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Posts Tagged ‘a/b testing’

Bet on Horses, Not Customer Assumptions: How the Kentucky Derby tested content for relevance with customers

July 23rd, 2015 1 comment

Assumptions can be a dangerous territory — especially when it comes to being relevant with your customers.

When a brand has a large gap between purchases, keeping customers engaged becomes a consistent concern.

The team at the Kentucky Derby faced that issue when they decided to use the weekly newsletter to identify and validate customer segments.

“When we look to grow a brand like the Kentucky Derby, that breadth of engagement is really core to our growth path,” Jeff Koleba, Vice President of Marketing and Programming, Kentucky Derby, said in this session from MarketingSherpa Email Summit 2015.

To solve this issue, Jeff and Kate Ellis, Marketing Analyst, Kentucky Derby, decided to begin segmenting and directing content directly towards the customers who wanted it most. Within its established customer personas, the Derby focused testing on three segments:

  • Social content interests
  • Equine enthusiasts
  • Betting/wagering information

Once they set up segmentation and supported it with relevant content, the team began optimizing for maximum engagement.

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Holidays Ahead: Market with caution

July 16th, 2015 No comments

Every holiday presents both opportunity and danger: you can either engage audiences or you can alienate them. It just depends on if you choose to jump on the seasonal bandwagon and how effectively you make the leap.

The most recent Marketing Experiments Web clinic examines holiday marketing lessons learned, and what you need to do to ensure you take full advantage of seasonal campaigns while dodging pitfalls.  Watch it here.

Consider this test, which has been anonymized.

Background: A large financial institution.

Goal: To convince customers to take out a mortgage or refinance an existing one.

Research question: Which email treatment will generate the highest clickthrough?

Test: A/B sequential test

 

The Straightforward Control

The Control was an email that focuses on low mortgage rates and how to take advantage of them.

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Website Optimization: How a B2B publishing company increased free trial sign-ups by 36.4%

July 6th, 2015 No comments

A popular method to acquire new customers for online subscription models is through free trials. The hope is that by using a service or product, prospective customers can fully experience and appreciate the value you have to offer.

However, before the experience begins, you must first get them to see the value of the trial. After all, it can be a friction- and anxiety-filled process since many trials require credit card information at the time of sign-up.

Increasing the completion rate for the trial sign-up process was one of three steps the Euromoney Institutional Investor team took to revamp its strategy and increase conversions. The team accomplished this through online testing after seeing that 60% of traffic in the funnel did not complete the process.

At MarketingSherpa MarketingExperiments Web Optimization Summit 2014, Ben Eva, Global Head of Conversion Management, Euromoney Institutional Investor, shared three online tests his team used to learn about their customers and to increase that completion rate.

What is the best layout/design of the offer page?                            

Euromoney publishes over 200 online information services — which equals a lot of potential for testing. Because each audience varies, sometimes the same type of test is needed to find the best result for each audience.

Ben shared two tests that revolve around page design and how to best communicate the value of the publications and their free trials.

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The Importance of Customer Centricity in Evolving A/B Testing

June 29th, 2015 2 comments

When we talk about A/B testing, we often think about it on a test-by-test basis. While this singular focus is beneficial, it overlooks testing’s role as an ongoing system for optimization.

At MarketingSherpa Email Summit 2015, Courtney Eckerle, Manager of Editorial Content, MarketingSherpa, sat down with Lauren Wagner, Senior Manager, and Tessa Srebro, Lead Generation and Marketing Associate, both of VolunteerMatch, to discuss how to utilize A/B testing to constantly evolve programs.

Lauren and Tessa’s company, VolunteerMatch, is a nonprofit organization that is the world’s largest volunteering network. It also has an interesting funding model. The company sells a Software as a Service (SaaS) product to companies to help fund its organization and, so far, this model has generated almost $1 billion in social value each year through its work with nonprofits and volunteers. VolunteerMatch is also more than familiar with the benefits of testing, as evidenced by the subject line test it ran with MarketingExperiments.

Watch the excerpt below from the MarketingSherpa Media Center to learn how keeping up with current trends and thinking like a consumer can help evolve your testing and your company.

 

Keep up with current trends and your customers

Keeping up with current customer trends is one of the most important pieces of advice Lauren Wagner gave when asked how to keep a company’s A/B testing constantly evolving. Be sure that you’re keeping up with current trends in the marketplace, but don’t forget to take the time to learn about your customers.

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Does Brand Help or Hinder Conversion? The answer is “yes”

June 18th, 2015 2 comments

Does brand truly drive revenue for every company — even if it’s not Google, Nike or Apple — or is it just a marketing department’s raison d’ê·tre? Is it really as powerful as marketers think it is?

The latest MarketingExperiments Web clinic answers this question with (of course) testing. Be sure to watch it to learn why it’s critical to be thoughtful about how and when you use branding elements.

Consider this anonymized test:

Background: A regional marketing commission.

Goal: To raise awareness of local activities and events, increasing number of travelers and tourist spending in [City].

Research Question: Which sign-up page will generate the most responses?

Test Design: A/B split test

 

The Plain and Simple Control

The Control was a landing page that encouraged people to sign up for a free guide.

 

The New and Improved Treatment

The Treatment added details — font, images and design — that better reflected the brand.

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Landing Page Optimization: An overview of how one site increased leads by 155%

June 15th, 2015 5 comments

Simple, direct and bare. When your company and process is known around the world, a blank page with little competing content can not only work, but it can work really well.

Simplicity is key. Take a look at Google’s homepage:

 

What about new visitors? Imagine coming to this page for the first time, with little to no context of the company. What is this company? If I type something in that text box, for example, where will it take me?

Simplicity is not always a key to effective website optimization.

Leaders must grow comfortable with paradox and nuance. Clarity does not equate with simplicity.  Simplicity does not equate with easy.” — Flint McGlaughlin, On the Difference between Clarity and Simplicity.

Simplicity is the reduction of friction, but clarity is the optimization of the message. A simple message is not necessarily a clear message.

Take a look at a test we ran with a physicians-only social network that allows pharmaceutical companies to conduct survey research and promote products to their audience. The goal of this A/B split test was to identify which microsite would generate the most total leads.

Check out the control below. Can you find the value proposition?

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