You Can’t A/B Test Your Brand Identity

August 10, 2016

Or you SHOULDN’T at least.

There we sat. Wrapping up some initial planning details for a core brand messaging project we’re working on when our client added one additional point of influence on our work-to-come. It was specifically regarding the very leading language to be used on things like the front page of their website—the core expression of who they are as a firm and what they’re all about.

Client: “I just want to be able to test it.”

Us: “Why?”

Client: “To see if it’s working.”

Which, my friends, brings us to the inspiration for this blog post. When it comes to the very core expression of your brand—the crux of your message—the single thing you want people to know and remember about you and your value, A/B testing should never enter the process.

[bctt tweet=”The very core expression of your brand should never undergo A/B testing. It shouldn’t need it.” username=”squareplanet”]

Think of it this way: If you were getting married next week, would you invite your wedding guests to form focus groups so you could make sure your vows were resonating with the maximum amount of attendees?

Of course not. Why? Because IT DOESN’T MATTER what Aunt Matilda and Great Uncle Bob think. It matters that your vows are authentic and honest—that they’re the truest expression of your love and your relationship with your new spouse. That’s the only audience that matters.

Brand messaging is the same way. No, not because “every purchasing decision is like a customer saying ‘I do.’” No no no no no.

Because when a message is truly authentic—when you as an organization can tell the world what you believe and why you exist—then it doesn’t matter what a sample of the masses say. You can’t be everything to everyone. So don’t even try.

Decide who you are, how you’re going to position yourself within the broader context of your industry and the world around you, and then scream it proudly. Those who believe what you believe—that’s the audience that matters. That’s where the impact will be felt. Those are your people.

Because as an Aurora, IL based pop-culture thought leader and rock and roll enthusiast once said:

[x_blockquote cite=”Wayne Campbell” type=”center”]Led Zeppelin didn’t write tunes that everyone liked. They left that to the Bee Gees.[/x_blockquote]

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Don’t be the Bee Gees. Be Led Zeppelin instead. GAME ON!


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