SMS Marketing Best Practices

What is A/B Testing for Text Message Marketing?

AB Testing for Text Message Marketing

Years ago, Tatango launched support for A/B testing. A/B testing allows text message marketers to test different versions of a text message on small portions of their subscriber database simultaneously, allowing them to see which version of a text message performs better. Once a clear winner is determined, Tatango allows users to confidently send the higher performing text message to the remaining subscribers who weren’t included in the A/B test.

While we call it A/B testing, it’s not really a binary function; Tatango allows marketers to test up to four different versions of a text message at once. You have complete control over the percentage of your subscriber database that gets your text message marketing test.

For example, if you have 3 million mobile subscribers and you want to test three different versions of a text message on 20 percent of your database, you can easily do that. In that scenario, Tatango sends the first version of your text message to 200,000 of your mobile subscribers, the second version to another 200,000, and the third version to another 200,000. Once the highest performing text message of the three has been determined, a Tatango user can easily send the winning message to the remaining 2.4 million mobile subscribers who weren’t part of the test. With Tatango, you get the ability to test and remain in full control at all times.

What types of things should you be testing in your text messages?

  • Message Type: You don’t always have to send an SMS message. Try testing the performance of an MMS message compared to an SMS message. If you want to try something more sophisticated, you can compare RCS messaging against SMS and MMS.
  • Subject Lines: With an MMS message, you get the option to test different versions of your subject line. For example, try including the brand name in the subject line, the offer, or a teaser to the offer. In an RCS message, you can adjust the auto-responses and carousel options to determine how complicated the system should be.
  • Media Content: With an MMS or RCS message, you can include an image, a video, or even a GIF. Try testing different variations of one media type against each other, or test one media type against another to see which one performs better with your mobile subscribers.
  • Message Content: Every little piece of copy in your text messages can have a big impact on the overall performance of the message. Try replacing longer words in your text messages with short words, replacing shorter words with longer words, or using abbreviations, all caps, or all lowercase.
  • Message Layout: Layout is commonly overlooked in text message marketing. Trying including line breaks in your text messages, or try moving around parts of your message to see where they perform best. Offer unique information with different formatting: coupon expiration dates, promotional images, or sale numbers, for example. These things could make a big difference.
  • Offer: Try testing different offers in your text messages to see which ones perform better for your mobile subscribers. Even something as simple as lowering the price or adding an incentive can significantly increase the performance of a text message.
  • Call to Action: Need your mobile subscribers to click on a hyperlink or take some sort of action within your text message? Try using different versions of your call to action within the text message and see which one gets more of your mobile subscribers to take action.

If you’re interested in learning more about A/B testing for text message marketing or in setting it up yourself, don’t hesitate to contact Tatango’s sales team. If you’re an existing Tatango customer, contact your account manager to learn how to activate A/B testing for your account.

If you have other questions or concerns, feel free to browse our free text message marketing resources. If you have a more pressing concern or question,  contact us directly.

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