TESTING: When A/B Tests Attack (your results)

The Agitator

In yesterday’s post we talked about when A/B tests show results, but all that’s really there is noise. Today, we’ll flip that on its head: sometimes an A/B test shows no result, but there’s an important finding just below the surface.

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The Quick and Dirty Guide to A/B Testing Your Donation Page

Nonprofit Marketing Blog

Enter A/B testing. Although testing might seem a little scary if you’ve not done it, there are simple tests you can perform to ensure you’re getting the most out of your online donation pages. Decide which variable you want to test (see “What to Test” below).

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Testing Your Donor Identities

The Agitator

You must test. But if you will be sullied by solutions that require filthy lucre, stop reading when this says “ Pre-Test Tool.”. The central challenge of testing identities is that they are often self-reported. So now, we test? This is a painful, laborious process.

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Roll out some testing to liven up those Summer months


We run a lot of multivariate tests on donation landing pages throughout the year. Frankly, I’m always urging our clients to run even more—since the more things they test, the more they learn (and the more money they raise!). This is the time to shake things up a little.

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The Curse of Testing Illiteracy

The Agitator

Spurred on by my post The Curse of Fundraising Innumeracy , reader Mikaela King over at the National Geographic Society decided to “dog pile” on with what she termed “another illiteracy” in our sector — testing illiteracy.

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Ask and Answer - A Tale of Two Oranges

Social Media Bird Brain

Two Oranges by Carolyn Texera Sometimes it isn't a question of apples and oranges, but a question of two different flavors of oranges. not-for-profits clementine nuance Business not for profits A/B testing valencia ask Small nonprofit orangesThe small nonprofit where I'm currently contracting couldn't decide whether the solicitation letter they were sending out should have the ask upfront or in the middle.

Testing 101: 4 Steps for Optimizing Your Fundraising Approach

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You never know what marketing and fundraising strategies and tactics will work best until you test them. That is why testing is a must for nonprofits. We’re doing our causes a disservice each time we don’t test — potentially leaving money, actions, and opportunities on the table.

Test your fundraising instincts

Nonprofit Marketing Blog

Which Test Won? is a fun resource that regularly highlights A/B tests of emails, landing pages, and more. This week, Which Test Won? released their 2013 Email Testing Hall of Fame , a showcase of tests that nonprofit fundraisers can learn from.

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Acquisition: Direct Mail Testing – Part 1

The Agitator

Tom’s post on the Obama campaign’s email testing prompts me to weigh in on one of the least understood and woefully mis-practiced skills in the direct response fundraiser’s repertoire – direct mail testing. Sadly, most testing becomes more habitual than strategic or purposeful.

Direct Mail Test Results

The Agitator

The Agitator has been featuring various A/B tests as reported on Which Test Won ? So far their tests have all been of the online variety. Here’s their first example of a head-to-head direct mail test … in this case, centered on the offer. The test was conducted by Nebraska’s NPR station, and we have heaps of public TV & radio readers … so here it is.

Acquisition: Direct Mail Testing – Part 2

The Agitator

One of the biggest pitfalls in direct mail testing is the ‘baby & the bathwater’ problem. The problem occurs when an organization or its consultant creates and mails a test package with numerous test elements. There is a better, empirical way.

Which Test Won?

The Agitator

Which Test Won? is a nifty e-newsletter that features results of a variety of head-to-head tests in the online arena — homepage design, copy tests, offer tests, social marketing, etc. They recently announced their first batch of ‘winners’ from a group of tests supplied by over 100 marketers. What you’ll see when you click here is a series of categories, usually with a first and second place winner (i.e.,

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Fundraising Evolution – Accelerated Learning: Testing & Research

Donor Power Blog

On the heels of Dirk Rinker chiming in on a recent post here , I thought it might make sense to devote some time to a topic that Dirk is a specialist in the area of - Research. . We all test, or we all should be testing. Step 1: Test. Maybe Mango, test.

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Mixed Links for Nonprofit Communicators

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Have a speaking engagement coming up? If you like to share video on Twitter, you’ll be happy to know that now Twitter Makes it Easier to Share the Right Part of a Live Video with Launch of ‘Timestamps.’ Do you have questions about A/B testing?

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3 Powerful Tools to Help You Optimize Your Nonprofit Website

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Or, you can refine and test your own website. Crazy Egg lets you see what your website visitors are doing with heat maps (a picture of where people click on your website), scroll maps (shows how far down the page people are scrolling to help determine where they abandon your page) and more.

Still Time for this Year-End Tweak

Getting Attention

Just take a look at how overstuffed your inbox is right now with requests for donations from so many orgs, plus all the other regular and season-specific stuff. Here’s how to test your email subject lines: Note: Most email providers have a built-in A/B testing tool.

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Raise more money online with a great headline


If you could change just one thing on your website’s donation page and get a 50% lift in the conversion rate, you’d probably do it in a heartbeat. To understand what a lift of that magnitude could mean for your online fundraising program, imagine your donation page is converting 12% of visitors, comprised of 10 donations a day averaging $50 ($500 daily revenue). And getting the answer is easy with A/B testing.

Which Story to Share? (G.R.E.A.T. Stories)

Getting Attention

Sometimes we have so many strong stories available that it’s hard to select the best ones to feature in a specific campaign. At other times, it seems impossible to source the right story or find a fitting one to harvest from the story bank.

Download Your Multi-Channel Fundraising Campaign Worksheet [FREE]

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Or if you have been taking donations through your website, but want to take it to the next level, we have tips on how to optimize your webpage, run A/B tests, and segment your email list.

Mixed Links for Nonprofit Communicators – June 15, 2018

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

And this might help too – Facebook Experiments with A/B Testing for Page Posts. If you operate on a fiscal year, you should Checklist Your Way to End the Fiscal Year Strong. Roxi Morris reminds you to Tie Donors To Your Mission, Not A Tax Incentive.

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3 Quick Tips on Creating Social Media Video that Stands Out

J Campbell Social Marketing

Social media video continues its dominance over all other social media content, solidifying its role as a critical and crucial element in any nonprofit digital marketing plan. . Google found that more than half the people who watch YouTube videos posted by nonprofits go on to make a donation.

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Searching Your Nonprofit’s Web Site—A vs. B Makes a Huge Difference

Getting Attention

I’m a devoted participant in Anne Holland’s blog, Which Test Won. This week’s test pinpoints the best way to design the search box on your nonprofit’s website. Which do you think works best, A vs. B? This is such a tiny difference.”

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BEYOND CUTE: Why Nonprofits Should Try Emoji In Their Digital Marketing

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

There’s even a World Emoji Day – July 17. Here’s how a few nonprofits cleverly celebrated: Happy #WorldEmojiDay ! How would you express the idea of a library using only emoji? A #HabitatforHumanity emoji story: ????????????????? A/B test if you can.

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8 ways your organization is sabotaging its landing pages


I’ve encountered every single one of them in my 7 years as a nonprofit consultant. Here is a summary of the operational behaviors that can sabotage landing page performance and some strategies for dealing with them: HiPPOs (Highest Paid Person’s Opinion) decide : Do you let the arbitrary opinion of the highest paid person in your organization (or marketing team) determine what goes live on your web pages instead of data-driven insight? Part 1.

10 Email Resolutions for the New Year


While we’re all guilty of making some email mistakes (too long of a subject line, multiple asks in one email) we’re always looking for ways to improve. Anyone can send emails but the key to having a great email program: high deliverability rate. Lucky for you, EveryAction has a study on how you can improve your deliverability - you can access it here. Make sure to test emails on as many screen sizes and devices as you can get your hands on. Testing.

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5 Ways to Effectively Use Your CRM


A CRM is no different than any other tool that your nonprofit uses, in the sense that there is a difference between using it well enough to get by, and really getting the most bang for your buck. Utilize A/B testing for more impactful emails.

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Boost online response by optimizing your donation landing pages


without spending a nickel on more e-mails or Care2 names. Of course, your mileage may vary, but if you optimize your landing pages, you’re pretty likely to increase your conversions and your revenue, even if you have to pay a consultant to help you.

Get Attention With Your Next Multichannel Campaign

Getting Attention

For example, if you’re releasing an email appeal, post the same call to action on one of your social media channels for a short time after the email goes out. Caveat: Since each channel has a different tone, style, and posting length, it’s important that you repurpose calls to actions that are appropriate for each channel. A/B test your email subject line before sending. Say you are launching a national campaign and you have 10,000 email addresses on your list.

Watch Your Pictures!

The Agitator

I subscribe to “Which Test Won” — a feed that proselytizes for A/B testing — both for the fun of testing my own instincts (and often disagreeing with their analysis) and just to remind myself that tweaks of copy, design and imagery, based upon testing, indeed matter. Here’s a recent test (actually a replay from 2009) that caught my eye, literally, because it was a test of two images.

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The 5 Questions Nonprofits Always Ask Me About Fundraising Emails

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Some about content, but a lot about mechanics. A good email appeal is part art and part mechanics. It dials up your emotions and proffers giving as a fix to outrage, fear or sadness, or as a display of loyalty, pride or duty. BOTTOM LINE: Test times for yourself.

Proof Point #2: Email Subject Line Length Matters, SOMETIMES

Getting Attention

The best email subject lines are short [50 characters or less]…and provide the reader with a reason to explore your message further. What’s a nonprofit communicator to do? Are hit with a way-off marketing request.

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18 Email Subject Line Strategies That Will Increase Your Open Rates

Wild Woman Fundraising

Has it been a few weeks or a few months since you sent out your last one? Or there’s 4 ways to advocate for your cause, and you’re offering a free pdf about this! There’s no coincidence that this word happens a lot in movie trailers. A new monthly donor!

Direct Mail Is Here to Stay (and How)


Knowing the methodology has evolved, how do we cut through email clutter and reach donors in a personal way via their mailbox? We worked with external vendors, so as you can imagine there were a ton of spreadsheets involved. When I started at EveryAction I knew one of the first things I wanted to work on was a direct mail planner to make some of that work easier. There’s often a lot of back and forth in direct mail. Direct mail can be a bit of a dinosaur.

GUIDE: Using Donor Personas to Maximize Your Nonprofit Fundraising


It’s no secret that storytelling in the digital age is essential for nonprofits , but the efficacy of stories depends largely on how clearly and strategically they’re communicated to each unique segment of your audience, also sometimes known as a persona.

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7 Online Donation Page Mistakes to Avoid

Fundraising 123

Has it been a while since you''ve updated your organization''s online donation page? When a donor goes to your donation form from your email appeal or website, do they feel like they have been transported to a different planet? A donation page that looks like your other campaign materials and your nonprofit''s website makes your donation experience familiar and seamless. Lack of testing.

Your Boredom is a Bad Way to Measure Success

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

I get this question a fair amount, and it came up in the Direct Mail for Small Nonprofits E-Clinic this week: Once we find the voice and style that works for us, how much do we need to get creative every month? Getting creative is NOT a high value goal in direct mail. (I

Mixed Links for Nonprofit Marketers

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Nancy Schwartz talks about A/B testing for websites and what a big difference tiny changes can make. Take a moment to answer their brief 4-question survey, NTEN 2012 Communication Mix. If you had busy week like I did, relax and enjoy some Mixed Links!

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Wanted: A Theory of How to Activate Multiple Cause Marketing Campaigns

Cause Related Marketing

In this season of the year, it’s easy for a retailer to be involved in two or three or even more cause promotions at the same time. Case in point is this recent weekly flyer from a local grocery chain with 24 outlets called Fresh Market. Got a theory?

A Little Hair of the Dog

The Agitator

But it took a for-profit to give an interesting example of a next logical step in the identity process: Tito’s Vodka for Dog People (which I learned about through the Neuromarketing blog , to give credit where it’s due). This test was for a large disease organization.

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But Why?

Ann Green

You’ll answer a question, and she’ll respond with “but why?” A lot of our communication isn’t focused on why something is important. As you work on your messages, pretend your donor is a four-year-old who keeps asking “but why?” Give a specific example.

Is September the new December?

Sea Change Strategies

A research study by Google shows that in 2012 the number of donation-related searches was 30 percent higher in September than it was in August. 2) Create a compelling “Why Give” section on your site that shows your impact. . Here’s a great example from charity: water.

How to get mobile donors to convert


For most nonprofits, there’s been a steady growth in the use of smart phones and tablets by visitors to their websites. This has led to a lot of consternation as organizations wrestle with the challenge of providing a better user experience for site visitors on smaller screens.

EMAIL: The King of the Digital Hill

The Agitator

Jesse Littlewood, a campaigner and digital strategist who’s helped build Common Cause’s impressive digital advocacy and fundraising efforts from 250,000 supporters to over 1 million in 36 months while yielding millions of dollars in small, individual gifts. Jesse’s recommendations, delivered in a webinar at Harvard’s Shorenstein Center on Media Politics and Public Policy , can be found here: Five Reasons Why Nonprofit Media Should Ask Their Audience for Support via Email More Often.

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