First there were paper surveys, then phone surveys, then web-based surveys. While these survey tool methods to capture feedback from customers, employees, students, and the public at-large still exist, a growing trend in marketing is to collect data from users through their mobile devices. The saturation of mobile devices has opened the door to new avenues for market research that many organizations are taking advantage of.
Whether it is through the iPhone, iPad, Blackberry, Android, or another electronic device, mobile surveys are a modern survey tool that organizations can use to quickly get a pulse on their target market. Mobile device proliferation has led to more opportunities for marketers to reach out and connect to customers more so than ever before. And it is a particularly good medium for targeting young consumers and hard-to-reach audiences.
Regardless of your target market though chances are there is a mobile device at your targeted user's side at all times. Today's "always connected" user uses his or her phone for more than just talking. The smart phone is being used as a gps device, shopping cart, and even a wallet. As the number of smart phones and tablet users continue to rise, the trend is expected to be increased mobile shopping and mobile "paperless" payment for these purchases as well.
With the explosion of smart phones and tablet devices, it comes as no surprise that organizations -- both large and small or for profit or not-for-profit -- have begun using or contemplating using mobile surveys to gain feedback. Even more so than web surveys constructed from online survey software, a mobile survey can catch a user anytime and anywhere.
Utilizing a mobile survey means that survey respondents need not be tied to their desks, which translates to increased survey response rates. It also means that companies can be more empowered and can take advantage of smart phones and tablets to reach consumers "in the moment": when they are interacting with products, receiving services, or at the point-of-sale. Aside from gathering customer service feedback or employee engagement information, a mobile survey is useful for mobile polling, customer contests, and sales promotions.
In addition to the freshness of data received, a mobile survey designed through survey software allows for more access to people than other forms of market research, such as the traditional landline phone medium. Speedy, real-time responses are another beneficial feature of mobile surveys, enabling marketers to view and monitor responses as they come in.
The fundamental shift in the way society at-large shops, communications, and voices their opinions are necessitating change in market research practices. The predominance of mobile technology, coupled with the pervasiveness of social media, are shaping consumer's communication and shopping preferences and behaviors of this generation and next.
Because its a mobile world out there today -- and set to become even more mobile -- market research must keep pace with today's rapidly-expanding mobile technology.
For marketers, it's a matter of survival to get into the mobile research survey game to even the playing field.