In an information cluttered world, clients must streamline their research testing methodology in order to reach fast, meaningful decisions about their businesses. The research process has shifted from lengthy, expensive black box to real-time and mobile. The industry is thinking about research testing much differently, because the speed of business is changing. Gone are the days when people have to wait days for user research. The deliverable has been streamlined to be more efficient, thus lowering costs. The value and expense has traditionally been around a deliverable, but now technology has changed the game by bringing the most valuable pieces – the data and analysis – to the forefront.

Any time you’re developing a product or service, you start with an insight, which is enfolded in a unique selling proposition, which gives you your business compelling differentiators. From there, you develop your benefit details and support claims, which let consumers know why they should choose you over competitors. All of that is wrapped up in branding, marketing, packaging, and paid media. Here is some advice about developing your creative testing strategy, from the “How to Bring Creative Testing to Market” webinar put on by SurveyMonkey.

Developing Your Approach

What should you think about when you’re developing your creative testing method?

  1.     Have a valid sample source – Make sure that the data is high quality so there are checks on the data. Some clients want to leverage data derived from a panel (a group of people that a company has recruited to take surveys) with social media data. Understand the context of your data, and know that social media is a biased source. From TGS: If you are evaluating an existing product or service, your social media contacts can be a great place to start.  If you are testing a new concept, you are better off creating an unknown social sample through tools such as Facebook ads and Google customer surveys.
  1.     Defining Key Success Metrics – Metrics are everything, and it’s all about choosing the metrics that make the most sense for your goals. From TGS: Defining what success means from the beginning will help identify the right tools to measure success.
  1.     Efficient but Effective Analysis – Only look at the data you need and make it streamlined, then make decisions based on that. From TGS: There can often be extraneous data or qualitative feedback; it’s important to make sure you pay attention to the nuggets of information that are true insights, not just commentary.
  1.     Focus on Significant data – Data overload is happening everyday. Think about only focusing on the the data you need from a particular data source. No more, no less. From TGS: Make sure you are collecting and analyzing the right data, not all data is good data, and to make sound decisions you must be sure the source is reliable and there are enough sources to be representative of your customers/constituents.
  1.     Move away from “horse race” – This refers to the idea that something “wins.” This concept may be clean and great, but we live in a world where we can run inexpensive tests. A much more iterative, agile learning approach should be the mindset to have while creative testing. From TGS: Don’t one and done on testing.  Make sure you are going back to the source and testing how the changes you made affect acceptance and understanding.  You’ll be surprised at the new insights you gather with every additional round of testing.

By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to mastering creative testing and winning clients and customers.