Mobile News Mix

Let Gaming Apps Unlock Fast, 100% Efficient Consumer Insights

Posted by MFour on Nov 13, 2018 6:00:00 AM

Blog gaming apps 12Nov18

Benjamin Franklin said that “games lubricate the body and the mind,” and you could probably generate a lively debate as to whether the founding father’s wisdom applies to video games.

There’s no debating the importance of video games to a huge audience of players. Which means that there’s no debating the need for market research professionals to turn their gaze and consumer insights expertise toward understanding gamers– not just as game-players, but as fully-contextualized consumers.

As we’ll point out, mobile game apps aren’t just a gateway to fun for their users and a river of potential profits for their creators, but also a pipeline for all kinds of consumer insights into how gamers fit into a larger universe of shopping and buying.

Newzoo, a marketing and analytics consultant that tracks the gaming and esports industries, estimates the North American video games market at more than $34 billion in 2018, up 14% from 2017. It recently reported that there are 2.3 billion gamers worldwide, who it estimates will spend $138 billion this year, including $70 billion spent by mobile gamers. It’s the first time mobile will have accounted for more than half of annual worldwide gaming revenues.

Market researchers who want to get to know those many mobile gamers are in luck. Thanks to mobile-app targeting, they can be reached with 100% accuracy. You can design a survey that blankets users of the top five gaming apps, or just a single app.  You can ask about their gaming preferences – or their snack and beverage preferences. Mobile app-targeting from MFour gives you a 100% Incidence Rate for connecting with consumers by the apps they use. We simply match the apps you want to target against the apps used by the validated, first-party mobile consumers who’ve downloaded our Surveys On The Go® research app. 

For example, back when the Pokémon Go craze broke out, mobile app targeting enabled us to be the first organization to conduct a systematic survey of Pokémon Go players. Within a single day, we got 1,000 completed responses from 100% validated players. It wasn’t just proof of Pokémon Go’s popularity, but of Surveys On The Go®'s effectiveness, thanks to its own popularity among 2.5 million U.S. consumers who have downloaded it and are beyond-willing to participate in your research.   

If you’re looking for insights into what players think of various video games, app-targeting obviously gives you a fast, direct connection. But it will be just as useful for understanding consumers ages 13 and over for whom playing video games is just part of who they are.  They’ll readily engage with you about products and services across any consumer sectors. Remember, your IR is 100% – a big first step toward getting insights on a fast-turn deadline.

Of course, the same kind of targeting can be done with consumers who use banking apps, news apps, or streaming apps for sports and entertainment. You can focus on their satisfaction with the apps themselves, or just use the connection to get feedback on the snacks these app-users buy, the other forms of entertainment they consume, which electronics stores they frequent, and any other subject that may or may not have to do with their gaming.

You can even ask them if they agree with Ben Franklin that games are good for the mind and body. 

As promised, here’s a look at our study of 1,000 Pokémon Go players, completed in a singled  day just after the game’s July, 2016 debut in the U.S. Just click here.

 

Topics: mobile research, mobile surveys, mobile app targeting, gamers, market research, consumer insights

MFour Hires Team Members in Product Development and Mobile Survey Project Execution

Posted by MFour on Nov 12, 2018 2:44:08 PM

New hires Newsletter 

(Left to right) Renee Curtis, Tatiana Santos and Monica Lee

MFour announces the hiring of three team members who will play major roles in developing new mobile market research products and executing clients’ survey-based projects.

Tatiana Santos joins the staff as a Senior Project Manager who will shepherd clients’ projects from conception through data reporting. She previously was a Senior Project Manager for Ipsos. She worked in banking and investment management before branching into market research. Tatiana earned a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of California, Riverside, and a Master’s degree in Communication Management from the University of Southern California. Outside of work she enjoys yoga, reading, biking and listening to podcasts.

Monica Lee has been hired as Lead of the Fielding and Panel team, responsible for driving quality and consistency in core functions of the survey process. She arrives from comScore, where she was an Insights Analyst. Monica also previously has worked at Kantar Millward Brown, and she was one of the key research leads for the 2016 edition of the American Marketing Association’s annual Gold Report on the market research industry. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Marketing and a Master's in Marketing Research, both from Michigan State University.

Renee Curtis, Senior Product Manager, will help develop innovative new mobile research products and enhance existing ones. She arrives from Broadbean Technology, where she was a team leader and oversaw the launch of a successful job distribution and record keeping software product used by government contractors. She is working toward a Bachelor’s degree in Technological Entrepreneurship and Management at Orange Coast College. Outside of work, Renee likes hiking and is a fine-dining enthusiast; she’s also serious about improving her German and then visiting Berlin.

Welcome aboard, Tatiana, Monica and Renee!

Topics: mobile research, mobile market research, market research, consumer insights

See How We Watched Consumers Flock to Starbucks for a Holiday Cup Giveaway

Posted by MFour on Nov 7, 2018 11:47:33 AM

Blog P2P Starbucks giveaway 6Nov18

Three weeks ahead of Black Friday, Starbucks Coffee found itself with its own unique doorbuster on its hands. The coffeehouse giant was offering a free, reusable cup with cheerful holiday designs featuring the Starbucks logo to any customer who came in on Friday, Nov. 2 and ordered one of Starbucks’ special seasonal coffee drinks.

The result? A whopping 41% spike in foot traffic over the average Friday. There was even an apparent echo effect: on Saturday, Nov. 3, the day after the one-day offer, foot traffic was 16% greater than the average Saturday.

Market researchers interested in gaining insights into coffeehouse chains and quick-serve restaurants can see the spike in foot traffic for themselves in chart form on MFour’s Path-2-Purchase® Platform. Plug in “Starbucks” on the free Path-2-Purchase tracking tool, and you’ll see the big surge that occurred on Nov. 2-3, and how visits on the day of the cup giveaway compared to every other day in the preceding three months.

Path-2-Purchase is unique in its ability to track validated, representative U.S. consumers’ visits to 12.5 million locations, including all of the top 1,000 retail and restaurant chains. On the technology side it’s powered by advanced GPS location technology and MFour’s unrivaled Surveys On The Go® (SOTG) mobile research app. On the people side, SOTG gives researchers the ability to connect with the 2.5 million first-party consumers who have downloaded the app.

SOTG users give double opt-in consent to have their movements tracked using their smartphones’ GPS features, in exchange for opportunities to receive location-specific surveys that earn them cash rewards. It’s these demographically profiled consumers’ engagement with SOTG that makes it possible for marketers and market researchers to see where they go, when and how often – and to gain otherwise unobtainable insights into events such as the Starbucks cup giveaway.

Tracking is only a means to the most productive research end: connecting with the consumers you’ve tracked to survey them about the experiences they’ve had at any stop along their paths to purchase. For example, a researcher interested in the competition in coffee could use Path-2-Purchase data to identify validated Starbucks customers and send them surveys. You also could overlay Starbucks and Dunkin’ Donuts locations to compare visitation and identify important consumer segments. Segments might include coffee-agnostics who go to both Starbucks and Dunkin’ Donuts, or loyalists who are customers of one but never the other.

Once you've identified your segments, you can survey those consumers to understand the all-import “why” behind their coffee buy.

We know there's no shortage of GPS visitation tracking providers, but all the rest are only capable of counting footprints and spitting out numbers. The location data they give you ends there, leaving the actual consumers who've left those footprints all but invisible.

But when you conduct location-based mobile research using Surveys On The Go, the validated, first-party consumers you track are profiled, real and reachable, so you can connect with them for the "why" behind the buy.

As it turned out, Dunkin’ Donuts managed to hold its own during Starbucks’ big Friday cup giveaway: nationwide, its traffic fell just 1% below the Friday average.  

In fact, Starbucks’ cup giveaway actually turned out to be a little too successful. The Today Show reported on its website that supplies quickly ran out at some locations, leaving customers disappointed. 

If you’re so inclined, we can identify and put you in touch with members of the SOTG consumer panel who went to a Starbucks on Nov. 2 (or on any other day). Ask them about their experiences with the special giveaway. Are they in love with their free cups? Are they miffed because the Starbucks they went to had run out? Did they try one of the special holiday brews? Was it delish or just so-so? And how did the cup giveaway impact their overall satisfaction with the Starbucks brand?

When it comes to coffee, or anything else in the consumer realm, Path-2-Purchase® Platform gives you a heaping, caffeinated cup of quick-turnaround research you can’t accomplish anywhere else.

Topics: geolocation, market research, Path-2-Purchase™ Platform, consumer panel, mobile tracking, foot traffic

Why Is `Why?' the Market Research Question Your Geolocation Provider Can't Answer?

Posted by MFour on Nov 6, 2018 7:00:00 AM

Blog Toddler Why 2Nov18

Toddlers do it incessantly. So why can’t virtually all of the location-research providers who’ve been trying to sell the market research industry on their ability to track consumers’ store visits?

We’re talking about being able to ask the fundamental question, “why?” As anyone who’s spent much time with little kids can attest, it’s never far from their tongues.

Why?

Because “for children, `why’ questions help them make sense of the world around them….These `why’ questions also help spur and accelerate learning,” says Rebecca Palacios, one of America’s most respected experts on early childhood education, in a Huffington Post article titled “Why Do Children Ask Why?”

So here’s our own “why” question of the day:

Why can’t those location-research tech and analytics providers let you do as a consumer insights pro what you did almost nonstop when you were knee high to a Great Dane?

Why won’t they let you ask the “why” behind the buy?

Here’s why: technology and data analytics providers don’t really know market research.

They know how to find undifferentiated people, and tell you how many of them have gone to a given location. They’re able to collect footprints, but they can’t help you connect with the actual human beings who are leaving them. They can’t help you ask “why,” the most important question when it comes to understanding and influencing consumer behavior.

Yes, footprint data can be illuminating to an extent as a standalone, but its most advanced use is to point you in the right direction in your quest to truly connect with consumers and understand the many whys behind where they go – and what they think, feel, see and do while they’re there.

MFour creates location technology, but we do it in the specific context of perfecting it for the sake of market research. We pioneered building location capabilities for market research, and we’re the only company to have simultaneously built an all-mobile, validated first-party panel for that technology to track.  (with their double opt-in informed consent).

You’re in the business of obtaining a 360-degree view of consumer behavior, and so are we. Not just the “where,” but the “why.”

  • Why did a consumer we located as he passed in view of a billboard for Target visit a Target store three days later? 
  • Was it attributable to the ad exposure, or just a coincidence?
  • Why do some consumers alternate frequently between Target and Walmart – as reflected in their location footprints?
  • Why are some big box shoppers loyal to one while completely rejecting the other?

The moral of this post is that you should never let any market research provider sell you short by not permitting you to unleash your inner three-year-old. Don’t settle for footprints and algorithmic models that can’t begin to give you the “why” to questions like the ones above.

Always insist on the “the why” behind the buy.

Why?  Because you can’t afford not to.

To learn more about how to target, track and survey mobile consumers by using MFour's Path-2-Purchase® Platform, just click here

 

Topics: consumer survey, mobile research, geolocation, market research, Path-2-Purchase™ Platform, surveys, mobile app research, in-store surveys, consumer panel, mobile consumer panel

5 Tips: Using Mobile Market Research To Maximize App-Generated Revenue

Posted by MFour on Nov 1, 2018 6:00:00 AM

Blog Money Making App 30ct18

Is it time to conduct market research into your brand’s app?

Does it matter how it stacks up against your competitors’ apps?

Of course it matters. Apps are by far consumers’ technology of choice for accessing digital content. Getting them to download your app is like discovering a silver mine. And getting them to use your app regularly is like finding the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. A successful app can turn the purchase funnel into a water slide: consumers ride down the digital chute to swim in your revenue stream.

Advanced mobile market research tools for evaluating consumers’ opinions about any app are now readily available. Significantly, they are housed inside an advanced mobile research app that meets validated, first-party consumers in the mobile-app space where they’re most comfortable and most easily engaged. The app is Surveys On The Go® (SOTG) from MFour, which puts consumer insights professionals in touch with a mobile research audience of 2.5 million U.S. consumers who consistently give it the highest satisfaction ratings of any market research app - 4.5 stars out of 5 across more than 100,000 ratings posted at Apple’s App Store and Google Play.

Here are some tips on how you can leverage mobile-app research capabilities. 

  • Fast-turnarounds are no problem when you’re surveying users of any brand’s app. They’re identifiable by the apps they use, so you can target known app users of any app you want to study.
  • Get a thorough audit on your own brand’s app. Are load times fast enough? Does the display and ease of navigation meet consumers’ expectations? Remember, your app’s users are always judging it against their best app experiences.
  • Now that you’ve gained intimate knowledge about your own app’s performance, the next step is to replicate the same research to get competitive intelligence on your competitors’ apps.
  • Is there dissatisfaction in the ranks of a competitor’s app users? That’s an opportunity, and you can get all the details on what’s making your rival vulnerable on the mobile-app front.
  • Does a competitor’s app get higher scores with its users than your app gets with your users? Now you know how much higher you have to set the bar. 

Here’s an example of what a brand can accomplish by upgrading its app. This recent article from Mobile Marketer details how the USA Today Network, a news group of more than 100 local outlets nationwide, achieved significant gains in reader engagement by improving the performance of its mobile website and mobile app.

Identifying and reaching out to first-party consumers by the apps they use opens many other doors to relevant, highly-specific data. And that 100% incidence rate always guarantees you a perfectly streamlined process for the utmost in speed and accuracy. Apps are a great tool for segmenting consumers to gain targeted feedback on any topic that’s relevant to your market research. But more on that later.

 

 

Topics: mobile research, mobile app targeting, mobile market research, smartphone apps, app tracking, market research, competitive intelligence

Halloween Shopper Survey Reveals the "Why" Behind the Candy Buy

Posted by MFour on Oct 17, 2018 5:48:12 PM

 Blog Halloween Survey 16Oct18

It comes as little surprise that candy is the topmost item on Halloween shoppers’ lists. But it takes the right kind of mobile market research to get to the “why” behind the buy, and MFour’s recent survey of 1,800 U.S. consumers who plan to celebrate Halloween illuminates what really counts: even when the candy is presumably for little trick-or-treaters, adults are most likely to buy what tickles their own palates.

Fielded in mid-October, with the Halloween shopping season surging toward its Oct. 31 climax, the study located demographically representative natural shoppers in big box stores. All belong to the only all-mobile, first-party consumer panel, whose members participate via their smartphones, using the pioneering mobile research app, Surveys On the Go®.  

Results showed that 71% of respondents had bought Halloween candy within the previous 48 hours. But for many, candy-shopping was hardly over: 36% of respondents said they expected to buy more candy before the holiday arrived. As to the "why" behind the buy:

  • Among all respondents, 29% said their own personal preference is the most important factor in deciding which kind of candy to buy.
  • Other leading factors were “price,” cited as most important by 24% of respondents, and “value,” cited by 19%.
  • 16% said quality was most important.
  • Among parents, 20% said they primarily select their own favorite candy, and 20% said their kids’ tastes come first, and they pick the Halloween candy their children like best.
  • Among respondents who are not parents, 40% said they went for their personal favorite. Such are the sacrifices of parenthood, and the little indulgences that come with not having to placate one’s own little angels and monsters.

In all, 64% of the mid-October respondents said they still had some Halloween shopping to do in the remaining days before Oct. 31. That presents bountiful opportunities across several product categories – and a continuing advantage for retailers and brands that can quickly grab consumer insights that speak to Halloween shoppers’ preferences and motivations.

Among the most useful quick-turnaround approaches are mobile in-store surveys, such as the one MFour conducted to get those 1,800 fast completes over a single mid-October weekend.

In addition to the kinds of data exemplified by this study, marketers and consumer insights professionals can get a uniquely rich understanding of holiday shoppers and product-intenders by locating them in-store and then following them through the aisles.

Let them be your brand’s or your store's auditors, telling and showing you whether your products are shelved in the right places to maximize sales. Also, are in-store displays set up properly and having the desired impact? Are these validated shoppers satisfied with the store's layout, cleanliness and service?

Smartphone photo and video capabilities give you ironclad validation of what shoppers are encountering in the aisles. And by asking respondents to make “video selfies,” you’ll get the most vivid, in-their-own-words testimony to reveal the emotional context behind the “why.”

Mobile-app location studies are also your best safeguard against the recall decay that erodes the quality of online consumer research. Questions that begin with phrases such as  “thinking back on your last visit to a store…” are inherently at risk of failure due to distorted memories. The answers are far more reliable when you know exactly where and when that visit occurred, and gather responses during or just after the visit, before recall bias sets in.

In our Halloween survey, respondents received push notifications of a survey opportunity after they had been located as they entered a Target or Walmart store. They were required to answer within 48 hours to ensure against recall bias.

Among respondents who said they still had Halloween shopping to do during the coming two weeks:

  • As noted, 36% expected to buy candy.
  • 30% were still looking for costumes.
  • 24% intended to shop for pumpkins.
  • 22% were still shopping for decorations.
  • 16% were looking to buy materials for homemade decorations.
  • 10% were going to buy materials needed to make their own costumes.
  • 13% intended to buy alcoholic beverages for their Halloween celebrations.

Consumers in this group are not necessarily procrastinators. 84% of those who said they still had more holiday shopping to do also said they had, in fact, made a Halloween purchase during the same store visit in which they received the survey invitation. 70% said they had bought candy during that visit, 49% had bought decorations, 33% had bought costumes, and 31% had purchased pumpkins. Again, by requiring responses within 48 hours, the study decisively minimized recall bias. Typically, mobile surveys fielded via SOTG have a 25% response rate within an hour, and 50% within 24 hours. The result is data you can trust.

Asked where they intend to shop for those upcoming Halloween purchases, most favored big box retailers across the major Halloween product categories. 60% said they would shop big boxes such as Target or Walmart for candy, 58% for decorations, and 34% for costumes. 

The next most-favored stores were grocery stores for candy (12%), party stores for decorations (13%), and Halloween specialty stores for costumes (22%). Online shopping figured prominently for costumes (20% of respondents), but less so for decorations (6%). Only 3% of respondents said they most often buy Halloween candy from an online store.

We’ll throw in a few more fun facts from the survey:

  • About half of the survey participants said they planned to wear a costume as part of their Halloween celebration.
  • Witches of various kinds were the most popular (5%).
  • Next came cats (3.6%) and characters from the “Batman” franchise – Batman, the Joker, the Riddler and Cat Woman (3.5%).
  • Other favorites were vampires, zombies and pirates (2.4% each), and skeletons (2.2%).

Ten respondents said they would dress as current celebrities, including two each for Donald Trump and Britney Spears. Taylor Swift, Cher, Tom Cruise, Conor McGregor, Mike Ditka and children’s TV stars the Kratt Brothers also can expect to have doppelgangers moving about on Halloween.

To learn more about how to dress your research for success and end your reliance on data that's just masquerading as reality, just get in touch by clicking here

 

 

Topics: mobile surveys, point of emotion, geolocation, market research, consumer insights, mobile app research, in-store surveys

A Survey of Restaurant Customers Shows How Data Can Capture Emotions

Posted by MFour on Oct 2, 2018 6:00:00 AM

Blog fast food 28Sept18

Here’s a consumer insights finding from the world of quick-service restaurants (QSRs) that should resonate with marketers and researchers in other industries as well: it’s not just their wallets or taste buds that are driving consumers' choices. It's their emotions.

MFour fielded a mobile geolocation study and collected survey data from more than 2,000 GeoValidated® QSR customers of seven leading national brands. The results underscore how important it is for brands to understand the role emotion plays in propelling buying decisions.

Located and surveyed just after they'd left a QSR, respondents were asked their single most important reason for choosing that brand on that day. They were given 18 possible motivations, and picked just one. Having a “craving” for their choice's offerings – a completely emotional experience – was the highest-ranking answer. 

  • 23% chose “I was craving” [the brand].
  • 18% chose “it was the most convenient for me today.”
  • 15% chose “[the brand] is affordable.”

Respondents had been drawn almost equally from among the seven QSR brands, and were geolocated at a store. They were required to complete the questionnaire within 24 hours. 

Unlocking the emotional component of buying decisions – the cravings, sense of excitement, urgency, or other feelings that loom so large – requires these three indispensable inputs:

  • GPS-powered mobile geolocation technology that’s a unique capability of smartphones
  • An all-mobile, first-party consumer panel whose members can be located in the right places at the right time so they can respond to mobile surveys while emotions are still fresh.
  • A state-of-the art mobile survey app.

The Surveys On The Go® app gives you all three. If you’re ready right now to talk about how in-app mobile research capabilities can put you in touch with shoppers' emotions to gain the fullest understanding and achieve your brands' business goals, just click here. And if you'd like to take a deeper-dive into how it works, read on. 

A validated, representative mobile consumer panel is paramount.  More than 2.5 million U.S. consumers have download Surveys On The Go® (SOTG), motivated by the opportunity to take part in research while earning cash rewards. In-app mobile surveys gratify respondents' entrenched desire to have seamlessly engaging experiences on their smartphones.

  • Once they’ve downloaded SOTG, users give their informed permission to let the app access to their phones’ location services, so they can be tracked through all their buying journeys and qualify for location-specific studies.
  • Location studies such as the QSR survey track consumers' natural store visits and identify them as soon as they have arrived at a place that’s relevant to the research project at hand. 
  • Once detected in a desired location, consumers receive an in-app push notification alerting them to a survey opportunity.
  • The push can arrive while they're still in the store, or just after they've left; in-store surveys document the shopping experience prior to purchase, and after-visit surveys also capture the purchase itself.
  • Either way, researchers are reaching respondents at the Point of Emotion® at which buying decisions come to a head.
  • Expect response rates of 25% within an hour, and 50% within 24 hours -- compared to the industry norm of 1% to 5%. The differentiator is the unique mobile-app experience.

In the case of the QSR preferences study, respondents were required to complete the survey within 24 hours of their visit. There’s little point in asking a QSR customer the most important reason for his or her visit more than 24 hours after the fact. By then, the Point of Emotion® is long gone, and any response will be rife with recall bias. Ask yourself whether you can remember your most recent visit to a QSR, and state your most important reason for choosing it. If you're not an extremely loyal, extremely frequent customer of a particular brand, you might struggle to answer.

To sum up:

The only way to get a fully-recalled, emotionally-informed understanding of consumers’ preferences and motivations is in-app mobile research with an engaged, first-party mobile panel.

If you have a craving for this kind of data, let's talk. Just click here.

Topics: mobile surveys, geolocation, market research, consumer insights, consumer experience, quick serve restaurants

Competitive Retail Insights from Margaritaville: Who's Winning Florida's Alcoholic Beverage Battle?

Posted by MFour on Sep 25, 2018 6:00:00 AM

Every consumer insights study should tell a story, and there’s quite a story market researchers could tell about a classic retail competition between two beer, wine and spirits chains that are fighting it out in Florida.

It’s the story of ABC Fine Wine & Spirits, which was founded in 1935 and operates only in the Sunshine State, versus Total Wine & More, which opened its first store in Delaware in 1991 and now operates in 23 states.

Telling this or any other consumer insights story requires the right tools. And the only one that really can do the job for competitive research is Path-2-Purchase® Platform. Created by MFour, it gives marketers and market research pros unprecedented, day-by-day, at-a-glance data on which validated consumers are visiting which retail locations. One of its most important uses is visualizing and understanding how competition in a given business category is playing out among retailers across the United States.

The battle between ABC Fine Wine & Spirits and Total Wine & More is particularly intriguing because of the two companies’ differences.

  • One is home-grown and indigenous to Florida, while the other treats Florida as an important market, but only part of a nationwide growth strategy.
  • ABC’s stores tend to be smaller, averaging 8,000 to 12,000 square feet and carrying 3,000 wines, 1,000 beers, and 2,900 spirits, according to the company’s website.
  • Total Wine & Spirits calls its locations "superstores," typically stocking 8,000 wines, 3,000 spirits, and 2,500 brands of beer. It advises prospective real estate partners that the “optimal” store size is 20,000 to 25,000 square feet.

Users of Path-2-Purchase® can get a quick overview of this and any other retail competition by calling up a visualization of all visits made by real, first-party members of the world's largest all-mobile consumer panel. Depending on your needs, you can look at nationwide totals, or break data down by state or DMA. In an instant you'll see visitation patterns segmented by age, gender, income, education, ethnicity and dozens of other variables.

So how did this summer's battle for alcoholic beverage shoppers go between ABC Fine Wine & Spirits and Total Wine & Spirits? Let's look at the Path-2-Purchase® data. 

  • ABC had one of its busiest day of the summer on July 4, while at Total Wine it was just another Wednesday.
  • Having discovered that data point on Path-2-Purchase®, an interested researcher could have quickly fielded a survey to ABC’s validated July 4 visitors to ask what had brought them in.
  • A quick look at the Path-2-Purchase® dashboard shows that over a 90-day period through Sept. 17, ABC drew 61% of the two chains' combined foot traffic, to 39% for Total Wine & More.
  • But looking at weekends only (Fridays through Sundays), Total Wine & More raised its share of combined foot traffic to 43%.

Path-2-Purchase® also reveals that something happened in mid-summer that shifted the competitive dynamic.

  • From late June through July, the battle for weekend foot traffic was closely fought. ABC accounted for 53% of weekend visits, to 47% for Total Wine.

  • But from August through mid-September, ABC gained 7 percentage points, increasing its share of combined visits to 60%, while Total Wine's share slipped to 40%. 

Having observed this shift on Path-2-Purchase® Platform, a researcher could target and survey validated store visitors to discover the "why" behind this observed reality. Did ABC Fine Wine & Spirits introduce special discounts that led to the August-September boost in traffic? You'd be able to ask the exact consumers who could tell you the story. For example:

  • ABC shoppers who had visited earlier in the summer, but visited more frequently after August 1.
  • Total Wine shoppers whose Path-2-Purchase®  journeys showed they had switched to ABC.
  • ABC customers who hadn't shopped at either store before August 1. 
Here are some additional at-a-glance Path-2-Purchase® data points that researchers could use to visualize the competition between the brands:  
  • ABC’s average weekend visitation rose 9% after Aug. 1, while Total Wine’s traffic didn’t budge from earlier in the summer. Again, what had ABC done to boost its performance?
  • Because Total Wine saw neither a gain nor a loss during weekends after Aug. 1, was it keeping its customers while ABC grabbed market share from other alcoholic beverage retailers, such as C-stores, groceries, and smaller, independent liquor stores?
  • When it came to per-store foot traffic, Total Wine’s “superstore” model gave it an advantage. It attracted  slightly more than twice as many visits per store as ABC. But ABC had strength in numbers, with more than three times as many Florida locations as Total Wine.
  • For ABC, 55% of visits were from customers with incomes under $50,000, compared to 49% for Total Wine (the 104% visitation total includes brand-agnostics who shopped at both stores – a group you can identify, track and survey with Path-2-Purchase®).
  • The most pronounced income differential between the two brands' visitors was among shoppers earning $25,000 to $34,999. ABC received 21% of its visits from that group, compared to 11% for Total Wine.
  • Total Wine received 15% of its visits from consumers earning $100,000 or more, compared to 10% for ABC. 
  • There was little racial/ethnic difference between the two brands' clientele. Whites made up 64% of ABC’s consumers, and 60% for Total Wine. Hispanics accounted for 14% of ABC’s foot traffic, and 18% at Total Wine. And 14% of customers were African American at both retailers.

The thing to remember is that Path-2-Purchase® Platform truly is a platform – a comprehensive, constantly updated database that captures the observed purchasing journeys of a validated, first-party consumer panel. By visualizing journey patterns, some researchers will identify important new consumer segments they may not have been aware of before. Many will design and field surveys that will efficiently capture responses from precisely the consumers they most need to understand. And still others will append observational data from Path-2-Purchase® to existing survey results, providing the context they need to bring their reports and presentations alive with the most compelling storytelling.

For a productive discussion about how Path-2-Purchase® can meet your projects’ specific needs (and perhaps earn you a special, congratulatory champagne toast from your colleagues and stakeholders), just click here. Until then, Salud!

Topics: geolocation, market research, Path-2-Purchase™ Platform, competitive insights, in-store, data visualization, passive data

Your Competitive Intelligence Goldmine: Know What The Other Guy's Customers Are Feeling Before They're Done Shopping

Posted by MFour on Sep 24, 2018 3:14:25 PM

Blog Consumer Emotions 24Sept18

“An understanding of consumer purchase behavior must be based on knowledge of human emotion and include the paramount influence that emotions have on decision-making.”

That’s the fundamental takeaway from “How Emotions Influence How We Buy,” an article in Psychology Today. It carries direct significance for consumer insights pros, especially those who gather competitive intelligence. To understand why people buy one brand over another, or shop one store over another, you have to connect with them while their feelings about a shopping experience are still running high. We call it the Point-of-Emotion®. To accomplish this you don't need to stand with them physically, side-by-side. Instead, you join them by leveraging advanced mobile market research technology that lets you find and survey shoppers through their smartphones.

Here's how it works:

When your targeted consumers naturally enter a store – yours or a competitor’s – they automatically receive a survey invitation on their phones, via an in-app push notification. Invitees respond far more quickly and attentively to pushes than to the old method of requiring them to check their email for a link to an online survey.

  • You can ask shoppers to take a survey while they’re still in a competitor's store, for feedback on experiences they’re having right now with product placement, selection, promotions, service and overall shopping atmosphere. You’re meeting them at the crucial Point-of-Emotion®.
  • Or you can hold off while they're still inside the store, and invite them just after they've left. Within minutes, survey responses will start streaming in, telling you what your competitors' customers experienced in the aisles and at checkout, while it's still fresh in mind. 
  • After-visit surveys get response rates of 25% within one hour of notification, and 50% within 24 hours. Nothing else gets you as close to the moment of purchase and the Point-of-Emotion®.
  • To get the most intense emotional feedback, you can ask respondents to make “video selfies” on their phones, in which you’ll see the emotional impact of their experiences on their faces, hear it in their voices, and listen as they put their experiences into their own words. 
  • When it’s time to present your findings and recommendations to decision-making stakeholders, mobile video puts them, too, at the customers' Point-of-Emotion®. Seeing and hearing opinions  from actual consumers grabs their attention and makes the consumer story you're telling more real.
  • Smartphone capabilities also give you reliable validation of purchases. Just ask respondents to photograph or make screen shots of receipts, or take pictures of the products.

Follow Consumers All Along the Path-2-Purchase®

In competitive intelligence, as in other forms of consumer insights research, you can't afford to ask people about shopping experiences they had more than a day or two after the fact. By then, recall has faded and answers turn unreliable. Commonplace screener questions such as “Have you shopped at Target in the past 90 days?” or “Recalling the last time you bought toothpaste, which of these brands did you consider?” will get you recall-biased data that is mainly just guesswork on the respondents' part.

Until now, the research industry has settled for guesswork instead of data because there was no better alternative. But thanks to Point-of-Emotion® mobile geolocation research, the guessing game is over.

Now you can start your competitive intelligence projects by instantly visualizing your targeted consumers’ actual journeys to more than 12.5 million commercial locations in the U.S., including the top 1,000 retailers.

You’ll see their validated visitation data on Path-2-Purchase® Platform, a unique tool that identifies who shops at your competitors’ stores, how often, on what days of the week and times of day, and for how long.

Path-2-Purchase® tracks members of a demographically and geographically representative, first-party consumer panel of more than 2.5 million U.S. smartphone owners, ages 13 and up.

They’re all strictly validated, because they’re all being tracked on mobile. Every member has joined by downloading Surveys On The Go® (SOTG), the definitive mobile research app, to his or her phone. All research activity, including location tracking, takes place via the app. Consumers have opted in to allow tracking, in exchange for the location-specific survey opportunities you'll be sending their way.

It’s been said that a big part of success lies in just showing up. By applying in-app mobile solutions to competitor insights, you'll show up when and where it matters the most -- standing next to your competitors' customers, asking questions at the Point-of-Emotion®. To learn more about how to connect at the right place and time for the most accurate, most revealing competitive intelligence insights, just complete the form below.


Topics: location based survey, point of emotion, geolocation, market research, competitive intelligence

It's No Fantasy: Online Research Is Like a Player Who Has Hung on Too Long

Posted by MFour on Sep 19, 2018 6:00:00 AM

Blog Football Player 13Sept18

If you're a Fantasy Football player, you probably have been researching yards gained, touchdowns scored and interceptions thrown in your breaks from your main research agenda as a consumer insights pro. Assuming that your Fantasy League hasn't taken over as your main research agenda.

Chances are that one of the research questions you faced was how to evaluate aging stars against emerging young guns. Are Tom Brady, Philip Rivers, Ben Roethlisberger and Eli Manning still Fantasy-worthy, their advancing age?

Or would you be better off suiting up one of the new guys -- Sam Darnold, Deshaun Watson or Josh Allen, for example?

Believe it or not, you face similar choice when you're wearing your market research hat instead of your Fantasy Football GM's cap. Can you eke out another project with legacy data from online surveys? Or is it time to recognize that your longtime warhorse has worn out, and its time to jump to the speed, range and versatility of mobile data? If you make the wrong decision, you won't just lose a Fantasy League membership fee. You'll bring in suspect data that could undermine multi-million dollar business decisions.

Our advice as you decide whether to stick to comfortably familiar online studies is to consider Bret Favre, who was one of the greatest -- until he hung on just a bit too long to get the job done. There's no sentimentality in business, so you need to be sure about the data quality you're getting.

Favre had an epic career that lasted 20 seasons – including more than 17 straight seasons in which he set an all-time NFL record by playing in 321 consecutive games (playoffs included). No quarterback in pro football history threw the ball more (10,960 attempts) or completed more passes (6,781). Along the way, Favre won three straight Most Valuable Player awards in the 1990s, and quarterbacked his Green Bay Packers to two Super Bowls, winning one.

Online research also has had its time of glory. For about two decades it was the most prolific survey mode in the consumer data game, and it provided many most-valuable insights. But as was the case with Brett Favre -- and just about every other great athlete -- time and change take their toll. Online research is in its twilight now, its performance and capabilities greatly diminished from its prime.

The statistics show that Favre hung on one year too many: in 2010, his last season, he threw nearly twice as many interceptions as touchdowns, had the worst quarterback rating of his career (69.9, down from peak years when he was always above 90), and suffered a sprained shoulder and a concussion that kept him out of three games, ending that mighty streak of consecutive games played. Meanwhile, the Packers had moved on, trading Favre to clear the way for Aaron Rodgers, who quickly established himself as a great, Super Bowl-winning quarterback for a new generation.

And so it is with online research as it stands today. Quality completes are harder to come by, projects are being routinely intercepted by fraudulent survey bots, and doubts have set in about online’s ability to deliver a demographically representative consumer panel. Increasingly, we see online providers resorting to Hail Mary tactics such as routing, river sample, and multi-source panel-blending -- and sometimes even claiming that approach is a virtue. But the result is compromised data and widespread discontent with project results. 

Meanwhile, the game has moved on to its next dominant player, in-app mobile research conducted with a validated, first-party consumer panel. Brands and major market research firms are becoming increasingly aware of what it can accomplish. To have a productive conversation about how in-app mobile can help you effectively tackle your projects' specific needs, just click here.

Topics: mobile research, market research, consumer insights, pro football

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