Marketers express confidence in creative’s ability to drive results, but they also want ways to prove it, according to Persado’s AI in Creativity survey. Unlike other areas of marketing, such as targeting and segmentation, promotions, and pricing, there’s really not the accountability and data-driven approach for marketing creative as there is in other areas.
“Creative is this last mile to creating better customer experiences,” said Amy Heidersbach, CMO of Persado.
In a webinar conducted as part of the Adobe Summit, 2021, Amy and Erin McFarland, JP Morgan Chase Executive Director of Marketing Channel Strategy & Optimization, discussed how Persado and JP Morgan Chase are partnering to bridge this gap to bring more accountability to creative.
The discussion focused on the ways that the customer knowledge embedded in the minds of creative professionals can merge with the data and insights of AI to produce consistent, high-quality experiences. Far from eliminating the need for creative talent or creating the potential for less relevant content, AI maximizes the impact that creative content can have.
“Sometimes the AI can feel more human than humans trying to relate to each other,” observed Erin.
To illustrate, the speakers highlighted three unexpected findings from experiments Persado has conducted with Chase’s marketing team:
Unexpected Finding #1: CTAs don’t have to be so direct actionable
Marketers often write their calls to action (CTAs) to get clients to initiate a purchase. Chase found, however, that CTAs focused on initiation aren’t right for all products. When the bank tested language for a new investment product, results showed that observational CTAs that prompted visitors to learn more performed better than CTAs that directed clients to take the next step — something they may not have been ready for.
Unexpected Finding #2: Shorter isn’t necessarily better when it comes to subject lines
Size doesn’t matter. At least not when it comes to email subject line performance. A study by Persado of 30,000 subject lines confirmed that there is no correlation between character count and performance analysis.
“Marketers are constantly told to keep it brief,” said Erin about her experiences developing campaigns. The received wisdom about longer subject lines tends to be, “Nobody’s reading that”
With Chase, multiple language experiments found that subject lines of between 76 and 197 characters outperformed shorter subject lines. This insight spurred a change of thinking from creative people who’d accepted these truisms.
Amy observed, “I’ve sat in on so many meetings since I joined Persado, where the client said that, left to their own devices, they would have chosen the wrong thing.”
Unexpected Finding #3: The best language is not the same across channels
In the logic of omnichannel marketing, customers want a consistent experience with a brand across all channels. But consistent is not the same as identical. Nor should marketers ignore differences in customer needs at various stages of the relationship.
Web landing pages provide one example of this issue in action for Chase. Fear-oriented language like, “Don’t miss out” effectively keeps customers from bouncing off product landing pages. However, it is the least effective emotional approach for every other channel.
Erin commented, “We would have never thought there would be different CTAs from step to step, but there are. Even within the same campaign trying to incite the same action with the same offer, depending on where you are in the funnel you might want to change the language.”
Becoming more accountable and data driven in marketing is not only about leveraging AI in creativity. It starts with people showing a willingness to shift their mentality. Talent has to adapt to new ideas and new ways of working. Advanced technology enables these new ways, as it does data and customer segmentation, and presentation of content. Together, those factors come together to allow marketers to scale high-performing creative outputs across channels and products.