Get Connected to the Future of Research
In the most comprehensive survey of its kind, Pollfish, in partnership with PredictWise, has been surveying 1,000 mobile respondents per week since February on 13 key issues in the upcoming election.
The three key wedge issues that are going to decide this year’s election are guns, taxes, and immigration.
This is the first mobile survey of its kind and you can check out the results in the interactive infographic
Before you sit down to write out survey questions, you need to confirm the goals of the survey. This is particularly important if the person who ordered the survey is different than the person writing the questions. There must be no miscommunication between the two regarding the intended purpose of the survey. After the final results are in and the data has been organized, the answers should solve for the original intent.
When the survey results come in, it’s just going to look like a bunch of questions and answers with few connections unless you are prepared to crunch the data. Survey results can be overwhelming, especially if you aren’t used to using surveys in market research. When you have some system prepared ahead of time to organize and analyze the data, the whole process of market research will go more smoothly. You’ll be able to immediately hand over the survey responses to the data entry operator. Then, you’ll be able to drill into the data and start using it to formulate your next move.
Survey questions should always begin with very general questions and then funnel down into the specifics. This helps respondents to get comfortable with using the survey interface and answering the questions. If the first questions are very easy and general, the respondent will feel confident that they can take the survey. It’s important to nurture the respondent’s confidence in the survey, both with regard to your intention behind the survey and with their ability to answer the questions. If the survey seems like it’s going nowhere or has no discernible path, the respondent may lose trust in the company giving the survey, and quit midway through it. If the respondent doesn’t feel they can answer the questions, they are also more likely to quit before the end.
Survey questions should be very straightforward, with obvious answer possibilities. The respondent should never be made to think, “well, it depends on how you look at it,” or “that has a double meaning.” If a question can have a second meaning, then it needs to be rephrased or omitted. First, the respondent might get frustrated and abandon the survey. Second, the answers you receive on double-meaning questions won’t be definitive, and will be harder to analyze.
It’s better to run multiple short surveys than it is to run one overly long survey. Long surveys have a higher chance of being abandoned before the last question than shorter surveys. If you are asking the right questions and phrasing them in as straightforward a fashion as possible, you should be able to get all the data you need from a short survey of 10 or 15 questions.
Respondents deserve to know what you hope to gain by having them take the survey. At the outset, tell them the reason. You don’t have to give away corporate secrets; the reason can be vague, such as “we want to better understand our customers’ buying habits.” At the end, thank them for helping you…and repeat why they took the survey. In addition, offering running question numbers helps respondents know where they are in the survey and how many questions remain.
Some respondents get enjoyment out of giving fake answers. You can weed these out of your data by asking some of the same questions in a different form. Those who are being genuine will answer the same way both times. Untruthful respondents will become evident with this technique and you’ll be able to eliminate those particular survey results.
Use these seven tips every time you use a survey for DIY market research to ensure the highest possible completion rates and accuracy.
Running a business sounds simple enough: All you have to do is create value for customers in a unique and meaningful way that generates profit.
To do that, you know you must first understand your customer. Entrepreneurs and small business owners who don’t consult with target customers to validate the demand for an idea, product, or service before launching one risk failure.
What you may not realize is that the same validation is needed when making critical decisions — even after your successful business is up and operating.
Each year, about 400,000 new businesses are created, but 470,000 shut down, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
Businesses fail for many reasons, of course. But with 66 percent of customers switching to a new company because they were unhappy with a service and 82 percent saying the business could have done something to retain them, customer satisfaction is a major factor.
This is why you should regularly assess your customers’ satisfaction, opinions, and loyalty and use those factors to help navigate your decision-making process. Many tools exist for gathering customer feedback, but market research — done correctly — is one of the most effective.
Market research provides insight into your most valuable asset — your customer — allowing you to make precise and reliable decisions in several ways.
First, it helps you understand both your customer and your competition. It also identifies the level of interest in a product or service and what customers are willing to pay for it, effectively guiding the messaging needed to reach your target market.
Key steps in market research include:
· Choosing the questions that get the information you want.
· Figuring out what kind of data is needed.
· Determining how to collect information.
· Deciding how to analyze the information.
· Developing a plan for using that information.
Successful research and development, product management, branding, pricing, and marketing — all core business functions — depend on customer insight. And great entrepreneurial leaders in today’s ultracompetitive marketplace leverage this information to foster essential innovation.
Entrepreneurs begin with a vision. Market research can affirm the strength of that vision or identify needed tweaks; the success of an idea hinges on a firm understanding of customers’ buying behaviors — the functional, economic, and emotional reasons that customers make purchases. These insights shape product development, marketing, and the ways businesses reach target customers.
You need to know how and where a product fits within a market, what your customer expects, product and market strengths and weaknesses, and what kinds of similar products already exist. This information is impossible to intuit without performing market research.
Market research also helps you develop a cost plan (e.g., pricing models, investments, and resources) and create a marketing strategy (e.g., types of campaigns and channels, how to reach customers, and how to deal with competitors’ reactions).
A good example of business owners putting this into practice involves Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger, founders of a locational iPhone app called Burbn. After spending a year developing Burbn and releasing it, the pair re-evaluated the market and identified some issues with their product — it had too many features and seemed cluttered, making it difficult to compete with market giant Foursquare.
Systrom and Krieger chose to remove many of the features, except for photos, commenting, and liking, and rebrand their app as Instagram. Only by examining the market, customers, and competitors did they find their way onto that new, incredibly successful path.
Many entrepreneurs incorrectly believe conducting market research is too time-consuming, too expensive, and too intimidating. However, today’s digital world provides several quick and affordable ways to gather information to help you make smart business decisions.
Here are four methods small business owners and entrepreneurs can use to gauge customer sentiment through market research.
Focus groups capture in-depth, qualitative feedback, but they come with a few challenges. Focus groups take time to organize, and they require an experienced moderator to avoid bias and keep the conversation focused.
Bias is a focus group caveat, which makes selecting a qualified moderator so important. Experienced moderators know how to ask questions to gather data while eliminating bias. Qualitative research depends on valid and reliable data. If bias exists in a focus group, the results will be skewed, potentially swaying your business decisions in the wrong direction.
If you choose to organize a focus group, asking 8-10 questions would be ideal, but definitely limit the number to a maximum of 12. And be sure to over invite to ensure an adequate number participate, as 10-20 percent of those invited will, on average, be no-shows.
One-on-one interviews can be conducted quickly and affordably to uncover great feedback about products and services, but limitations exist. Reach is often limited because it’s difficult to access a large group of people due to time and geographical constraints.
While interviews can be conducted via phone or face-to-face, many business owners report better results with phone interviews. People tend to be more open to sharing opinions over the phone because they’re in their own environments — and phone interviews are cheaper because no travel is required.
Online research allows entrepreneurs and business owners to connect with a large number of potential customers in a quick, affordable way. To successfully conduct online research, first decide whether the audience you want to reach consists of new or existing customers. Then, develop questions to ask and decide how to reach those people — through your email subscriber list or social media, for example.
Always reach out to people in the way that’s most convenient for them in order to create more potential for open, honest, and bias-free feedback. If you can, locate similar surveys your competitors may be conducting to make sure you don’t end up over surveying any one group. And pay close attention to the timing of your online survey — avoid sending them out around holidays or on weekends, for example.
Keep them short and simple. People often avoid surveys that take longer than 5 or 10 minutes to complete. If the survey must be longer, use page breaks, allow respondents to take the survey in stages, or split it into a few separate surveys.
Mobile surveys combine the principles of traditional market research with the scale, reach, and affordability of the smartphone-enabled economy. While customers enjoy interacting with brands online, only 17 percent of researchers use mobile surveys as part of their strategy.
This presents a huge opportunity for you to get ahead of the curve by using mobile to gather customer feedback. Many people prefer to use smartphones as their main tool of communication. Consequently, 60 percent of the world’s population should have internet access by 2020, thanks to the increasing ubiquity of smartphones.
What’s more, people are more likely to respond when they can do so quickly on a mobile device. Plus, mobile’s unique features, such as geolocation, allow for more accurate data collection.
Customer feedback is absolutely paramount to your business’s success throughout its lifetime, and market research is the best way to solicit their input. Using one or more of these four methods of market research, you can validate a new product, service, or business idea, guide your internal decision-making, ensure that your existing customers are happy, and create strategies for attracting new ones.
Image: The Customer Service Target Market Support Assistance Concept
This article first appears on Tweak Your Biz, and was co-authored with John Papadakis of Pollfish.
In today's cluttered digital world, understanding the customer isn't a nice-to-have -- it's a must-have. Unbeknown to most marketers, though, many online research companies recruit participants from paid panels. While paid-panelist research is expedient and generates high response rates, it may not deliver the high-quality data and insights necessary to make critical business decisions. Therefore, the information you gather may be off-target, and your market research may be killing your brand.
Beyond paid panels, countless other surveying methods are at the modern marketer's disposal, and in this age of smartphone ubiquity, mobile is one of the best survey mediums marketers can use. To receive the most useful feedback and generate actionable data, marketers should optimize their surveys' conditions, designs, and convenience for respondents and use these three methods to ensure survey responses are effective.
Many respondents expect to be compensated to make taking a survey worth the time spent. To strike a proper balance, make the reward enticing enough to tempt participants but not so appealing that it becomes their primary motivator. Consider thanking respondents by entering them into a drawing for a fun prize so that their end goal is to give genuine responses, rather than just to receive compensation.
Panelists are paid for each response (often poorly), so many of them speed through surveys. Consequently, paid panelists who take dozens of surveys at once might be disengaged, distracted, or fatigued, which compromises the quality of the responses.
Survey design is just as important as reducing survey bias. Ask only questions that are relevant and meaningful to the survey's goal, and be cognizant of the respondent's frame of mind, access device, and even the time of day. Engaging respondents on their terms provides the best opportunity to capture and understand their insights.
Surveying the wrong audience or collecting useless data could harm your brand if it leads you to make bad marketing decisions. Therefore, you need to understand both where your target customers typically consume content and how they prefer to interact with brands. Then, design your survey with a goal of touching on as many of those pleasure points as possible by making it convenient and easy for them to take. If your survey design doesn't appeal to your target audience, then you won't glean the valuable insights you need. Instead, you could receive opinions from people who might never even consider your brand, and decisions based on that faulty information could end up hurting your brand's image in the long run.
Go where your audience is most likely to be willing to provide candid answers. It's difficult to get useful data when the audience you need to reach doesn't respond well to the channels you use. People rarely answer telephone surveys, and in-person interviewing isn't practical or cost-effective when trying to obtain responses from a geographically diverse audience, so opting for randomized phone surveys could lead you down the wrong marketing avenues. And if the survey isn't mobile-optimized, it'll miss out on reactions from those who are smartphone-dependent.
Similarly, online surveys don't always see enough traffic to succeed, especially those tailored to desktop users. It is in your best interest to follow customers who are abandoning landlines and desktop applications for the convenience of smartphones. With 57 percent of Americans communicating primarily through their cellphones and 41 percent living without landlines at all, marketers can reach people across many different demographics using mobile technology without sacrificing the quality of the resulting data. Moreover, the popularity of smartphones also allows marketers to easily gather unadulterated customer information through apps, as nearly 9 out of 10 users spend their mobile time on them. Making it simple for respondents is the key to getting the information you seek, which is why mobile surveys are such a good option.
Focusing on mobile surveys is the easiest way to get the feedback you seek, but if you decide to pay panelists, make sure your surveys are worth their time and energy by compensating them appropriately. You'll find more engaged and informed respondents whose candid insights will help you make brand decisions on the basis of accurate feedback, instead of useless data. And, ultimately, you will move that much closer to seeing higher revenue and real customer success.
This originally-authored article first appeared on iMediaConnection.
Ray Beharry is an accomplished leader with a passion for providing and marketing technologies that engage, enrich, and empower others. Ray’s areas of expertise collide in his position as Head of marketing at Pollfish, a company whose online survey tool helps businesses make educated decisions by providing relevant, meaningful, and customizable consumer opinion data in real time. He also serves as an Adjunct Instructor of Marketing at New York University and a mentor at the New York University Tandon School of Engineering’s Startup Incubator.
Know your offline consumers even better
Today online sales have been on the rise and e-commerce has led to better understanding of their consumer behavior that are buying and viewing their products through in-depth search analytics. The brick and mortar stores when they look back on their shelves would vision what if the offline of retail would have been able to know more about their consumer in their space.
That’s where BlueRadianz comes in the scene to help brands and stores to take imprints of their consumer and crafts real time location analytics for the offline world.
One of the local apparel chain stores in our city was keen to know more about their consumers and there in store popular sections. With all the due permissions from store level we did the area survey and then placed our sensors at desired locations ensuring uninterrupted power supply and internet connectivity. We collected the data for 100 days and defined the following metrics.
All of these metrics were studied on hourly, daily and weekly basis.
After creating various visual analytics we did comparative study with in store point of sales data. We formulated real-time dashboards for their management team reflecting various data interpretations. The following are some of the real time visual we delivered.
Blueradianz Real-Time Dashboards
BlueRadianz™ wireless infrastructure captures smart devices and smart phone signatures in Wi-Fi enabled zones for delivering these metrics.
Crowd Location analytics
Estimates the number of visitors, number of unique visitors, amount of time they spend, and the frequency of their visits within the space and its specific zones.
Graphs provide knowledge of movement patterns by these visitors while they are in store. Together, these analytics provide detailed insights into general behavior patterns of people moving and interacting within a venue or open space.
The data from the BlueRadianz™ platform formulates discrete time, location of devices detected within the coverage area of the BlueRadianz™ Crowd Monitor in the wireless network.
These advance dashboards gave finer details about unique and repeat visitors at the store, week wise performance and what was sales conversion ratio.
A custom dashboard was made where we were able to find the brands of phone coming in that retail space. The management has further worked on a unique logic on kind of smart phone visitors they are finding at their stores, deriving intelligence to under their consumers better.
Business Interpretation and Value from Blueradianz Solution
Blueradianz systems comply with telecom regulation and ensure no personal information about visitors is collected; rather, trends and patterns of collective behaviour are gathered based on the discrete time, locations, and device signatures. BlueRadianz is the new mantra for Brands and Retail Spaces where the opportunity of knowing your offline consumer behaviour are delivered with real-time metrics.
Ben Evans said it best, “Mobile is eating the world”.
In this latest podcast from Mobile Marketing Watch, we discuss why taking a mobile-first approach to market research is the way of the future, and why marketers need to tune in to where there customers are.
Some key points covered:
We also discuss:
This 20-minute podcast appears on the Mobile Marketing Watch site.
Hundreds of hours of video presentations on mobile research from MRMW conferences
Singapore-based mobile ad company InMobi has agreed to pay $950k and implement a rigorous internal privacy program to settle US Federal Trade Commission charges of large scale unauthorised location tracking, for ad targeting purposes.
The FTC alleged that InMobi tracked the locations of hundreds of millions of consumers, including children, without their knowledge or consent, misrepresenting its policy as opt-in only. The complaint said the firm actually tracked locations whether or not the apps using its software asked for consumers' permission, and even when they had specifically opted out of location tracking. In addition, specifically in violation of the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), such information was collected from apps clearly aimed at children, despite promising not to do so and without the consent of parents or guardians.
The settlement imposes a $4m civil penalty, suspended to $950,000 based on the company's 'financial condition'. InMobi must also delete all the data collected from children, all the location information collected without consent, and must bring in a comprehensive privacy program subject to an independent audit every two years for the next twenty years.
Jessica Rich, Director of the FTC's Bureau of Consumer Protection, said of the case: 'InMobi tracked the locations of hundreds of millions of consumers, including children, without their consent, in many cases totally ignoring consumers' express privacy preferences. This settlement ensures that InMobi will honor consumers' privacy choices in the future, and will be held accountable for keeping their privacy promises'.
This originally-authored article first appeared on Convince and Convert.
Content marketers have been warned for years to get ready for mobile marketing. Mary Meeker’s 2008 pronouncement that mobile would “overtake fixed Internet access by 2014” came true; we crossed that threshold at full steam to navigate our way through “Mobilegeddon” and beyond.
Google’s 2015 changes to its mobile search algorithm caused collective palpitations over the potential damage it could (and did) do to small businesses. As the changes continue—and best practices regarding new tech adoption and media channel preferences evolve more and more rapidly—it’s high time to re-examine your content marketing strategies.
Are you still giving your target audiences what they want, served up just the way they like it?
Our company’s recent survey of more than 1,000 U.S. mobile phone users—representing a bell curve of ages ranging from 14 to 54 and a male/female split of 38 percent to 62 percent—not only gave us valuable new insights, but they also reaffirmed common knowledge.
We asked respondents about their preferences for internet use. In other words, how, what, where, when, and why do they access it? While the results didn’t come as an enormous surprise, they certainly provided for some intriguing breakdowns across the different demographics.
We’ve culled and analyzed the data, and here are four key ways you can advance your content marketing initiatives using the findings from this survey.
Mary Meeker called it. Of 1,000 respondents, 658 reported that their primary method of accessing the Internet was via their mobile phones. That’s almost 70%!
Why? It comes down to convenience. The content they seek is literally in their back pockets. The top three reasons those surveyed would read an article or blog on mobile instead of a desktop were:
What does that mean for content marketers? It means mobile marketing is about more than just responsive design. Here’s what else smart mobile marketing entails:
Naturally, we can look to the consumer packaged goods sector for standout examples of mobile-first strategies. For instance, take Unilever, 2015’s Mobile Marketer of the Year. Already known for its emotional—and viral—“Real Beauty” campaigns for its Dove skin care line, the company took it to the next level last year by introducing emojis for women of all shapes and colors to use in their text messaging.
Unilever also used mobile ads to direct users to its YouTube tutorials on hair care for Tresemmé, another of its brands. And for its brand Magnum, Unilever launched a campaign in Ecuador that combined geo-targeting with consumers’ inherent urge to create and interact. Using mobile banners to alert nearby consumers of the unique opportunity to design their own ice cream bars, Unilever drove foot traffic to a local shop.
What would you guess is most important to your readers: headline, image, or video? These days, it seems like all of the social platforms are adding or improving their video-sharing and live-broadcasting capabilities. So if you guessed video, you wouldn’t be alone.
But you would be wrong, according to our survey.
Overwhelmingly, the headline is still most important to capturing clicks. Sixty-one percent of adults surveyed said it’s what makes them click. Images came second at 23.6 percent, and video came in last as a reason to click, with only 15.4 percent of adult respondents selecting it.
It is worth noting that the younger demographic, ages 14 to 17, is more egalitarian in their click preferences. Among this group, headline and video were almost evenly split at nearly 38 percent and nearly 36 percent, respectively, with image coming in around 28 percent.
No matter the medium, people want to get to the right content to find the information they need and consume it quickly. With this in mind, content marketers must craft compelling, concise information. Use a headline analyzer like the one at CoSchedule to determine if your headline is click-worthy. If not, the tool’s feedback can help you refine until it is.
Forget stats you might have heard concerning morning, evening, or commuting time as the most popular times for when people want to view content. Almost half of all respondents like to consume their favorite content whenever and wherever they can.
Mobile marketing is an on-the-go, 24/7 business, so you have to make your content accessible to customers and potential customers on social feeds and mobile apps at all times. The survey results state that the majority or respondents prefer content from social media feeds, which is inherently comprised of shorter content.
But mobile doesn’t mean light, so don’t short-shrift readers. It’s not about their attention spans so much as the screen size. Long-form content does work on smartphones, as long as it follows the principles of great user experience design and great content. Don’t shorten your content; write tighter, more captivating copy.
For example, Quartz, the news outlet for digital natives, has an app for that—an iPhone app to illustrate this concept, to be exact—that is “perfect for the train, elevator, grocery store line, or wherever you have a spare moment to catch up on the news.”
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The top three reasons people share content are because it’s humorous (19.92 percent), informational (17.77 percent), or valuable to someone they know (15.85 percent). These survey results remind us that great content must be personalized, meaningful, and relevant to the user. (highlight to tweet)
To be remarkable enough to share, your content has to fulfill people’s needs at an emotional level or provide value for someone they care about. To keep it real, make sure you:
When it comes to content marketing, nothing happens until you get a click—no new leads, no conversions, nor anything approaching demonstrable ROI. Clicks fill the funnel and get those gears going, the levers in motion.
Our survey results offer an up-to-date look at how users across your target audiences are finding, choosing, consuming, reacting to, and sharing content—and, ultimately, how they are converting. Use the perspectives they’ve shared to boost your mobile game with the kind of smart content your audience craves.
What other insights can you draw from these survey findings to inform your content marketing strategy and make your offerings more mobile-responsive?
Published on Jun 6, 2016
Today on RBDR: What marketers need to know about mobile so that they can begin making all sorts of changes that will enhance their marketing.
RBDR is sponsored by Nuance, a Decision Analyst Company, which offers multi-language verbatim coding services that enable clients to quantify the meaning of open-ended answers.
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