
Event 3: 13.33%
Event 4: 33.33%
Event 5: 26.67%
Which is 100%.