Posted May. 30 2018, 06:07:53 pm

Elissa Huck

Growth marketing helps marketing teams prove their impact on revenue. But how do those teams optimize performance? A/B testing. High-performing teams know that A/B testing trumps best practices every time.

What Is A/B Testing in Marketing?

Before we jump into why A/B testing is better than best practices: you may be wondering what I’m talking about.

Marketers use A/B testing to learn how their audience will react to different variables.  A/B testing requires creating two different versions of the same piece of content. Marketers change one element and test which version performs better.

You can A/B test things like color, placement, wording, and more. Even small changes can make a big difference in views and conversions.

No best practice standard should go untested.

Recently, Standing Partnership A/B tested two landing pages:

  • One that was text only
  • One with a bold banner image

Best practices might suggest that imagery would perform better. (Especially since this client was targeting a younger audience!) But the data told a different story. We saw higher conversion rates on the text-only landing pages. In this specific case, the photo-less landing page outperformed the image-heavy one.

Why A/B Testing in Marketing is Better Than Best Practices

Below are three reasons why A/B testing trumps best practices:

1) A/B testing focuses on your audience.

Every company has different inbound marketing needs and unique audiences. What works for one company might not work for another. Many best practices use a one size fits all approach. Testing what works for your target audience and company is much better than following general best practices. Your data is always a better source of truth than some “expert” on the Internet!

2) A/B testing adds quantifiable data to the mix.

Best practices are subjective and contradictory. You can find an article to support almost ANY best practice point you want to make. Experiments and A/B tests give you real numbers to support your marketing decisions. These measurable improvements can help you make a solid case for your growth marketing plan to senior leaders.

3) A/B testing helps cut down on internal politics.

Sometimes whoever has the loudest room or biggest title just “wins” the debate. People end up going with their gut or the tried and true best practices that the most senior person likes. But A/B testing helps you test other people’s ideas, even if they don’t have the political sway. A/B testing lets everyone on your team give feedback on how to improve your marketing materials.

A/B testing is just one element of creating a marketing team that drives revenue growth. If you’re interested in proving your impact, Download The Ultimate Growth Marketing Playbook!

 

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