The Importance of A/B Testing

Not all posts are created equal.

During a social media marketing campaign, you as a marketer are fighting for the attention of consumers, trying to stand out amongst the thousands of messages viewed daily. It can seem that content garnering thousands of post engagements just happen to be the lucky ones that day, chosen by the Facebook algorithm gods to be served to the masses.

If this is truly your perspective on social media success, then you’re wrong.

Producing engaging social media content isn’t a matter of luck, but rather, a science.

Yes, you heard me correctly – we spend time experimenting with the content we craft and deliver to our Facebook audiences. We don’t use focus groups or rely on psychologic research – A/B testing different variations of messaging and imagery to see what resonates with which audience.

Think we’re just full of it? Check out a recent A/B test we conducted with our client, the PEDIGREE Foundation.

The Test

An infographic created for the PEDIGREE Foundation representing the need for dog shelters in the United States.   An infographic created for the PEDIGREE Foundation that illustrates how individuals can help pets in need.

During a month long campaign that combined brand awareness, engagement, and calls to donate, we conducted A/B testing to see what content would resonate with our different test audiences. During the engagement portion of the campaign, we placed an ad behind both of the above infographics in each of the targeted audiences. We set an internal goal to check the performance of these posts daily during the week long life of these posts, and would stop serving the lesser performing post on the third day of the mini campaign.

So, which one do you think created more engagement amongst Facebook users? And did these results vary between the different audiences?

The Results
By Wednesday, we saw that the red infographic was outperforming the blue infographic, despite being given the same audiences and budget.

Infographic Post Engagements – Days 1-3

By being able to test out what content would resonate with the audience, we were able to quickly see what was working without wasting a ton of ad budget. Once we were able to identify this trend, we turned off the ad behind the blue infographic, shifting more funds to the higher performing post, therefore being able to reach more users with our messaging.

Do you have an upcoming campaign and need help determining ways to optimize your ad spend? Our team of social media gurus can help you implement strategic A/B testing experiments for your next ad campaign.