On a recent call, I briefly tapped into the concept of 'dark social' and the challenges of attribution. I noticed a few eyes glazing over, but bear with me. This topic is crucial for anyone in the digital marketing space.
If you're unfamiliar with the term 'attribution', it essentially means identifying which user actions lead to a desired outcome and assigning a value to each of those actions. In simpler terms, it's about pinpointing where your traffic and conversions originate from.
The term "dark social" might sound mysterious, and that's because it is. It refers to the private and often unseen ways people share content online. This includes direct messaging, emails, private groups, and podcast mentions. The 'dark' in dark social stems from the fact that this type of sharing is 'invisible' or 'dark' to traditional analytics tools.
Dark Social is incredibly effective when it comes to word-of-mouth and recommendation traffic. These private shares can drive significant traffic but are not easily traceable. This is where the challenge lies. Its intimate nature makes it challenging to measure and attribute correctly.
Dark social offers a goldmine of opportunities for businesses to connect with their audience more personally and directly. By understanding the customer's dark social journey and implementing robust tracking strategies, we stand a better chance of linking attribution.
By understanding and leveraging dark social, companies can gain deeper insights, reach new audiences, and enhance their marketing strategies.