Mobile is key in research and surveys

Mobile is key in research and surveys

Mobile research has grown to be a key engagement tool in surveys and interviews for research purposes. Although it is still considered quite new, it has actually been available to researchers for over a decade.

In fact, the Ipsos Group conducted the first SMS mobile survey in 2000. Development of the methodology has been very slow across the industry and even today mobile surveys account for less than 2% of industry revenue, although conducting mobile surveys has never been easier. Mobile phones are increasingly providing more and deeper insights in the lives of consumers and are becoming complementary to online research tools like interactive panels and bulletin boards.

Potential growth

The survey industry predicts that mobile surveys via SMS, mobile Internet and mobile applications will be the biggest areas for potential growth the coming years. Understanding the opportunities and developing the right techniques and a good approach is the recipe for success since mobile engagement has become the standard operating procedure. Ipsos found in a survey in India that 69% of Indians feel SMS is an easier way to express.

Health information

Mobile SMS surveys do not only serve purposes in consumer engagement. A recent example of a successful mobile survey is the fight against Ebola in Sierra Leone, Western Africa. The World Food Programme started a survey in September in an effort to provide information on the Ebola outbreak. Although mobile penetration in Sierra Leone only hits 48%, the response rates were nevertheless above average.

Some of the benefits of mobile research include:

  • Respondents can be reached in the moment, including when they are on the moves
  • Participants respond while they are in their natural environment and are not forced to recall their mind-set and actions at a later stage
  • The mobile phone is a ubiquitous technology with a broad demographic reach. It is also a good way to reach the youth market
  • Other contextual information can be collected including GPS location, images etc.
  • Surveys can be triggered when a respondent enters or exits a location
  • As mobile phones are used regularly, a high percentage of participants respond within the first 10 minutes of contact

How to use mobile surveys? Tips from SurveyMonkey.

Higher response rates. Response rates will improve by conducting surveys on mobile devices, right at the point of your audience’s experience or interaction. Use single choice, multiple choice, and open-ended questions to make responding easy. Posting tweeting or otherwise share surveys via networks will extend the life circle.

Heightened customer engagement. Use mobile polling and surveys to add an element of fun to the customer experience. Post the results on your social sites or Twitter feed, reward the winner with a promotion that builds customer interest, interaction, and loyalty.

Real-time audience feedback. Poll your audience to get a quick sense of how the messages are resonating and use that feedback to plan follow-up press activities or influencer communications.

Customer satisfaction and continuous improvement. Ask your customers or clients to complete a satisfaction survey after they have left your business or event and moved on to other activities in their busy days? Instead, hand them your mobile device and invite them to comment on their experience just before they leave your establishment.

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About the author

Erik Eggens is an allround journalist, editor, content creator and copywriter and takes a keen interest in mobile, finance and politics.

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