Message Testing in Market Research to Understand the Changing Marketing Environment

Time Of Info By TOI Desk Report   May 18, 2023   Update on : May 19, 2023

Message Testing in Market Research

Over the past ten years, the marketing landscape has undergone significant change, and in almost every industry, top brands have shifted to omnichannel, digital-first marketing campaigns. Websites, searches, digital display ads, social media ads, mobile applications, text messaging, email, etc. are all examples of digital marketing channels. Digital marketing technologies are transforming even traditional media channels like TV, radio, print, outdoor, etc. because they are now internet-based. Campaign testing and optimisation have increasingly moved from market research to in-market A/B testing as marketing campaigns become more digital. A/B testing is more feasible in theory, but in practice, it doesn’t help many firms launch the best messaging campaigns because a majority of A/B tests fail due to insufficient data separation and are given up on by the marketing teams. Marketers are turning to message testing in market research to optimize their messaging campaigns before they are released to the public, realising that the promise of A/B testing is difficult to realise for brands that are not frequently frequented in digital channels.

Market research message testing for competitive advantage

Prior to launching marketing campaigns, message testing enables businesses to determine the best content, offers, and brand messaging. Message testing is frequently used to find the messages that appeal to customers the most, rank messages from best to worst, learn why a message has high, medium, or low appeal, come up with improvements for messages, find the best message bundles, etc. You can test messages with your current customers utilising a message testing survey before beginning marketing campaigns to get an idea of how well they will perform. Campaign message testing aids brand teams in campaign optimisation and continual campaign enhancement while the campaign is running. Because message testing has the power to make or break marketing campaigns, businesses invest tens of thousands of dollars in it. Message testing in market research can be a useful technique if you want to develop strong, captivating marketing campaigns for your company’s goods or services.

Current message testing techniques’ limitations

But how exactly do you test messages? To test communications before they are released, market researchers and marketers can choose from a range of message testing approaches. Focus groups, diads/triads, or even one-on-one interviews with clients are all common components of qualitative message testing surveys. These conversations, which can take place in person, on the phone, or in internet chat rooms, are typically facilitated by an interviewer or moderator. Customers are requested to assess messages and rank/rate them based on preference in online surveys used for quantitative message testing. Choice-based approaches are used in more sophisticated quantitative message testing studies, in which respondents are presented with a range of messaging options and asked to share their preferences. Each message testing methodology has advantages and disadvantages. An effective way to delve deeply into specific messages and comprehend the psychology behind each one is using qualitative message testing surveys. A qualitative message testing survey has severe restrictions on the number of messages that can be evaluated and the amount of time that can be spent doing so.

Compared to qualitative message testing surveys, quantitative message testing in market research can test many more messages, but it does not allow for in-depth analysis of each message or identify specific drivers or obstacles of appeal for each message. Software for quantitative message testing is also not well adapted to eliciting suggestions for message improvement from respondents.

The future of market research message testing

New science, technology, and algorithms are anticipated to revolutionise message testingin the future, enabling marketing teams to become more sophisticated in optimising their messaging campaigns prior to going to market:

Communication Science

The field of message and communications has traditionally been regarded as an art form and been ruled by a creative process. As brand marketers demand more predictable success and higher ROI from their messaging campaigns, messaging today is becoming more scientific in nature.

Messaging Protocols

Numerous Large Language Models (LLMs) trained on many parameters are now accessible to all marketers thanks to significant advancements made in the understanding of language by machine learning algorithms and artificial intelligence (AI). To uncover successful messaging campaigns that people will engage with, the team at Newristics make sure that messages are typically tested with actual customers and genuine experiences using qualitative and quantitative primary market research approach.

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