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From the author of Multivariate Testing

Multivariate Testing

One of the strengths of Internet marketing is that it all happens on computers, and that makes it possible to run tests to see which ads do better than others. It’s like having your own marketing laboratory and you get to be the mad scientist. The benefit is that you get better results and better profits, so long as you approach it systematically and track your results. Not everybody’s cut out for that, and not everyone is diligent about it, so many people miss out on these benefits. But if you are willing to do it, you gain a competitive advantage for your business by doing so.

What’s Multivariate Testing?

Many people who run Facebook ads don’t create alternate versions. But the possibilities are limitless; you can change the ad copy, or just one word in the ad copy. Same goes for the headline. There are probably five different images you could test for any one ad idea. So, if you have just two different ideas for each ad element (headline, image, body copy), then you would have to create eight ads to test all the different combinations. If you have five images, three headlines, and three body copy versions, that means you need 45 different ads to test all the combinations. That sounds like a lot of work, doesn’t it? Is it worth it? Let’s talk about the financial benefits.

How Much Cheaper Does It Make Your Ads?

In my experience, testing multiple ads can cut your click and fan acquisition cost in half. So I’d say, yes, it’s worth it.

For example, I was able to bring the cost for promoting my The Like Economy book down from $1 to 30 cents per click. I helped a B2B business get its cost per fan down from $1.98 to $1.28. I decreased a B2C campaign’s original cost per fan from 81 cents to 32 cents.

Figure 3 shows the stats from eight similar but different ads. Note that the CPC varies from 52 to 79 cents. One is 34 percent cheaper than the other. That means your ad budget could get you 50 percent more clicks with the cheapest one.

In my experience, simply disciplining yourself to create alternate versions of ads is the most important aspect of this. You increase your chances that at least one of the ads will resonate with your target audience. That means you’re much more likely to find a high click-through rate ad that lowers your cost per click or per fan.

How Do You Do It?

The easiest way to do it is to use a service like Optim.al, but they only work with clients that spend $10,000 or more per month. Inevitably, there will be a low cost provider for these services that smaller businesses can use. But until then, simply map out the combinations manually, try to keep it down to from 5 to 15 ad versions, and create them manually. Create one ad, then from there click on create a similar ad to create the variations. Once you start creating them in Facebook, the whole process shouldn’t take more than a half hour.

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