WTF is Multivariate Testing?

Working in the digital age means you have a lot of data at your fingertips. Every good campaign is made up of several components, some of which may strike a chord more than others with consumers. But how do you know which pieces are most effective? The answer lies in multivariate testing.


What is Multivariate Testing?

Multivariate testing involves trying out different combinations of your creative to see how they perform. Creators make several different versions of their digital content, then track the results of each to see which one consumers respond to best. The different versions you create can offer varying emphasis on elements such as:

  • Your CTA. In this situation, you might test different languages to find whether a subtle or direct CTA is most effective. 
  • Your design. When it comes to design, you might want to consider testing clean and simple vs. colorful and imaginative. 
  • Your tone. Which resonates most with your audience, a conversational or professional tone? 
  • The amount of information. Play with the amount of information you put into your creative. Sometimes, less information can entice users to visit your website to learn more. 

Once you have enough data to consider, you can see which particular elements and combinations of those elements work best. Once you have that, you can implement the most effective creative — and begin the process again (starting with your new findings, of course!) for your next campaign. 

What Are the Advantages of Multivariate Testing? 

Multivariate testing gives you abundant information as to what is and isn’t working with your creative. With this information, you can continuously optimize your content and give your audience what they really want. 

Multivariate testing substantially reduces the amount of guesswork you have to do and gives you a genuinely accurate look at consumer behavior. It allows you also to see how different content and formal elements work with one another, rather than just considering them singly or in a void.

This is in contrast to a survey, for example, in which respondents report on their behavior. Multivariate testing tracks actual clicks to give you a real sense of how your potential consumers react in response to your marketing goals and materials.

How is Multivariate Testing Different From A/B Testing? 

Multivariate testing, as mentioned above, involves multiple versions of your content, which are dynamically compared to one another to land on the most effective overall campaign. 

A/B testing contrasts two versions of content to help your team understand which one is getting more traction. This testing format can be helpful if your decision is a straightforward one or if you can easily split it between two choices.

Essentially, A/B testing gives you a clear thumbs-up, thumbs-down approach when you have two choices, but it doesn’t let you look at a number of design and content factors and see how they are all interacting with one another. 

What is the Process of Multivariate Testing? 

The process of multivariate testing involves seven steps. 

Step 1: Identify Your Goals

You can’t reach your marketing goals if you don’t have a clear, measurable sense of what they are. Having specific goals in place for your campaign can help you be more efficient in your creative ideation and can save you money throughout production. 

For many marketers, this means identifying key performance indicators (KPIs). It also means being clear about who your target audience is, the platforms you want to run on, and the ad placements you intend to secure, as these details will dictate your video ad specs and style.

Step 2: Gather Historical Learnings

Before you launch your new campaign, use the lessons you’ve learned in previous campaigns: what’s worked for you and, maybe even more importantly, what hasn’t. Even if your campaigns have been different — for example, still images rather than video — you can still glean lessons from what resonated with your core audience.

Step 3: Structure a Testing and Production Plan

What variables are you actually going to test? 

Isolate all the creative concepts you want to explore methodically. Limit your experimentation to one or two variables in each round, lasting one to two weeks, so you can stress-test each of them. You might want to test creative concepts in your spots such as:

  • Actors vs. no actors
  • Live action vs. animation
  • Customer testimonials vs. lifestyle content
  • Product focus vs. brand focus

You can also test creative variables and attributes, including your messaging and value propositions, the type of talent you use, and the locations included in your video production

Now, create a plan for your shoot, bearing those variables in mind. A detailed shot list and granular plan for your production will make it far more efficient! You might be amazed at how much you can pack in during even a short shoot.

Step 4: Capture Your Footage

Now, it’s time for the actual shoot! When you capture footage with all of your variables in mind, you’re giving yourself the building blocks you need to craft a successful campaign.

The aim is to capture footage that can be successfully repurposed in intelligent ways for several different platforms. By planning ahead and using your shot list, you’ll be able to make the most out of your content. 

Step 5: Launch Your Campaign and Monitor Performance

Finally, it’s time for the part you’ve probably been waiting for: actually sharing your content! Once your content is finished, it’s time to begin utilizing it across platforms. 

That means it’s also time to test the different versions of your spots. Start broadly, focusing on high-level concepts, then get more nitty-gritty as you go. Track the performance of different elements over several platforms, identifying all the winners in your concepts and letting go of elements that are falling short. 

Step 6: Iterate

Once you have all the winning elements at hand, you can use them to create targeted and memorable creative. Post-production can be fast and fun, using your well-planned production footage to turn out new assets efficiently and quickly without having to go back and shoot more. 

Step 7: Repeat

Every time you put out a new spot, you grow your library of data. That means you can keep continuously improving your current campaign on all of its platforms, using your expansive data to inform and improve future campaigns.

Elevate Your Multivariate Testing With QuickFrame

Crafting a winning video marketing campaign can be a challenge — but it’s one we’re ready to help you take on. 

Here at QuickFrame, we use data to inform nearly everything we do. Our AI-powered Video Vitals technology analyzes the content of your videos as it relates to their performance. It helps you understand all the reasons your videos resonate, so you can do more of what works.

Are you ready to start optimizing your video marketing strategy? Contact us to get started today.

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