STRATEGY

I Buy Tests

In my career, I’ve bought over $500 million of direct response marketing. For the record, most of the programs I’ve bought have failed. Probably more than 80% have failed. And yet I’ve been successful at marketing. I get results

The foundation to this success is a principle I learned from a marketing client many years ago. He told me, “Marcia, I have an insatiable appetite for marketing programs that work. I will buy all the marketing you can sell me if you can prove you achieve a Marketing Cost Per Acquisition (MCPA) of ‘x’. And I have unlimited budget for marketing programs that work.”

His philosophy was fuel for my marketing strategy. All I had to do was test a marketing program, show the data for how it performed and then I could buy more of the program. Released from the shackles of a marketing budget, I could look for programs to test and scale. I stopped buying marketing and I started buying tests.

I organized my testing priorities using a few simple rules.

  1. Can the test be measured?
  2. Can I test small?
  3. Is the test scalable and repeatable?
  4. What evidence do I have from past experiences this test will work?
  5. Test lists over testing offers. Test offers over testing creative.

Not all tests will work. In fact, most will fail. You don’t grow a business by buying marketing. You grow a business by testing, measuring, learning and scaling successful tests. I buy tests.

AUTHOR

Marcia Barnes
Marcia Barnes
CEO + Founder

Marcia has a rich history in leading and serving performance-based marketing organizations with nationwide impact. In addition to leading multiple marketing agencies, she has received notable recognition for her leadership as President and CEO at Indianapolis-based Defender Direct (now called DEFENDERS). Over the course of her 14-year tenure with the company, Defender Direct experienced exponential growth from $2MM in annual revenue to more than $400MM.