I'd say it's like spying. But it's even more clever. Not devious…just clever.
Continuously testing your results, particularly from an ad response, isn't just spying on what your customer is going to do, it's actually getting inside their head and tapping into what their particular criteria is. What their specific "safe combination" is.
Once you know that? Once you know that magic phrase that triggers them to stop clicking around, and start reaching into their wallet? Well then it's on. It's time to make some real money.
So testing isn't about proving or disproving your favorite ad copy, or creative, or subheads, or whatever. It's about shutting up and listening to your market. I teach this to my small business owners and I feel a little like a marriage counselor. Its like I'm saying, "Do you want to be right, or do you want to be happily married?"
Do you want to be right, or do you want to be happily profitable?
So, listen. Listen to your market. Test like crazy and when you get the answers, listen to them and change course. Put all your education and ego aside and just go ask your customer, because you don't know what's in their head until you ask them.
When you put the test out and the algorithm comes back and says "this is the most important thing on the page" ….you have to listen what that image is saying to that person.
Are they concerned about news, or are they looking for how-to, step by step instruction? Or are they just gathering, gathering, gathering more information?
This is why I love Taguchi. It, for lack of a better word, zooms in on what is most important to your customer and pounces on it. It's not about testing for the sake of testing. Testing so that you, as a smart marketer, can feel good that you're "running tests."
It's not about your assumptions, your ego, and your preferences. It's about your customers and their preferences and their triggers.
It's not about you. It's about them. Never forget that…and you'll make a lot of money.