Having YouTube on your client list is many web strategy studio's dream. For Vancouver's VKI Studios, it's a reality.
But after crafting more than 1,000 variations of YouTube interface, with subtly altered phrases and button placement, YouTube has already moved on.
It was a lot of time and effort that VKI invested into YouTube, and even though it's changed since then, that's not necessarily a bad thing—VKI understands the importance of constantly reassessing the effectiveness of your website.
"The smallest change can have a huge impact, and marketing budgets are being devoted to this for companies serious about growing online," the studio's CEO, John Hossack, says. With his studio's example of 1,000 variations, "The variations were subtle, but the results varied wildly." The company notes that websites which are stagnant for even just a couple of months may already be losing out on opportunities.
"The work we did ten months ago for YouTube is now ancient," John states, noting that "The amount of constant data that influences what subscribers respond to changes almost daily." He cites some examples: "News headlines, Twitter trending topics, and other buzzwords all play a role in what works at the perfect time."
Tyler Wright, a Vancouverite owns Megawatt PR and works closely with VKI Studios, admits he's more of a tech fanboy than actual techie, but offers this nugget of wisdom: "Testing multiple variations of a website is one of the most under utilized tools for the internet marketer." Tyler says that the most successful clients for VKI and similar studios are those who make testing apart of their online marketing culture, and continue to challenge the status quo.
"Measuring and testing in very simple software is becoming a lot more mainstream, even for smaller websites," John says.
Simple software to start with includes Google's Website Optimizer.