In a multi-phase research program, we often deploy a second phase around testing numerous message concepts.  In this process we screen a large number of messaging concepts and options that resulted from the qualitative research and internal discussions through an online screening test we have developed that uses “in the field” online or social media advertising or messages with random assignment of concepts to screen down to a manageable number of concepts.


We have developed this technique to allow some rigorous scientific screening of options before we proceed to the survey testing but to consider a variety of options until a statistically significant amount of data is collected about the merit of any particular concept.

This approach is common in commercial online marketing but has not typically been applied in politics or donor engagement in a way that integrates with the other qualitative and quantitative research as it now can for political and non profit initiatives.

In this phase we would work with your campaign or organization to identify the relatively large set of messaging concepts to be screened and then develop an experimental design, including control groups, for online ad or message screening. We would then coordinate with the campaign’s digital team to produce online advertising for each concept and place those ads targeted according to the experimental design.

The screening test relies upon clicks and follow up engagement as the measurements of effectiveness. Based on the experimental design, the outcome is that we identify which message concepts result in significantly different behavior than the control and which do not, allowing us to cut down the messages to a screened group of potentially effective messages for further testing.