Testing Corner: How Different Images Can Impact Your Results

Testing Corner: How Different Images Can Impact Your Results

When I create a magalog (a sales piece that looks like a magazine), I test two different covers to see which one receives the higher response.

It’s counterintuitive, but often the cover with the less professional-looking photo gets a higher response.

Prospects are more likely to respond to a photo that looks real – like it was taken by a non-professional, of a normal person.

I created a magalog for Capital Holding Corporation, which focused on showing senior citizens the benefits of reverse mortgages and giving advice on other financial concerns.

When developing this piece, my mission was to create a cover that the target audience (senior citizens) could relate to.


testing corner images


testing corner images


Test: Take a look at the two covers above. As you can see, Cover A features an elderly woman standing outside her home holding a rake. The copy on the cover was split between both sides of the cover and an additional image (a stack of money) was used to illustrate a headline that read, “Special Focus: A mortgage that pays YOU.”

Cover B shows an elderly couple sitting on a swing chair with a cat sitting on the woman’s lap. The copy on this cover was lined up in a box to the left and on the bottom in all caps read – THE GREAT LIFE.

One important thing to note: The woman on Cover A was a real customer of Capital Holding. Underneath her picture in small print down to the right, the copy read: “One Woman’s Story: Nikki Grant, Capital Holding customer, Long Beach, California.” (Cover B was a professional photograph using models).

Which cover do you think received the higher response?

Result: If you guessed Cover A you are right! Cover A received an 84% higher response than Cover B.

Most marketers guessed cover B because the picture is much better and far more “relational.”

But Cover A most likely got the higher response because it’s a photo of a real person.

If you would like to discuss your next marketing campaign and what kind of direct response art to use to get a high response, call me at (310)212-5727 or email Caleb at caleb@cdmginc.com.


Here are the rest of this week’s articles:

Marketing Breakthrough: 5 Reasons Why Raising Capital for Your Business Has Never Been Easier
Website Suicide: “Don’t Make Me Think”
Direct Response Copy Tip of the Week: Strengthen Your Copy Using Power Words


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