Testing ads/copy before product is available

5 replies
What are some ethical ways to test ads, copy, VSLs, funnels, etc before the actual product is available for shipment?

I have a big gap of 2 months before production is complete and would like to use that time to optimize the marketing as much as possible by the time it is ready for distribution so I'm not sitting on a lot of product that is lacking a high converting funnel.
#ads or copy #product
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  • Profile picture of the author David McGimpsey
    It's a physical product I guess?

    How about offering a discount pre-order price?
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    • Profile picture of the author LegitUsername
      Yep, physical product.

      Going the pre-order discount route has been my only option so far, but showing the CTA as "Pre-order" and a discount related to that could skew the conversion measurements.

      At the very least I suppose I can leave the part about it being a pre-order off the main sales page and just put that on the checkout form so I have isolated metrics on how well that page is performing on it's own.
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  • Profile picture of the author Matthew Stanley
    so I have isolated metrics on how well that page is performing on it's own.
    Yeah. As long as your copy / vsl etc variations all control for pre-order in the same manner, you'll still be able to run useful tests on efficacy and conversion that you can apply once you're shipping
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  • Profile picture of the author Johnny12345
    Originally Posted by LegitUsername View Post

    I have a big gap of 2 months before production is complete and would like to use that time to optimize the marketing as much as possible by the time it is ready for distribution so I'm not sitting on a lot of product that is lacking a high converting funnel.

    It's difficult to say without knowing what the product (or even the niche) is, but rather than worry about split-testing at this point, I think you should focus on 4 things:

    1) Who is your target customer?

    This is the biggest question. Knowing this will guide ALL your marketing preparation. What do they want? Is there a void in the marketplace? Does your product fill that void or fill a need, want, or desire?

    2) How can you reach your best prospects (what traffic method)?

    You'll need to do your break-even math to estimate profitability scenarios with the various traffic methods.

    3) Prepare your marketing materials -- taking care to "match your message to your market."

    This is CRITICAL. Because your prospects only know what you tell them. You must anticipate their concerns and provide enough information for them to make a buying decision.

    And, hopefully, your product has a competitive advantage of some sort. Your copy must explain WHY yours is the best choice. Your copy must sell the sizzle (benefit), not the steak (the product itself). Proof elements and your offer will also be very important.

    4) Prepare to split-test (when the product IS ready).

    Your split-testing will vary depending on your initial results. If your results are poor, then your test should use very different types of copy. If you initial results are good, then you're really just trying to refine and hone what you've got.

    This is why I don't think split-testing should be your main concern, at this point.

    John
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  • Profile picture of the author Medon
    A subsidy for pre-orders will do.
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