Know Your ABTs: 3 Testables for Email Marketers
"EVERYBODY GETS A TEST!" Matt Byrd yelled, channeling his inner Oprah Winfrey. He's right to be excited—testing different parts of email marketing is essential, and he laid out a number of different paths to success in Nov. 4's Direct Marketing IQ Brunch & Learn webinar, "7 Email Tests to Run Today (and Tomorrow)." With almost infinite variables in any email campaign, it can be tough to know where to begin. Luckily, Matt Byrd—the senior email marketing manager at Cambridge, Mass.-based email testing and analytics provider Litmus—has seven categories (and tips for each) to help get you rolling.
Right off the bat, it's important to remember that "testing is about finding what works for your own audience." Just because one particular strategy is billed as "Best Practice," doesn't necessarily mean that it's going to be effective in your individual campaign. Even though boosting open rates and clickthroughs is good, the end goal should always be conversions.
"The latest stat out there is that email has an average of 4,300 percent ROI," said Byrd, "but it also has a GAZILLION percent ROR (Return on Relationship)." If those two stats aren't reason enough to start testing your email campaigns, then we're not sure what is.
There are two basic testing methods: A/B Testing and Multivariate Testing. In A/B Testing, you're sending two different versions of the same email with one thing changed, while in Multivariate Testing you might have many different versions of an email, with many combinations of things changed.
No matter which type of testing you go with, be methodical! "Don't just test for the sake of testing, or because 'testing' is the cool buzzword," Byrd cautions. The point of testing is to get to know your audience better—and in the long run, how that information can better your business practices.