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A/B Testing: Finding your perfect narrative


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Matt Hurst
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Time is money and never has this been more pertinent than in the digital world where attention spans are short and competition is fierce. The opening seconds of your video content are crucial.

A/B testing, so often overlooked by many media buyers, can provide invaluable insight when refining your hooks and calls to actions.

By testing different hooks and elements with your audience, you can discover what truly captures their engagement and encourages them to convert.


Basics of A/B testing

A/B testing, at its core, involves comparing two versions of a variable to see which one performs best.

In the context of hooks, you could take the main 20 seconds of a video and apply two different hooks within the opening three seconds and test the two against each other to determine which hook has the greatest impact on performance.

In doing so, you’re able to determine which hooks resonate best, providing an opportunity to scale and replicate.


Setting up A/B tests

When it comes to A/B tests, it doesn’t, and shouldn’t, have to be complicated…

  1. Identify your goal: What action do you want your audience to take after viewing your content? This should range from clicking the ad to a low funnel action such as making a purchase.
  2. Create two variants: Develop two different hooks for your content. Ensure they’re distinct enough to test against each other – it could be an emotional hook vs. a statistical hook.
  3. Set up your campaign: When setting up the test, select the key metric which aligns closest with your goal, often for ecomm this would be cost per purchase.
  4. Analyse the data: Once live, your campaigns will begin to collect data – analyse the relevant metrics based on your goals to determine which hook performed the best.


Crucially, you should only have one variable. If you’re trying to determine which hook performs best, that means your target audience, body copy, headlines, etc., must remain the same. This prevents any variables from being contaminated with false data and you can be assured the differentiator was the hook.


Learning from the data

Once you’ve generated the data, take those learnings, and implement them when briefing future content.

Was it a question-based hook which led to a stronger conversion rate, or was it an emotional hook?

These learnings can refine your content strategy and allow you to develop hooks that consistently resonate with your audience.



A/B testing your hooks isn’t just about finding what works; it’s about understanding your audience on a deeper level. By continuously experimenting and adapting your content, you can ensure your brand not only captures attention but maintains it.

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