Acquisition & Engagement

Solving the Mobile Measurement Mystery #MMSSF15

Becky Doles

There are a lot of unsolved mysteries in this world, a lot of unanswered questions.

The top ones that keep me up at night:
– Why do you bake cookies, but cook bacon?
– If the #2 pencil is the most popular, why is it still #2?
– Why call it a building if it’s already been built?

Attending several marketing and mobile conferences every year, I often hear from other marketers that mobile measurement is a mystery. In fact, if they are responsible for driving results on mobile, it is probably the top spot on their unsolved mysteries list.

Earlier this week I flew to San Francisco for the day to attend Mobile Media Summit SF (#MMSSF15). There is always a lot of buzz around their events – high quality attendees, great speaking series, and an overall great place to meet others interested in mobile.

I was especially interested in hearing the discussion for the panel, “Solving the Mobile Measurement Mystery.” At TUNE, we work to build technology to help marketers do just that – measure marketing performance for mobile campaigns – so a marketer knows what works, what doesn’t and how they should be tuning their campaigns. This enables them to make confident data-driven marketing decisions and removes the mystery and guessing game.

Based on the session title, it was surprising to hear the discussion revolve around the mystery of mobile measurement versus how mobile measurement has been solved. Because it has been solved. We work with thousands of marketers (many of them the leader in their category) that do measure mobile.

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Even though mobile measurement isn’t a “mystery,” I understand there still are challenges:

  1. Measurement on mobile is not the same as measurement for desktop. Marketers that know how measurement works with desktop: there are cookies, parameters on URLs or pixel tags. That’s it. In mobile, there is set of whole new technical terms; SDK, look back periods, advertising IDs, IFA, attribution windows, etc. and no standard set of measurement methodologies. Marketers need to keep up with the changing ecosystem to understand the new ways major platforms such as Google and Apple make accurate measurement possible by providing marketers with access to advertising identifiers, while still respecting user privacy.
  2. The ROI calculation for mobile isn’t the same as other marketing campaigns. Since mobile isn’t just a marketing channel, it’s a core part of the customer experience for business today, measuring the ROI for mobile is not as clear. However, it doesn’t mean measurement is not possible, if you have the right measurement technology in place, you’ll at least have the data to start to figure out the right ways to calculate ROI.

It may take time, but you can overcome these challenges. We hear success stories from marketers every day and even highlight a few right here.

Are marketers just not measuring on mobile because they don’t know what to measure? Here are a list of in-app events you should be measuring and why.

Do marketers just not know how to find who is providing measurement on mobile? A good place to start is by visiting Twitter’s Mobile Measurement Marketing Platform partner list.

If you still consider mobile measurement a mystery, I’d love to hear your challenges and swap ideas with you, marketer to marketer. Being able to measure mobile – and learning it soon – will certainly put you ahead of the curve.

Here are a few recommended resources if you are interested in the technical side of how it all works:
– An intro to mobile app attribution
– Multi-touch measurement for mobile
– Cross-device measurement

Becky Doles

Becky is the Senior Content Marketing Manager at TUNE. Before TUNE, she led a variety of marketing and communications projects at San Francisco startups. Becky received her bachelor's degree in English from Wake Forest University. After living nearly a decade in San Francisco and Seattle, she has returned to her home of Charleston, SC, where you can find her enjoying the sun and salt water with her family.

4 responses to “Solving the Mobile Measurement Mystery #MMSSF15”

  1. Tim O'Neil says:

    I think it boils down to traditional marketers assuming they have all the answers, and when they realize they don’t (because what they use on the web doesn’t work/exist on mobile) they figure it’s a mystery. Really, they just need to ask better questions and find out WHO IS providing measurement on mobile.

    I think in general web and non-gaming companies (coming from a guy with a gaming-bias, of course) need to let go of the ego first, and be willing to learn and try new things. Easier said than done, but it’s what’s necessary to evolve their businesses… and the ones who do this sooner/better stand to gain the most.

  2. David Smooke says:

    The #2 pencil is the most popular and remains #2 because all writers must constantly be reminded, ‘there is a more renowned writer out there,’ and that motivation leads to better writing and reading.

    • Jenerationy says:

      Mystery solved! 😀

      One down, two to go.

      Thanks for reading the post and sharing a comment.

      • David Smooke says:

        To remain built, a building must always have people building it. Just like a software application, once people stop building on it, a building has a expiration date on it being built. So we call it building so people keep building.

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