Instant access and real-time responses
Mobile phones allow us as consumers to be connected at all times. Currently, in terms of the number of smartphones, surveys show over 1 mobile phone in use per inhabitant in Brazil, totalling up to 234 million smartphones in the country. Adding laptops and tablets sums up to 342 million portable devices as of June 2020, that is 1.6 portable devices per inhabitant (FGVcia 2020). Practically all people of all Socioeconomic Levels have one (more than 85% of the population have a mobile device, TIC Domicílios 2019).
In terms of market research and mobile panels, consumers which are members of these panels will respond more quickly: In 99.2% of households with internet access, the mobile phone is the main device used to access the internet. The use of the mobile phone is already close to all households as the main means of internet access.
At Zinklar, in addition to integrating with mobile panels, we have also spent time creating a better experience that is both enjoyable and non-intrusive for the consumer. Panellists associate us with positive experiences because our studies last no longer than 10 minutes allowing us to capture the attention of consumers which is key for results to be obtained and visualized in real-time. On the other hand, mobile panels help us find the right sample, access more diverse profiles and launch studies that will have a greater number of completed surveys.
Additionally, the tools and channels through which data is collected have also undergone many changes over the last few years. Previously the norm was to have face-to-face interviews and phone calls, while today consumers no longer have the time or interest to do so. Moreover, since a market research interview usually lasts 20 minutes (in Zinklar, we recommend not going over the 10-minute mark), very few consumers are willing to give that time to a company.
Better data quality
There is a constant struggle to have studies with sufficient responses (completed surveys) which have become a frequent issue for traditional research companies. Today’s consumers are less willing to participate, and it is becoming increasingly difficult to find people willing to respond.
Traditional agencies are forced to send dozens of invitations to respondents, increasing the investment to only get poor performance and results.
All of these factors not only increase research costs but also decrease the quality of the results. The mobile phone, on the other hand, gives you direct access to the niche needed, from gin consumers to car owners, all while limiting costs and collecting data faster. We’ve also noticed that it’s a better way to bridge the digital divide, which brings us to our next point.
The purpose of quantitative market research is to have insights that can be trusted and acted upon. To do this, panels have to be statistically significant with national representative samples. This means that the data does not distort reality and is not limited to that particular sample.
In the past, mobile research had been viewed with some scepticism in the industry because researchers could not trust that the data they collected came from the right person, or if the person was lying to access the reward associated with taking a survey. Today, panel providers take many steps to ensure that survey participants are honest. For example, they examine their behaviour throughout the survey and the consistency of their responses, as well as operating by-invitation-only to make sure just those that the panel provider invites can sign up.
Discovering consumption habits as they are happening
We are not exaggerating when we say real-time. Precisely because we spend so much time on our mobile phones, you can reach your customers whenever you want, regardless of what else they are doing.
Research is changing, especially when it comes to conducting day-to-day studies, particularly the way we study the moment of consumption or any study that requires connecting with the consumer at the very moment the action is occurring. For example, we can now launch studies on Sunday afternoon and ask consumers what they are doing, with whom, where and why.
It is revolutionary in terms of designing new methodologies and being able to offer more and better data and answers. We are not the first to notice, Niall Smith has commented that to do mobile research properly researchers now talk to consumers using the present tense rather than the past tense, asking about context and opinions in real-time. This is key to quality research so that interviewees do not rely on memory, as it has been shown to often be a misperception, exaggerated or outright false. Niall Smith has commented that to do mobile research properly researchers now talk to consumers using the present tense rather than the past tense, asking about context and opinions in real-time. This is key to quality research so that interviewees do not rely on memory, as it has been shown to often be a misperception, exaggerated or outright false.
In conclusion, market research is changing, and the role of mobile research is an important factor in this change. In the future, we would not be surprised to find that mobile technology sensors allow us to explore insights like never before, without relying on interviews or questions. These are the reasons why we decided to be 100% mobile – are you ready to embrace it?