The campaign managers tested multiple drafts of the same email to single out the best performing copy. Subject lines were tested extensively to zero in on the money shot.
While formal sounding subject lines showed average results, surprisingly, a subject line that contained mild profanity — such as "Hell yeah, I Like Obamacare" — was a distinct winner. Subject lines with just the first name of the recipient and nothing else, did well also. However, the home run among the subject line tests was hit by the famous "Hey" series of emails. The casual tone of the subject line combined with the President's name in the Sender column, gave this version a power-packed punch that helped it beat all others.
In total, Obama's email marketing campaign alone netted him $690 million dollars in campaign funding. Not shabby at all.
Duolingo — Learning Languages by Trial and Error
Duolingo is probably one of the most popular language learning apps available today. Besides offering free language lessons, one of the key attractions of the app is its extensive gamification of the process of teaching new languages.
Most apps and games embrace A/B testing to improve their features and usability, with the eventual aim of making more money off of their users. This is where Duolingo differs from other apps and websites. Unlike most other brands, Duolingo does not use A/B testing to sell more language lessons or to upgrade users to paid plans etc.
Instead, the company focuses its A/B testing capabilities on two primary goals that raise user experience to the next level. These are
- Increase time spent by each learner on the app
- Improve and accelerate language learning outcomes for learners
Luis Von Ahn, founder of Duolingo calls it "teaching languages based on proven learning patterns."
A/B testing has offered Duolingo insights in language learning that it may never have known otherwise. For example, the Spanish language does not have a gender neutral pronoun "it." So when native Spanish speakers learn languages like English which use the word "it" extensively, early learners stumbled and eventually quit the course in frustration.
Rohan Ayyar is the regional marketing manager for India at SEMrush. His blog, The Marketing Mashup, covers digital marketing from the perspective of B2B, B2C, lead generation, mobile marketing, SEO, social media, content marketing, database marketing including predictive analytics, and conversion rate optimization. In addition, he'll look at emerging marketing technology and how marketers can use it. Reach Ayyar at firstname.lastname@example.org.