Once you have a solid outline for who you want to recruit, you need a recruitment message that can get your potential testers’ attention. The third part of our series on Finding Quality Beta Testers looks at promoting your test opportunity to your target audience, identifying the most promising outreach channels, and creating messaging that resonates with potential testers.
Choosing the Right Channels for Promotion
If you’re not sure where to find testers that meet your core requirements, a helpful approach is to think about where your target market spends their time. Which websites are they visiting? What social media platforms do they use, and who do they follow? While not every recruiting source will work for your product and target market, concentrating on a few different recruiting sources will enable you to find the applicants you need.
11 Recruitment Sources for Promoting Your Beta Test
- Create a landing page for your test opportunity and link it through your company’s web domains, including customer testing overview pages, blog posts, user groups, and forums. You’ll probably need to collaborate with your Marketing department.
- Promote your Beta Testing opportunity through a test promotion site. Some, like Betabound, will promote your test to its community for free.
- Contact Marketing about posting the application link to your company’s social media feeds.
- Identify bloggers or influencers with connections to your market or product and personally reach out to discuss your Beta Test opportunity.
- Ask existing testers or current community members to share your recruitment landing page with their friends or family.
- Find forums relevant to your product and target market, and approach the forum moderators about posting your Beta Testing opportunity.
- If you’re seeking B2B testers, add Customer Validation program information to your collateral at your next conference or trade show, send an email blast to trade show leads, or link your customer testing overview page in your slide deck.
- If you have the team and budget to devote to online advertising, you can use it to target a specific device, geographic region, or type of person. But be aware: with the number of illegitimate Beta Testing opportunities on the web today, it’s crucial to invest time into creating skillful ad copy to avoid being flagged or deleted.
- Invite trial downloaders of your software to sign up for your tester community.
- Include a link to your tester community on your company’s Contact Us forms where people can submit product feedback.
- Use subtle in-product invitations (for example, in the Help menu) to encourage your existing customer base to sign up for your beta tester community.
As you’re selecting recruiting sources for your Beta Test, consider which of those sources might also be useful year-round as you look to continuously build your tester community.
Creating a Winning Recruitment Message
With a map of the channels you’ll be using to promote your test opportunity, you can more easily design promotional content specific to each one.
To start, you’ll need to write a core recruitment message – essentially an advertisement for your test. This may take a number of forms depending on the tools and channels you’ve decided to use. For most companies, it will take the form of an email invitation and/or a landing page like the one shown below.
Regardless of how you ultimately broadcast your recruitment message, follow these five guidelines to make sure your core message is clear, compelling, attracts the right audience, and sets clear expectations for interested testers.
- Be succinct. Your core recruitment message should be simple and concise, otherwise, you’ll begin to overwhelm your potential applicants instead of exciting them.
- Stress exclusivity. Reminding candidates of the exclusivity of Beta Testing gets them excited about the opportunity and lays the foundation for the secrecy you’ll expect from them as testers.
- Be discreet. If details about your company, product, or Beta Test are meant to be kept confidential, it’s important to be careful with what you divulge in your message. Rather than discussing the specific product, talk about the product category and keep those details vague. This will serve in both protecting you and intriguing potential applicants.
- Clearly communicate requirements and expectations. While you should remain ambiguous about your company and your product’s details, you’ll still want to make sure that your candidates understand exactly what you’d be expecting from them during your test. This will increase both the number of qualified candidates applying for the opportunity and your test participation rates. Be sure that your message communicates not only your basic demographic and technical requirements, but also how much time and energy a potential tester can expect to invest.
- Mention incentives with care. Mentioning specific rewards in recruitment emails or landing pages may attract the wrong candidates with the wrong motivations. This in turn can negatively impact your project. You may want to avoid mentioning incentives all together. If you do choose to disclose this information in your recruitment messaging, be very careful to screen out testers who are only interested in receiving compensation.
Once your core message is in place, you can use it to create content for each channel that you’ll use during your recruitment, from social media posts and paid advertisements to blog posts and full-on email campaigns. Creating all of these promotional materials in advance gives you the opportunity to confirm alignment with recruitment goals. It also enables you to stage the content across channels, making it easier to take everything live when the time comes.
You can get started now by downloading free workable templates, exercises, and step-by-step instructions for creating your recruitment message from the Beta Tester Recruitment Kit in our resource library.