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Mobile has changed everything...globally. And it is changing marketing research, forever.

Mobile Has Overtaken the WorldThere is nearly a 100% chance that you, the reader, own a mobile phone. Never in the history of the world has there been a device that has moved as quickly to universal adoption as mobile — not even the Internet. Mobile phone ownership has now reached an epidemic level.

Adults - Age 18 and Older in the U.S.

With Mobile Phones Without Mobile Phones
Americans 85% 15%

Universal ConnectivityRight now, the smart phone landscape is engaged in a competitive battlefield for device dominance. Android vs. iOS, Apps that work on one type, but not the other, multiple cell phone carriers, all with different usage plans and coverage areas. But this will all change. There will be universal connectivity sooner than we expect. Remember the beginnings of television, and the internet, then think about where we are today with both. The evolution of technology happens.

Adults with Phones

Feature Phones Smart Phones
Adults with Phones 54% 46%

Center of Their UniverseFor many mobile users, the device is the center of their personal universe. This is certainly a fact in emerging cultures, where people may not have running water or plumbing; much less a computer or a telephone land line, but they have a smart phone. But it is true as well for the developed world, where mobile users have replaced television watching and landline use with activities on mobile devices.

Necessity, Not ConvenienceWe are rapidly approaching a world where using a mobile device is more than just a helpful tool. Airlines, banks, some retail, and soon all retail, will have evolved their systems to the point where it is not only an option to use a mobile device, but actually the most practical and efficient option, and potentially the only cost-free option for engaging in transactions. It will be a seismic shift away from location-based computers and the use of cash.

Households in the U.S.

With Mobile Phones Without Mobile Phones
Households 90% 10%

Respondent SkillsThe skills needed for participating in marketing research using mobile devices has already been mastered by the public. There is no need for a big teaching moment. The smart phone revolution has taught people how to work with Apps, shop, read online, take photos and videos, switch between programs, do immediate search, use speaker phones, multi-task in hands-free mode, and in general master the devices in their hands. Thank you, mobile industry, for providing the training program needed for respondents to have the skills to participate in research studies using mobile devices.

Mobile Phone Ownership in the World
2000 2001 2002 2003 2004
Mobile Phone Ownership 738.14 960.96 1,156.96 1,415.19 1,761.57
2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
2,206.82 2,746.51 3,369.09 4,033.87 4,648.09 5,382.96

Recall — Rest in PeaceThe internet killed distance. Mobile devices have killed the need for recall. With mobile, feedback is immediate, and in the moment. Everything is time stamped. There's no potential for a respondent to play catch up on a study, and present the input as collected in the moment. The immediacy of input in real time is not confined just to respondents – researchers can toss out questions, or ask for feedback right back to respondents.

A Step AheadMarketing research is embracing the evolution to mobile. It's one of the first industries that's been poking through the technological evolution and developing creative ways to climb into the minds of mobile phone users. Use of mobile research tools is likely to more than double in the current calendar year. A creative researcher has a wealth of options to choose from in study design.

Mobile cellular subscriptions (in millions)
Global Developed nations Developing nations Africa
Mobile cellular subscriptions (millions) 5,981 1,461 4,520 433
Arab States Asia & Pacific CIS Europe The Americas
349 2,897 399 741 969

Sleek and StraightforwardMobile qualitative research brings about results from truly richer data derived from unadulterated insights in the moment. But it's not just the immediacy of feedback... it's the ability to reach more people, more often, more quickly and more efficiently. It replaces complicated and cumbersome with sleek and straightforward.

Optimized to Handle ResearchCivicom 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.

Mobile Phone Ownership (United States)
2000 2001 2002 2003 2004
Mobile Phone Ownership (United States) 109,478,031.00 128,500,000.00 141,800,000.00 160,637,000.00 184,819,000.00
2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
203,700,000.00 229,600,000.00 249,300,000.00 261,300,000.00 274,300,000.00 278,900,000.00
As pioneers in providing practical mobile research solutions to the marketing research community, and advocates of this innovative methodology, Civicom believes in and promotes breakthrough applications for mobile phones, as well as supporting the goal of building a community of shared mobile insights among researchers, developers, and service providers.
Shopper Insights

Shopper Insights

Watch our Video on Using Mobile Devices to Gain Shopper Insights.


Mobile Marketing Research Association - IMPROVING RESEARCH USING MOBILE

Rebecca West, VP Marketing Research Services for Civicom, is a member of the Board of Directors of the Mobile Marketing Research Association. Civicom is a Corporate member. Click here to learn more about the MMRA.

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MRMW Europe

Market Research in the Mobile World - Amsterdam

Video: Civicom Marketing Research Services: Getting to Why? Using Mix and Match Mobile Technologies to Gain Heuristic Insights in the Moment.

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Market Research in the Mobile World - Amsterdam

Civicom Marketing Research Services: Getting In and Out of the Shower and Other Private Places with Mobile Qualitative.

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MSPA, Manila

Mystery Shopping Providers Association

Upcoming Civicom Speaking Event: When Talk Isn't Cheap – Richer Insights from Mystery Shopping through Live Mobile Moments.

Making quick judgments from survey answers to pre-loaded attributes can lead shopper insight professionals in the wrong direction. It is important to dive deeper into the more subtle thoughts of what mystery shoppers see and think before making critical decisions. The ability to analyze the sentiment in what a shopper has to observe and say in the moment of truth leads to more thoughtful business decisions. In this presentation, we will show examples of how important findings were identified through live recorded audio minutes, which were then transcribed for sentiment analysis.

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Mobile Qualitative - Jumbo Java
Hears It Right In the Moment
Mobile Qualitative - Jumbo Java Hears It Right In the Moment

Civicom® Mobile Qualitative enabled Jumbo Java to learn what to change to win devoted fans that would embrace Jumbo Java as their coffee café of choice. Download this case study
Mobile Money - Tracking Transactions
to Gather Qualitative Data
Mobile Money - Tracking Transactions to Gather Qualitative Data

A money transfer company learned how to expand its services by analyzing respondents' text messages about retail transaction experiences.
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Mobile Research
Time to Tone
Mobile Research Time to Tone

A research company gained credibility when we facilitated and simultaneously translated webcam focus groups in five European countries in the local languages.
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