How Email Testing Can Enhance Other Marketing Efforts

Email marketing is a great tactic for testing whether it is an a/b test or multi-variate. Many email marketing tools have simplified the process of testing through use of randomized groupings and dynamic content which allows you to focus on what is being tested rather than figuring out how to set up those tests.  Another advantage to using email as your testing ground - your subscribers have already shown interest in your product or service simply by opting-in to your email communications!  This makes for an ideal group to test potential new products/services, specials, messaging, and more.  However, what the majority of people fail to do is share those results with other members of the marketing team. What you learn from email testing should not reside only within the email marketing team. Those results should be shared with all team members and disciplines.  These email results can be applied to nearly all marketing channels for an even greater impact.  If your tests show a certain kind of messaging resides with customers, why not apply this information to your landing pages, website content, or even pay-per-click ads so all can benefit.  I'm not saying the results from your email testing will always work in other advertising mediums, but the information should be shared to see if it can provide a greater impact.  If your testing shows current customers are more likely to buy based on a particular type of promotion, you can expect future ones will as well.

Example Multi-Variate Test Using Email:

Here is a sample of a mutli-variate test we did to determine the price, messaging, and headline for a new consumer product launch:

Pricing and Messaging:

We determined the three price points we wanted to test:

  1. $10
  2. $20
  3. $30

We determined four headlines and respective messaging to test:

  1. We've got the best way to a better career.
  2. Get more out of your results by putting it to work.
  3. Let our experienced team help you find the right career.
  4. Jobs can be risky. Finding the right one shouldn't be.

We now had 12 possible scenarios to test the pricing and the messaging about this new product.

[caption id="attachment_31" align="aligncenter" width="295" caption="multi-variate test sample"]multi-variate test sample[/caption]

Each possible scenario was sent out to randomized subscribers. We then used a combination of email analytics, web analytics and sales to determine which one of these variations was the "winner."


Most people might have thought the least expensive product would have out performed the other two, but from an overall sales and transaction standpoint the $20 price point was more successful.  Not only were sales higher, but those who engaged with the email were more likely to react to this messaging.  The pricepoint and message was implemented into the clients' pay-per-click and traditional advertising campaigns to announce their new product.  By testing the pricepoints and associated messaging beforehand, the campaign wound up a huge success!  We even won an award from Marketing Sherpa for best email test campaign!

Originally posted by David Hibbs on 7-21-09