So, you’ve created the greatest marketing video of all time. But how can you tell if it’s actually serving the purpose you want it to? In comes the magical power of the A/B test. We’ve got your guide to how to use the A/B test method to improve your video marketing effectiveness.
What is A/B Testing?
Simply put, A/B testing (also known as split testing) is the process of changing a single aspect about an ad in order to try to increase the results of your campaign. Basically, you want your ad to do the best that it can. If changing some aspect of your video could increase its effectiveness, you’d want to know, right? Conducting an A/B test is a simple way to find which versions of your video are the most effective.
According to Steelhouse, A/B testing is the most commonly used testing method for conversion rates. And the data shows it’s the most effective. Simple tweaks tested through A/B testing can dramatically improve the results of your campaign if you’re willing to take the time to do it right. Need some idea of where to start? Here are some tips on conducting your A/B test:
Tip #1: Understand what you’re testing for.
While this may seem like an obvious tip, you’d be amazed at how many marketers forget to clarify what goal they want to test for. With a clear understanding of what you’re trying to accomplish, you’ve set yourself up to fail from the start.
Take some time with your team to understand what the exact goals of your campaign are. Are you looking to get more views? Do you want to improve your CTR (click through rate). Would you like to increase your video view time, or the amount of social shares you get? Decide which goal makes sense for you.
Now you might be saying, “But we want to accomplish all of these things!” And you can. Just not all with one video. Each video should have one specific goal in mind. One video can’t complete your entire marketing agenda. Decide what goal makes the most sense for your most urgent cause, and track that data more closely than the rest.
Tip #2: Decide which variable you’re going to isolate.
Now that your teams knows what it’s working towards, you can decide which variable you’d like to A/B test. Remember that when you A/B test, you are testing for only one variable at a time. It’s called an A/B test, not an A/B/C/D test, for a reason. Isolating a single variable allows you to accurately tell which variable is affecting your results to what extent.
So, which variable should you test? A good way to start would be to look at the data from the video your planning on testing. What result aren’t you achieving? Are people not watching your video as long as you’d like? Potentially isolating what’s not working gives you a good indication of potential changes you could make. Still don’t know where to start? Here are some variables you could A/B test:
- Video titles
The video title is the first thing many will see about your video, even before it starts playing. Changing the video title to something catchier or to the point could draw in more consumers.
Similar to a video title, headlines for an in-stream video ad give your audience an idea of what they’re getting into. A punchy headline entices your potential consumers to give your video a shot.
- Body copy
How are you explaining your video ad to consumers through copy? Are you giving them a long, drawn-out description of your company, or getting right to the point? Is your copy boring? Change up the content and the length.
- Copy within the video
If copy appears within the video, you better be sure that it’s entertaining. You don’t want consumers reading a novel throughout your commercial. Try switching up the phrasing, or eliminate it all together.
- Video thumbnails
The thumbnail for your video has a lot more impact than you think. A proper thumbnail selection can create a huge upturn in the amount of click-throughs and video views. Choose wisely.
- CTAs (Calls to Action)
CTAs are how you get people to take action once they’ve watched your videos. The right CTA drives people to act; the wrong one makes them click away. Change what your CTA is asking, or try placing it at a different point in the video. Who knows? Maybe a CTA at the beginning is just what you needed.
- Length of the video
Maybe your video’s so long that customers feel bored and click off. Or maybe it’s so short that people don’t receive the information they need. The only way to know is to play with the length and see how it affects your retention rate.
- What promotion (if any) is offered
If the promotion you’ve chosen doesn’t resonate with your audience, you won’t see results, no matter how amazing your video is. Change your promotion or the wording of it and see if you can hit your consumers a little closer to home.
Believe it or not, music has a huge impact on our decision-making process. The right change of music could subconsciously influence consumers to make the decision you want them to. With great power comes great responsibility.
- Content of the video
If none of these sounds like your issue, maybe your video content isn’t all that great. It sounds harsh, but what might look great to you may not do it for your consumers. Try changing up the narrative within your video to see if consumers connect to a different kind of story.
Tip #3: Make sure your consumer groups are random.
All of this work will be for naught if you’re not sending these varied ads to the same audience. Like we said you can only test one variable at a time, and if you’re changing the video, you can’t be playing with your audience, too. Sending both ads to the same audience provides you with the most accurate insight into what’s working and what’s not.
What’s important to remember is that you could run multiple A/B tests for multiple variables and find that your original ad performed the best out of them all. Sometimes, that’s just how the cookie crumbles. But hey, at least you know then that you started with some quality content!
Would you like to learn more about running an A/B test, or about any other video marketing topic? Reach out to IDR for additional information and answers to all your questions. You’ll discover why we’re Orange County’s premier producer of TV commercials, infomercials, and online videos for a wide range of businesses, organizations, and brands.