Alpha vs. Beta Testing

Here are last week’s marketing questions:

  1. What is an Alpha and Beta Test?  What is the difference between the two?

Alpha testing is defined as, “In-house testing of a pre-production model or version, to locate or estimate design flaws or deficiencies (, 2018).

Beta testing is defined as, “Second level, external pilot-test of a product (usually a software) before commercial quantity production. At the beta test stage, the product has already passed through the first-level, internal pilot-test (alpha test) and glaring defects have been removed. But (since the product may still have some minor problems that require user participation) it is released to selected customers for testing under normal, everyday conditions of use to spot the remaining flaws (, 2018).”

The Pros of Alpha and Beta testing are the following:

  • Large numbers of testers
  • Live site testing
  • Testing by real users
  • Can continually tweak (Tomlin, C., 2009).

The Cons of Alpha and Beta testing are the following:

  • Must be built
  • Chaotic testing
  • Testers may not be end users
  • Exposes secret sauce (Tomlin, C., 2009).

Both types of testing are equally important in the new product process so that all the kinks are worked out prior to the product or service going public. If a product doesn’t work, then customers will be unhappy and complain very quickly. The end result will cost the company thousands of dollars due to the loss of sales and damage its brand.

  1. How important is Branding ? – and how do you manage it?

A brand is defined as, “Unique design, sign, symbol, words, or a combination of these, employed in creating an image that identifies a product and differentiates it from its competitors (, 2018).” It is important because, “Over time, this image becomes associated with a level of credibility, quality, and satisfaction in the consumer’s mind (see positioning). Thus brands help harried consumers in the crowded and complex marketplace, by standing for certain benefits and value. The legal name for a brand is a trademark and, when it identifies or represents a firm, it is called a brand name. See also corporate identity (, 2018).”

A company’s brand is managed by its scorecard, by asking the following questions and adhering to these guidelines:

  • What is the brand’s role or purpose?
    • If the brand is to aid in positioning, choose a brand name with meaning.
  • Will this product be a bridgehead to a line of products?
    • If so, choose carefully so as not to be a limitation in the future.
  • Do you expect a long-term position in the market?
    • If not, a dramatic, novelty name might be useful.
  • Is the name irritating or insulting to any market segment?

(Crawford, C. M. & Benedetto, C. A. D., 2015, p. 427).

A corporation’s brand, logo, trademark, positioning, and packing need to be easy to be understood by all, communicate the company’s mission and complement its products and services in the marketplace (Crawford, C. M. & Benedetto, C. A. D., 2015, p. 427). Branding is more than beating your competition, it needs to build the company’s credibility and culture to increase customer loyalty, and motivate them to purchase products (Lee, L., 2018). Without a good branding strategy to protect the individual or global company’s brand equity, it will crumble.

References:, (2018). Alpha testing definition. Retrieved on May 1, 2018, from, (2018). Beta testing definition. Retrieved on May 1, 2018, from, (2018). Brand definition. Retrieved on May 1, 2018, from

Crawford, C. M. & Benedetto, C. A. D., (2015). New Products Management. (11th ed.). New York, NY: McGaw-Hill Education

Lee, L. (2018, February 18). Why is branding important when it comes to your market? Retrieved on May 1, 2018, from

Tomlin, C., (2009). Usability, a/b or alpha/beta testing, what’s better? Part II alpha/best testing. Retrieved on May 1, 2018, from





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