I was recently invited to speak at the Southern California Market Research Association Education Day at the USC campus, where I presented on the use of mobile devices to conduct market research. To give you a definition of what I mean by mobile market research, one researcher defines it as An approach that’s optimized to engage consumers in real-time at the point of their experience to give feedback on that experience via a mobile device. And a mobile device would primarily be a mobile phone or tablet. (Leonard Murphy, CEO of BrandScan 360).
I’ve been interested in mobile technology and its application to marketing and market research for a while now. The recent SoCal MRA presentation was based on a paper published in May, 2011 by Greenbook called Mobilizing Market Research: The state of the art, future evolutions and implications of mobile data collection method. This past summer I also had the opportunity to speak as a panelist at the Market Research in the Mobile World conference and am currently working on a series of mobile market research app reviews, which will be published on the Greenbook blog.
I greatly enjoyed the presentation at USC, mainly because of the exciting 15 minutes of Q&A it sparked afterwards. Here were some of my favorite questions, many of which I am still working to answer:
1. Q: When will the pricing for mobile market research become standardized?
A: I have no idea! But seriously though, if market research firms actually deliver on the predictions made in the GRIT 2012 report and there is an explosion of mobile MR in 2012, then the technology and sampling providers will have to come up with a standard price for their services. At the moment, there is confusion (and a certain level of disgruntled murmurings) over the fact that many mobile MR tech/sampling providers are keeping their prices on par with online. This seems counterintuitive because most of the mobile surveys out there are about 1/5 of the length of a traditional online survey…We shall see what develops. But I would give it 6 months to a year.
2. Q: Who are the best people to target with this method?
A: People who frequently use mobile technology (and depending on the study, this specifically refers to smartphones) – African-Americans, Hispanics, young adults, ‘Soccer Moms’ etc.
3. Q: Instead of putting URL’s on a receipt, couldn’t stores put something there that would allow the consumer to take the survey immediately from their mobile phones?
A: Yes! This is one of the best uses I can think of for mobile. A QR code to a C-Sat survey that is on your store receipt, or better yet, on a billboard upon entering the store. Then you can get people’s reactions while shopping, or capture the opinions of non-purchasers as well as purchasers.
In case you missed the event, you should catch it next year! Other topics that were presented at the Socal MRA Education Day 2012 were: Using social media in marketing research, TV research 101 and Legal Issues in Market Research.