Our journey to better understand the impact of advertising dollars on sales beyond the short run. Operating on a hunch, we ventured to harness the wealth of customer perception data and the best of existing statistical models at Microsoft to deliver a measurement of advertising's long-term impact. The value this exercise would deliver to the business, however, was unprecedented.

Executive Summary

Stemming from a desire to get a more holistic understanding of what our advertising dollars do for our business, we set out on a journey to model the impact of ad dollars on both sales and various brand perceptions in the same model. Historically, Microsoft's marketing analytics practice has been comprised of the following:

  • Purchase intent models - determining the right metrics to track as early indicators of performance and equate the return on investment (ROI) of marketing.
  • Forecasting purchase intent demand - building a forecast of expected product demand, based on key metrics and anticipated marketing spend.
  • Performance monitoring - track and diagnose performance against the forecast to inform and drive decisions during marketing activity.