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If You Don’t Know, Test


Do you know which email subject lines work best?  How about what will make the home page of your website more likely to get your target audiences to engage?

In the latest in our Zero to Ninety series, Chip Giller (@cgiller) founder of the environmental news and commentary website, Grist, says the only way to answer those questions is to test.

The reason: “People don’t always do what we think they’re going to do.” That’s why, he adds, “testing is crucial in every business, including communications.”

Giller explains that testing has become a priority at Grist and extends to comparing how different email subject lines and templates as well as home page designs fare against each other. Taking what they’ve learned from testing has led to boosts in email engagement, donations and monthly audiences. Testing, adds Giller, helps you get to know your audience better “and gets you real results on the way to making the world a better place.”

Watch the video and learn how testing can help you figure out what you don’t already know.

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Chip recommends:
Om Malik — @om
Alexis Madrigal — @alexismadrigal
Bill McKibben — @billmckibben
Beth Kanter — @kanter

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Further reading:
Your New Grist Front Page: Tried and Tested
Nieman Journalism Lab
KISS Metrics Blog

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