The Academy
Lesson 4
Lesson 4
Plan your experiments

The matrix to plan your next experiments


How do you prioritize which experiment to run? The Effort vs Impact matrix. Learn how to host a personalization brainstorming session with your team to choose the best idea for your next experiment. Then, follow the personalization blueprint to plan your campaign.


Hey, I'm Austin Distel. Welcome back. And in this lesson I'm going to explain the matrix used to plan and organize your personalization experiments. Are you ready? Let's plug in.

I'm sure by now your mind is racing with all kinds of possibilities to personalize your site. Should you do all of them? Well, maybe. To find the answer you'll have to enter the matrix.

[Scene from The Matrix]

No, this is to figure out which experiments to run, and it's called The Effort vs Impact Matrix. Bring together your team for a white boarding session and explain to everybody the goal you're trying to achieve, such as increased new trials, and then set a timer for 10 minutes to brain dump ideas onto a bunch of post it notes.

Now it's time to place all of those ideas on the matrix ranging from effort to impact, and know that there will be some readjusting of the positions as more ideas get added because the amount of effort and impact is in relationship with each other. You'll come to find each of these four quadrants has a theme.

In the top left are quick wins, the top right are big bets, the bottom left are your chores, and the bottom right is the valley of death.

Ideally, you want to choose ideas with the higher impact depending on your team's resources, like money, team members, technical ability, and that will determine if you decide to go for your quick wins or your big bets.

Choose one experiment for now and then save all those other ideas in the backlog, and then rank them in order of priority so that now you have an experiment roadmap.

Planning your campaign begins by setting up what is your businesses goal, what metric are you trying to impact your leads, your demos, your trials, your purchases.

Next we want to think about where will they see this experience? For example, which pages are they on? The homepage, the product page, pricing page, blog homepage.

When I'm thinking about which pages to personalize, I look for ones that are both high intent and high traffic. There's no use in personalizing a page that nobody will see.

Get specific on your audience. What lifecycle stage are they? Are they a first time visitor? Are they a lead? Are they a customer? And what industry are they in? Maybe it's SaaS, e-commerce or agency.

Then also think about where do they come from – an ad, a referral partner and event? You don't need to use all of these, but I recommend finding a theme and sticking with it.

I look for audiences that are large enough to make an impact, meaning that more than just a couple of people will see this.

However, I will break that because sometimes I do want to focus on my high value customers even if there's only a few of them.

So now's the fun part where you get to plan what you're going to change on your website. Where you edit the headline, personalize a product mockup, hide a button, maybe add an announcement bar.

You can count on experiments above the fold to get seen, but as you scroll down the page, more and more people will drop off, so higher up the page is likely to have a higher impact.

You can use a tool like Hotjar to see heat maps of how far people are scrolling down your pages.

Once you have several personalization campaigns live, they will stack up when the visitor matches multiple audiences.

For example, my industry campaign personalizes the headline and the customer logos, while my campaign for lifecycle stage changes the call to action button from demo to start trial.

So that concludes this lesson on planning and organizing your personalization experiment. I hope that this lesson gave you clarity on how to choose the right experiment and then go out and plan your campaign.

In the next lesson, I'm going to open up the experience app and walk through click-by-click how to build a campaign from scratch. See you there.


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