No experienced business development manager would dispute that internet advertising has seen explosive growth. In the 90’s, when the term “online advertising sales” was still relatively incomprehensible and static banner ads ruled the day, it was probably impossible for most ordinary mortals to foresee the Adland landscape of 2013. We now live in an era in which what was unimaginable twenty years ago – flamboyantly interactive cross-platform commercial experiences – is commonplace. But has effectiveness testing kept pace with advertising innovation?
Writing in iMedia Connection, Life Street Media’s CEO and co-founder Mitchell Weisman says the answer is, bluntly, “no.” We’re stuck in methodology that belongs to the era of Dawson’s Creek and Melrose Place. Generally speaking, most marketers reserve a little inventory to set up test panels or sample groups, who are then invited to give their verdict on the new concepts contained in the inventory. This method is used on everything from TV show line-ups to the quality of online ad campaigns. If you’re a business development manager and you recognize this practice, Weisman has some uncompromising words. He writes:
“Testing in this form is painful, slow and expensive. As a result, many elements of ads that should be tested – because they clearly impact results and revenue – are not tested. As a result, too many decisions in online advertising are based on gut and intuition instead of hard testing and sound results.”
The Life Street answer
But he has a solution which harnesses cutting edge technology to overcome the shortcomings of limited inventories. Life Street Media’s “RevJet” revenue maximization platform doesn’t just test a fragment of inventory, it tests every available impression. And it does so again and again and again.
The platform tests different dimensions of the same visual objects, including headlines, background colors, fonts, images and calls-to-action. At one and the same time, it tests logical objects too, like bidding and targeting algorithms, as well as trafficking decisions. Forget allocating a mere portion of inventory for testing; RevJet can test the lot across multiple dimensions, simultaneously (it’s officially called “Iterative High Velocity Testing” or IHVT).
According to Weisman, the results are astonishing. He says, “[D]ozens of tests are often conducted on a given campaign, resulting in hundreds of percentage points improvements in yield conversions.”
No business development manager would scoff at that.