The ability to test and adapt your advertising is one of the most significant benefits of digital advertising. It may seem a bit early to discuss the fourth quarter and holiday shopping seasons, but you must test your creative strategies during the summer months to build optimized campaigns in advance.

Wait too long to test, and you will end up burning through your budget in the heat of the busiest shopping season of the year. Instead, plan ahead, and adapt your creative techniques for top performance.

The following is an in-depth exploration of the key reasons and approaches to test creative this summer.

What Should I Be Testing in Terms of Creative?

The following are some specific examples of elements to test in your campaign creative:

  • Value Proposition: Promotional success is achieved with a compelling value proposition that defines the benefits that resonate with your target market. While your buyer personas should identify needs, motives and interests of your audience, it is hard to completely know which creative messages resonate without testing several variations.
  • Discount Offers: In the cluttered online market, promotional inducements are often necessary to stand out. Discounts work, but you need to find the right hooks and delivery that motivates the desired response from your market. There is real science behind the interest and impact of discounts, and testing helps you hone in on valued offers.
  • Text & Button Colors: Text and button design and color schemes influence action. The right color combinations attract attention and leverage psychology. Test different text and button colors to learn which schemes drive clicks and conversions.
  • Short-Form Video versus Long-Form Video: There is no question your brand can benefit from the power of video content that online audiences crave. What is in question is whether your particular market responds better to short-form or long-form videos. Snapchat and Instagram stories have contributed to increased interest in short-form, but you can test quick-hitters against longer story-driven concepts on Facebook and other platforms.
  • Ad Formats: Each delivery channel offers multiple ad forms. Test each format to figure out which ones click with your market.

Small but Effective Winning Creative Examples

You can learn from the success of other advertisers to reinforce your efforts to optimize results. The following are a few data points to illustrate winning creatives:

  • Buttons: One lead generation client achieved a 48 percent higher conversion rate by adding a button on calls to action.
  • Color Adjustments: By testing and honing colors, clients achieve 200 percent more from their ad spend, along with a 32 percent higher clickthrough rate and 27 percent better cost-per-click efficiency.

Conclusion

The importance of quarter four to your annual revenue and bottom-line performance means you can't afford to take anything for granted. Creative testing eliminates guesswork and affirms what works. Budget for testing in the summer to avoid the pressure to throw a lot of money at the wall in quarter four! 

For more insight, read USA Today boosts subscriptions by 106% with promotional offers and call tracking!

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