Your customers have clear preferences, but they don’t always tell you about them. To discover those preferences, you need to test. Everything from email subject lines to the phrasing on your landing pages affects how your leads react; testing lets you find out which version your audience prefers. With marketing automation, testing is built in from the ground up, allowing you to focus on your content while the system handles the administration of testing and streamlines the process.
A/B Testing Finds the Best Fit
Split testing, A/B testing, multivariate testing – they’re all terms for the same concept of presenting an audience with multiple versions of your content and watching to see which one they choose. It’s similar to what studios do when they test different versions of a movie ending on sample audiences. Once the studio sees which ending the audience prefers, the director and editors can make creative selections to mirror audience preferences for the movie’s theatrical release.
In marketing, A/B testing plays a key role in discovering what makes your audience respond. Every element of your campaign, including email subject lines, “from” lines, calls to action, buttons, images and text, produces different response rates. With marketing automation software, the tedious work of administering and analyzing the results of tests is automatic. After the software sends different versions of an email to test segments of a larger audience, it automatically sends the mail that receives the best results.
Multivariate Testing: Not Just for Email Campaigns
Conventional marketing only allows A/B testing in some channels because it hasn’t been possible to deliver customized versions of content in other areas. Marketing automation changes that by letting your marketing team test a wide range of elements. Browser cookies allow automation software to serve customized content across more channels, and with that custom content comes the opportunity to test. Find out which home page resonates with each segment of your audience and deliver the winning layout consistently.
To give you an idea of the power of automation for testing, take a look at some of the other marketing elements you can test:
- Home pages
- Landing pages
- Gated and non-gated content
- Site navigation
- Calls to action
The real value of automated A/B testing is the marketing knowledge that it allows you to accumulate over time. With each test, you get a clearer picture of what your audience wants and what they need to make buying decisions. Regular testing means continuous refinement to your marketing strategy. Tastes and markets change over time, but testing lets you anticipate shifts and respond with what your prospects want to see. Because it’s all part of a single marketing automation system, your test results are also scalable, allowing you and your marketing team to communicate in more relevant ways to your growing audience.
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