Searching for upper-funnel attribution and predicted value in travel marketing (whitepaper)


The travel industry saw the most troublesome period on record during the COVID-19 pandemic, reporting a loss of $4.5 trillion in 2020. From the entire collapse of all travel at the start of the pandemic, customers’ attitudes are more dubious than ever.

Now the travel industry is back on track, businesses must build an effective investment strategy to scale digital activity and profitability.

Attribution modeling is one of the biggest challenges in building an effective investment strategy. With the growing changes across technology, government regulation and consumer privacy awareness, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to track users. This issue is intrinsically linked with the travel industry, where a user may take up to six months to consider purchasing and booking a vacation.

Without visibility of results beyond the bottom funnel of activity, businesses are unable to effectively scale activity beyond the lower funnel. Because of this, they must rely on hunches and hard-to-defend KPIs to justify their digital investment strategy. Ultimately, many businesses optimize their channels running at a negative ROI, as an assumed uplift has not been calculated.



Topics covered in this whitepaper include:


The front cover of a whitepaper created by Search Laboratory, digital marketing agency, called 'Searching for upper-funnel attribution and predicted value in travel marketing'.

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The challenges of considered purchases


Most considered purchases of a sizeable value require multiple visits from a customer before a decision is made. It is common the decision is not made in isolation. It may involve other stakeholders making for a tracking nightmare.

You will almost certainly find the process extends beyond the lifetime of a cookie and can transpire across various people using different devices. It’s clear when you take a step back that no conventional approach to attribution modeling will solve this issue.

Building a data strategy to collect identifiable information and tie up touchpoints is key to evolving your digital marketing strategy.


The digital maturity solution


Implementing a data-driven strategy and utilizing your audience data will naturally direct your business down a path of digital maturity. The travel industry has the ability to easily gate valuable vacation information in exchange for user-identifiable information.

This makes it possible to gather essential information at the start of the user journey, the middle and the end transaction. Each stage gated behind identifiable information allows us to join users together across multiple devices and often many months via soft login solutions and centralization of data. This is a key process that you will continue to develop over time.

Start small, prove value and scale in complexity


Adopting a clear and patient approach is key to climbing the maturity curve. The potential and depth of machine learning can be daunting. That’s why it is important to start small and steadily scale in complexity.

A lot can be accomplished by a singular extraction of CRM data. It is then about putting automated processes in place so machine learning can do the hard work for you.

In this whitepaper, we walk through a data-driven alternative, outlining the more efficient step-by-step process of evolving your marketing, to see the true value from your top of funnel campaigns.

Download your free copy of our whitepaper today