MMM Feature Metrics - Spend, Impressions, or Clicks

Updated by Eddie Chou

Customers often ask whether we model media against spend, impressions, or clicks. At Rockerbox, we generally use daily spend when available. Here are the reasons we find spend to be a better metric:

  • Direct Control: Marketers have direct control over their spend investment. If our insights were based on impressions or clicks, marketers would face additional complexity in translating that into budgets for each platform.
  • Universal Availability: Spend data is more universally available compared to impressions and clicks. Many ad platforms don't provide impression-level reporting, and clicks can't be measured for CTV or out-of-home marketing.
  • Consistency: Not all impressions are recorded equally. For instance, if one platform includes viewability while another doesn't, it introduces bias.

However, there are exceptions when we use impressions or clicks instead:

  • When spend data isn't available, but impressions or clicks are.
  • When spend data is available only at a higher aggregation, while impressions or clicks are available daily.
  • When impressions or clicks provide a better measure of media exposure than spend.

Therefore, we recommend using spend as a consistent and actionable metric, except in cases where impressions or clicks better capture media exposure.

Special Case for Email and SMS

For email and SMS, where costs are typically flat due to a SaaS model, we use "email sends" or "SMS sends" instead of spend. This approach better reflects media exposure in these contexts.

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