Importance of Matchback Analysis for Modern Marketers

Today, the web generates millions of orders in the multichannel commerce background. Usually these orders don’t have source codes.

An increasing number of catalogers are noticing the importance of matchback analysis to know response to their mailings.

However, the fact is that most direct marketers are unaware of its importance.

Matchbaccks include matching your order file with your recent mail files to attribute credit to the suitable source, keeping the client segment and each list in mind. 

This applies to both the prospect list and the existing house file (also known as the past buyer data file).  

Without a matchback, it will be difficult for a direct marketer to obtain perfect clarity on the source of received orders. 

For instance, clients who order after getting a catalog repeatedly select to store their orders online rather than over the phone, which lets them complete their purchase without seeking help from a customer service staff.

Tracking rates can be as low as 10% without the use of proper matchback approaches, which prevents marketers from achieving optimal ROI for their marketing investments. 

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Matchback services offer useful insights into the usefulness of your marketing campaigns by looking at responses received from customers and attributing them to particular marketing touchpoints.

How Do You Conduct Matchbacks?

The concept of matchback processing contains an integrated approach to meet your mail files with the NAP (name, address, and phone number) of clients in your order file.

Each matching record or order database is reported within its particular list of sources or segments.

If the order date must fall within your designated match window then only orders will be listed as matches.

In the matchback process, a matching window means a defined time frame during which the activity of your mailing list is observed and analyzed.

It consists of a list of dates that help record the suitable insights and data associated with customer response and engagement.

After conducting matchback analysis, analysis of major key performance indicators (KPIs) like average order value (AOV), key code, total circulation, total orders, response rate, dollars per book, total revenue, and segment description offers a unified view of campaign performance.

For a matchback analysis, the required data contains:

  1. Mail files from the relevant period
  2. A listing or segmentation of all source codes incorporated in each mailing 
  3. Order databases or records for the right period. Preferred fields contain key code (if tracking up front), name/address, customer’s phone number, order price (product demand $), and order date. 
  4. Other key codes if you are monitoring sales to a source during order

Some common matchback strategies to effectively assign a sale to whole marketing campaigns include the following:

  1. Multi-channel promotions: For various promotions within a response window, a rule is set to allocate credit for the response. 
  2. Segment-oriented matchback: One approach is to choose a shorter response window for email since the response window is considered a variable subject to the nature of the email campaign.
  3. Unmatched orders: Most of the time, orders can’t be matched back to a record of mail history. 
  4. A/B testing: Having a control group to which mailing is held back lets you determine whether segments that were mailed had a lift over the hold/control segment that wasn’t mailed.

There are different major factors to look for when examining the outcomes of your matchback.

A few from our experience are listed below:

The latest active mailing list sent before the order date will produce results.

If a match is not found, you may consider letting the order activity align with the past mailing list within your designated match window. 

If your business experiences important seasonal variations, this leads to a preference for mailing campaigns that were sent before and closely aligned with the peak season, resulting in more appropriate results.

Hence, it is important to evaluate the outcome of each mailing independently and incorporate the results holistically to address any potential skewing.

Accurate matchback reporting is dependent on the use of suitable date ranges.

Factors including expiration dates, the format of the mail, the number of pages, and the mailing frequency of house files are taken into account while choosing the time of order data that can be matched back.

How often you send an email and how you prepare a strategy to execute the results and data into your marketing process will determine how frequently you run a matchback.

Considering the number of tests conducted and your seasonality level, it is recommended to conduct a matchback analysis twice a year.

Use matchback outcomes to enhance your knowledge of previous mailings and effectively customize mailings according to segments. 

Another useful approach to using matchback data is to include a medium of influence in the segmentation framework.

This will improve the segmentation from RFM (recency, frequency, monetary value)  to RFMC (RFM along with the medium of influence).

Such segmentation will provide the ability to tailor marketing communications using the most influential channel.

While matchback is useful, it would be beneficial to keep in mind that the results of online-only buyers will be different from those of catalog-influenced buyers (in the case of comparable RFMs).

Online-only buyers are likely to have less influence from catalogs and for single internet purchases and a lower frequency of mailers may be considered for this segment.

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Before using a contact plan ensure that the segmented channel impacts are independently assessed and outcomes interpreted accordingly. 

However, it’s challenging to assign the internet portion. For instance, if a client purchased a product online and received an email containing a catalog.

He has two options to purchase the product either offline or online.

In this scenario, he would be considered a catalog buyer by looking at his initial purchase instantly after conducting a matchback because he has got an email that has both a house file key code identifier and a catalog. 

If the catalog drives much traffic to the internet, for the business under consideration, it will be difficult for senior marketing professionals to assess the impact of other marketing channels as the catalog will get the whole credit.

There could be other situations where, given the nature of the business under consideration, assessing the impact of catalogs is difficult when traffic is driven by SEMs.

Despite this, the end goal of matchbacks is to improve both content strategies and planning. With this, you can keep track of your marketing investments. It can’t be the only approach for the time.

Matchback Analysis in Marketing

Matchback services in marketing help you analyze customer responses, and assign them to specific marketing touchpoints. 

The matchback analysis helps you explore more advanced concepts to measure customer engagement and understand conversion patterns to drive personalized marketing campaigns. 

Businesses conduct matchback analysis to identify hidden revenue opportunities, optimize marketing channels, and modify their customer acquisition strategies for better outcomes.

Express Analytics helps businesses figure out the common challenges faced by them when implementing matchback strategies.

From collecting data and integration to attribution modeling, the company guides them through the process of building a matchback framework for accurate analysis.


Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Matchbacks

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