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May 13, 2011


Phil Johnson

Comedians spend a life time testing material. But you'd be surprised how many forget to do the same with their marketing and business stuff.

For me, a joke gets 3 tries before going back to the drawing board or being dumped. And now the parts of my songs do the same.

One other tip is not testing too many variables at once. If you change too many things, you don't know what caused the effect. In the comedy world, we make sure to sandwich new material in between proven material.

This is all more concrete if you're testing business stuff. Did it result in more sales/bookings/emails/etc? But with the musical stuff it can be a little trickier. Comics have a defined goal, the laugh. But besides the laugh, we're super tuned into the audience to try and gauge what they're feeling during the laugh. I have to tap into that idea with music audiences but without the laugh as a guide. Bottom line is always watch the eyes of the crowd to see how into whatever it is you're doing at the moment.

David Hooper

Thanks for adding this. Agree with you about not testing too many variables at once.

Comedy is great, because the feedback is instant. Something either works or it doesn't, with little gray area. Music isn't as easy to judge in that aspect, although I think you're right in that, in the end, the sales are a great measurement of success, since people vote with their wallets. The only issue with that is that you have other variables, such as day of week, day of month, pay cycles (1st week of month shows almost always sell more merch), etc.

But still...testing works, so do it!! :)

Will look into some quick and easy tests people can do to get feedback to make a better product. At one time, I though about doing a site for musicians, similar to hotornot.com, where they could post photos of themselves, album covers, or other items to get ratings. Doing a "survey" of your list in a similar fashion would be a good way to get this kind of info.

David Hooper

Forgot to add... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Multivariate_testing has some great info on multivariant testing.

empresas de consultoria

Nice post David, i totally agree with you. In my opinion one of the best ways to acquire an interesting market share is to give clients an oportunity to test your product and become an evangelist of your brand, your product or your service.

Music Marketing Chris

A little test I like to run is for album titles...

Before the release I will send fans a choice of four free tracks and usually one of them will get downloaded much more than the others.

I call the album the title of the most popular track and Then I know it will appeal to the fans.

This is a really quality post David!

- chris

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