According to a January 2017 Pew Research report, the vast majority of Americans – 95% – now own a cellphone of some kind; the share of Americans that own smartphones rose to 77%, up from just 35% in Pew Research Center’s first survey of smartphone ownership conducted just six years ago. And recently, MediaPost cited Cisco's Visual Networking Index (VNI) Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast (2016 to 2021) which reported, “that by 2021, more members of the global population will use mobile phones -- 5.5 billion -- than have bank accounts at 5.4 billion, running water at 5.3 billion or landlines at 2.9 billion.” There’s no doubting that mobile is now mainstream, but online surveys still outrank mobile surveys in digital data collection methods according to the latest GRIT Report.
It’s been said for years that now is the time for mobile research, but we never seem to make the progress we want or need to make. But, now is really the time for mobile in market research. Why? Because we need to communicate with consumers/panelists in the way that they communicate, and the best way to accomplish this is by going mobile.
One thing mobile has taught us beyond a doubt: consumers are in control. The information they need to make decisions is now at their fingertips. They are more loyal to their own needs than to any particular brand. And consumers want to move onto the ‘next thing’ seconds after engaging. Never has it been more difficult for marketers to target consumers. Mobile created and enables this behavior, but only one in five surveys is 100% mobile compatible today. To truly ‘meet them in the moment’ their survey “experience has to be fast and frictionless.”
Marketing research is an evolving industry; with opportunities for those that can quickly adjust to the changes and discover creative means to do more with less. Clients expect deeper, enriched results at an accelerated pace. I see three trends in our industry in 2016:
- Think like a start-up, act like a researcher: Automation is the newest ‘game changer’ in our industry and will continue to be. But while automation will be a catalyst for change, new models will need to be created to meet client demand. Faster, better, cheaper hasn’t gone away – as a matter of fact, it’s been amplified by a business climate that demands more – much more – without the sacrifice of quality. Companies that can think, act, and execute like a start-up will prosper.
Topics: Marketing Research
Last week, Uber announced that it expanded its service to better accommodate people with disabilities with the introduction of uberASSIST. As part of the service, “driver-partners are specifically trained by Open Doors Organization to assist riders into vehicles and can accommodate folding wheelchairs, walkers, and scooters.”
Topics: disABILITYincites Partnership
Rarely do U.S. government rulings impact the market research industry, but one recent change defines the future of our industry. Since 2014, several industry associations appealed to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to allow marketing researchers the freedom to use auto-dialers to call mobile phones; however, the FCC recently implemented new regulations to expand the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) which prevents the use of robocallers on mobile phones even in the use of market research. By eliminating this outdated and increasingly costly method of data collection, the government got it right.
In our complex world, the accelerated pace of innovation and technology has created a struggle in the marketing research industry. Consumers are our greatest assets, but they are overloaded: countless digital marketing campaigns, social media platforms and infinite numbers of apps are fighting for their attention. Our attempts to quantify their behavior and attitudes are heavily influenced by technology. But with the frequency of change so rapid, how do we judge if we are capturing the ‘norm’? Are we capturing their full attention?
With 2014 industry events behind us, we reflect on how each conference and event reshapes and energizes the marketing research industry. Our competitors are tough; the industry is shifting, and our client demands change day to day. Lightspeed GMI established a new identity -- to make research easy and in doing so, we will streamline the company's diversified portfolio across the consumer, B2B, financial and healthcare business segments. No matter the brand, no matter the conference, one thing remains the same – the universal focus on clients.
Last week, Forbes reported that Halloween spending in the US is expected to be around $11.3 billion this year. With that kind of skin in the zombie game, we decided to turn to the Lightspeed GMI Mobile Panel for a pulse check on what tricks (and treats) consumers have up their sleeves for Halloween 2014.