Why Mobile Research?

Why not? A response some of you might want to say, and surely many will agree that mobile research is the next big thing in marketing research.



Mobile phones have become the extended part of our lives. It is not considered a luxury to own a mobile phone but a necessity. Almost 100% of young people, businessmen, housewives, and even the jobless have mobile phones. To each one, their mobile phone has a level of importance that goes beyond just messaging and calling. It is their planner, their phonebook, reminder, alarm clock, mp3 player, gaming device, etc. It is not surprising to see people with no other tech at hand except a mobile phone.


Companies nowadays provide mobile phones to their employees for work purposes. Not hard phones – mobile phones. Most businesses are now conducted via mobile phones because of its handiness and convenience making it the primary means of which to communicate with others at any time and any place.


Mobile phone connectivity is not limited to one area. It is global. With the use of mobile phone applications like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, What’s App, Tango and Skype make talking to someone on the other side of the globe feel like they’re not far at all.


Everyone knows how to use a mobile phone. Not knowing how to use a mobile phone would sound like you’re from another planet – even senior citizens know how to use a mobile phone now. Because of mobile technology, everyone knows how to make a call, download an application, take a photo or video, record audio, search through the net, and do many other things online making respondents able and knowledgeable in using those tools for research or collecting information.


Information is accurate. For researchers, they can be sure that the information they receive are real time, up to date and fresh. No more made up or inaccurate information. Everything is fast, convenient and accurate making mobile research the most chosen form of conducting research today and in the near future it will only double or triple in number or percentage.


Nobody is unreachable. Respondents that are difficult to reach are definitely reachable through mobile research. The pool of potential respondents has become enormous. Nobody will be too busy to participate in a research. Even respondents who live in more remote or difficult to find locations can now be accessible.


In that sense, many marketing research companies are creating and improving their mobile research tools to get ahead in the market research industry.


Mobile Takes You to a More Intimate Level with Your Respondents

The aim of qualitative marketing research has always been to dig deeper. It endeavors to find the answers to why, when, how, who or other questions that can not be answered by just a number or percentage.

Mobile Takes You to a More Intimate Level with Your Respondents
Since each research may vary from simple products or services to more advanced or complex ones the responses roused are naturally, also diverse. Aside from the pursuit of gaining information about certain queries, the validity of the information collected is just as important as to how it will affect the result of the entire study.
Often times, a respondent would give an answer they think is expected by the interviewer – especially if they feel quite uncomfortable about the actual answer in their mind. After all, they are still talking to a stranger.

This is common when the focus of the study is quite sensitive or if the personality of the respondent is really withdrawn. Of course, as time passes and the respondent gets more comfy with the researcher their feedback about certain topics become more open or direct as to when they first start.
Mobile marketing research has expanded into the privacy of the respondents. However, it does not make them uncomfortable because they have the tool in their hands which they can use anyhow and anytime in their convenience. This gives them a sense of independence although they have tasks needed to be fulfilled. This also makes them open up more since not everything they send back to the researchers has to be done in person but through mobile connections.

There are times when the research requires the respondents to take a video of themselves using a certain product or acquiring a specific service. Instead of having someone follow them around with a camera or voice recorder, they could just take the video or recording themselves and submit it to their facilitator through their chosen mode of communication. Not only does it remove the goose bumps of someone literally breathing down your neck but also the tendency for answers to be faked for the sake of ‘getting it over with’.

For shopper insights and mystery shopping, mobile research makes them feel like a real critique or expert. This gives them a sense of pride and importance which brings out more natural comments. Of course they are aware of why and what they are doing but the more freedom they have in accomplishing those chores, the better and the more interesting the results are.

Utilizing Today’s Technology for Event Planning

Events are an invaluable tool for marketing. It is undeniable how an event can make or break a brand thus it is very important to learn from the past events and prepare for new ones. Technology has played an important rule in the way events are conducted and more importantly how we document the event user experiences.

Imagine how it was back in the days where people were perfectly alright with filling out a paper from and faxing it in and if that didn’t work most often than not people wouldn’t be so upset and think badly about an event, but then again people had a much lower expectation then. Now with the increase in technological advancements, allowing people to communicate and share data seamlessly through devices that fit so neatly in one’s pocket, there isn’t really much of an excuse not to be able to send at least a message or two.

It wasn’t until a few years ago that organizations started utilizing this and started coining the term “social media”. These days people are strongly incorporating the use of Facebook, Twitter and so on to obtain client feedback in real time. With the developing technology today one can utilize these social media tools, in the lines of marketing and communication strategies, with limitless possibilities and that includes event marketing.

In a promotional standpoint, social media platforms can prove to be quite beneficial. Let’s say you wanted to promote an upcoming event to a wide range of people, one simply had to use a with array of social media sites to post about your event and its details such as time, venue and more allowing millions of potential viewers to get instantly informed. Event registration can be done easily by including an online ticketing page link.

Another good example is the use of Twitter. Twitter has been adopted by several organizations, both big and small to “tweet” and disseminate (140characters or less) updates, events and other activities on a daily basis. Twitter users can follow “tweets” from people, business, organizations, etc on Twitter with just a simple click. This ease of use makes it the most favored medium to spread the word to the public and get responses in return.

The popularity of social media has become more solidified with the current developments in mobile technology. Smartphones and mobile tablet devices now account for the major spike in the growth of social media.  One can now request for user feedback via social media to these mobile devices to you target audience in a timely manner. The contacts can respond immediately with their feedback and suggestions using their mobile devices.

The highly interactive nature of how mobile technology and social media is now that gets them fully engaged. Added to that is the beauty of the way technology has simplified a once mundane task that attracts people the most. If utilized well, one can organize events and improve on them from conceptualization to event user experience feedback all in the comfort of one’s seat.  Considering all this, one would be foolish not to consider the limitless possibilities that these two power house tools can be in the events organization field both now and in the future. As time changes the way we interact so does how events should be ever changing to capture that interest.

Civicom Marketing Research Services Speaks at Merlien’s MRMW Event in Cincinnati

Insitu at Marketing Research in the Mobile World

Greenwich, CT USA, July 10, 2011. Marketing Research Services Global Leader Civicom will speak at Merlien’s Market Research in the Mobile World in Cincinnati July 18th – 19th to show support to the marketing research industry in embracing the emergence of more sophisticated and advanced mobile marketing research technology.

Picture this – a consumer enters a supermarket and goes to the aisle where your product is located.  The person takes your product and puts it on the push cart then proceeds to buying other goods.  Five minutes later, the consumer is back in the same aisle and returns your product in the shelf.  Worse, the consumer chooses a higher priced competitive product for no apparent reason.  You might think that this person is crazy but that is another story.  But without a crystal ball, don’t you wish you could know what transpired during those crucial five minutes where you lost the sale?  Now you can find out this information with Civicom InSitu® Mobile Research.

Civicom InSitu® Mobile Researchgives marketing researchers the ability to get actionable insights into real world consumer behavior through respondents using mobile devices, smart phones, and even traditional land lines. Civicom also offers an iPad and iPhone App for mobile research.

Civicom believes in creating practical innovative technology solutions to make it possible for marketing researchers to reach a broader respondent base, as well as the opportunity to reach every person with a phone. The resulting insights are greatly valued as an integral part of the bigger picture of marketing research: reaching the right target market and sending the right message.

Mobile qualitative research brings about results from truly richer data derived from unadulterated insights in the moment.  As pioneers in providing practical mobile research solutions to the marketing research community, and advocates of this innovative methodology, Civicom supports MRMW in promoting breakthrough applications for mobile phones, as well as in building a community of shared mobile insights among researchers, developers, and service providers.

Civicom also plays an active role as one of the founding members of the MMRA Global (Mobile Marketing Research Association).   Civicom will attend the second MMRA General Assembly the day following the MRMW Conference, at the same location in Cincinnati.

Rebecca West, Civicom’s Global VP of Marketing Research Services, is presenting a compelling mobile research case study entitled: Lather, Rinse, Repeat: Getting Into the Shower and Other Private Places with Mobile Qualitative.  In her presentation, Rebecca will discuss how mobile qualitative takes researchers to places that have been unimaginable in the past.  Mobile qualitative lets research get closer to the moment in situations or scenarios deemed very intimate or private by the consumer.  With mobile qualitative, taboo topics can be openly discussed in an intimate monologue where a respondent can stay anonymous and attuned to his or her own thoughts.

More importantly, Rebecca will show how mobile qualitative research such as Civicom InSitu® Mobile Research can allow you to be there where consumers formulate important thoughts and perceptions that are truly rich insights in the moment. 

Mobile Qualitative Research Gets Data in the Moment

Civicom Insitu Mobile ResearchIt has proven time and time again that mobile research has opened up areas which weren’t possible before the mobile evolution. Mobile phone technology has evolved so much in the past years that it is now common to see people using video-enabled mobile devices. With this new technology, mobile researchers can now have direct access to the lives of consumers more than ever before, whenever and wherever they are—whether they are traveling, working in the office, dining at a restaurant, or shopping at the mall. Research participants can use their mobile phones to send in their responses or provide feedback during the event or consumer experience, enabling the researchers to acquire in-depth and relevant data which is also time-sensitive, which was not possible before the era of mobile qualitative research.

This is what is important to businesses nowadays—getting closer to their consumers , and getting to know them better to make more accurate business decisions and introduce new innovations to the consumer experience.

Mobile qualitative research is also a cost-effective research tool for today’s marketers. Researchers are able to expand their range, and the locations of the participants are no object. That is, participants may be from a local area, may be selected nationally, or even internationally, and as long as participants own a mobile phone, it will not be necessary for clients to travel and devote more time to the research activity than needed. Another advantage is, feedback and data collected via mobile qualitative research is transmitted faster, either through the mobile devices or online, and since the logistics of the research activity requires mobile phones, the research is much easier to set up than the traditional offline, non-mobile qualitative research. Furthermore, the researchers are able to immerse themselves into the lives of consumers and follow the participants effectively, 24/7, at virtually no cost.

The interactivity feature of mobile qualitative research also gives the researchers an opportunity to send instructions to participants or interview participants during the actual consumer activity. Mobile qualitative research makes it convenient for participants to respond and send their feedback at the exact moment of the consumer experience.

It is also possible through mobile qualitative research, to conduct followup research. Participants may be given homework assignments after focus group discussions or in-depth interviews. Through this, the participants may share additional insights about their consumer behavior, yielding more comprehensive data for the researchers to analyze.

The Evolution of Mobile Research: Smartphones

Mobile Research EvolutionResearch shows that smartphone ownership has been on a steady rise, and figures have been staggering. More than half of US mobile phone users own a smartphone, which accounts for 9.14 million smartphones. All over the world, there are five billion mobile phone users, and from this total, there are over one billion smartphone users.

This data is significant not only for mobile phone users, but for marketing researchers as well. Smartphones are important mobile research devices – it makes it possible to conduct research anytime, anywhere– and this is where the opportunities lie for mobile research.

The camera function of mobile phones make it possible for researchers to see and experience what the participants are experiencing at any given time. For example, the participants may upload information, including photos or videos directly from their smartphone without having to transfer them to a computer first.

Because smartphones are handy and smaller compared to handheld video recorders or cameras, smartphones make it easier for participants to capture and share photos, video clips and even voice recordings. They may even interact with mobile researchers and other participants in an online group forum, which is, so to speak, an online version of a focus group discussion.

This characteristic of smartphones and other mobile devices gives mobile research more possibilities when it comes to data-gathering because it does not force participants to remain in a single location, tethered to a research study area. Aside from the above-mentioned advantages of smartphones, mobile research makes it possible to know the exact location of participants. That is, users may now “check-in” to locations using their smartphones, when part of the research is to keep a travel diary.

Furthermore, the ease of use of mobile phones ensures that the participants will send in their reports and observations and increases the follow through. Add to that is the voice-to-text functionality of smartphones, which enables participants to dictate their responses while on the go, increasing the accuracy of the report in terms of the time it is sent during the course of an assigned research activity. The additional photos, videos and other forms of data submitted clearly describe the behavior under study much more than words can. This mixture of different types of data enhances mobile research in a way that it yields findings which are much more extensive and thorough than other forms of qualitative research. Smartphones has indeed taken mobile research into the next level getting richer and more vivid data, in the moment.