Why You Should be Performing A/B Testing on Your Marketing Efforts & What to Test
Last updated: March 22, 2021
A/B Testing has been used by marketers for almost a century. According to a Harvard Business Review article, it originated when the statistician and biologist, Ronald Fisher, discovered some of the basics of running an A/B test and randomized controlled experiments. These testing models were then applied to agriculture, medicine, and later marketing.
At Omeda, we believe in the importance of testing, data, and knowing your audience. That is why we have incroporated A/B testing abilities into much of the platform. In our last release, we added an A/B testing element to the Odyssey canvas. Below we detail out the reasons why this testing measure is so widely used and then elaborate on what can be tested.
Why you should test:
A/B Testing is Measurable – So There’s No Debate on the Winner as the Answers are Definitive
When you perform A/B testing, you will be gaining a very clear picture of how effective the communication was to your audience. There will always be a winner between content piece A and content piece B. These results can then set up success for the rest of the campaign as the audience can all begin to receive the “winning” message or content.
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Additionally, It Helps You Make More Effective Decisions and Increases Engagement
Instead of sitting around a table debating headlines, why not test them out? It doesn’t make sense to waste time deliberating on which subject line or headline will win over your audience. Even if you know your audience well, they could gravitate towards a new or a different style than your team might have suspected. Put it to the test and then use it again!
It Can Help Convert a Customer and Increase ROI
A/B testing has been proven effective in finding the strongest route to engaging your audience. When your audience is engaged, there is a stronger chance of conversion and ROI.
A/B Testing is a Way of Performing Marketing Research –and It’s Free and Simple
One of our favorite parts about A/B testing is that it is free. You can set up A/B testing as part of your usual communications and get great insights from the responses. No outside marketing research is needed as you can test things out on your own.
It Works in All Markets – B2B, B2C, Anyone Can Perform A/B Testing
Whether you are engaging an audience of mechanical engineers or veterinarians, A/B testing has been proven effective across all industries. It can help you achieve goals by performing all of the points above. It doesn’t discriminate in different markets.
What you can test:
Testing Subject Lines
Testing subject lines of email communication are up at the top of the list because this is what gains your audiences’ attention first. The subject line has to resonate or give them a reason to open. Through testing the subject lines against each other, you are establishing an avenue towards success.
Testing Buttons and Links in Various Places
Consider getting your audience to subscribe or convert through the different placement of both buttons and links within your email layout to establish which is most successful. Consider testing a button vs. a link. Sometimes, it isn’t just a matter of the copy and the artwork, but the placement of the buttons and links within the layout.
Testing the Artwork & Copy
In having the ability to test one email communication against another, you can experiment with a few different creative aspects to understand which is resonating best with your audience. It’s best practice to choose which component of the creative you want to test and then keep all other variables the same. For example, you may have two different header images to test against each other. In this case, keep all other elements such as subject lines and button placement in the same to understand which your audience prefers. You can also test an email with a header image versus one with a strong line of copy only. Examples of testing can include different body copy, headlines and subheads, header images, layouts, and icons.
Besides considering the structural and creative components of testing, consider the promotion, pricing, and offers. If you prefer not to test that, consider if you try wording the pricing or promotion in two different ways to see which gets the most interaction.
The List Goes On…
The beauty of A/B testing is that this list isn’t comprehensive. You can test almost any component of your email communication to gain the insights you need for a successful campaign.
The A/B testing element was made available in Odyssey after our last release. The A/B test works differently than the Odyssey split element because it will determine a winner in a voyage, and then send the rest of the audience down the winning path. One client already used the A/B test element in a recent campaign to determine the best content to use to convert paid renewals. They wanted to set up a continuous campaign to target any auto-renew paid subscribers that are set to expire in the next sixty days, but already have an expired credit card on file. Before they start the continuous campaign, they set up a static voyage with a group of customers and used A/B testing to test out their email content. This provided them with a clear winner of content to now use and implement in that in their continuous voyage. The winning content had a 51% higher click-through rate which will set them up for success on the continuous voyage.
We hope that you explore the new Odyssey element and run some tests to establish some clear winning content to best engage your audience. A/B testing is also available in both email builder and form builder. As always, if you want any guidance on A/B testing in Odyssey please reach out to your client success manager. If you are looking to start a marketing automation program that utilizes A/B testing and many other elements please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org
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