Mobile News Mix

MFour Announces ProductCheck™ for Validated, Colorful In-Store Insights into Product Placement, Packaging and Preferences

Posted by MFour on Mar 20, 2019 5:39:00 PM

MFour Mobile Research introduces ProductCheck™, a new offering that captures mobile market research panel members' opinions and feelings about products and displays at the exact moment they are standing in store aisles looking at them.

By locating and then surveying validated, first-party mobile consumers, brands and researchers get immediate, trustworthy data on product placement and visibility, whether packaging stands out and attracts, and whether the product’s in-the-moment shelf appeal is sufficient to influence intent to purchase. Clients also gain in-depth intelligence on how shoppers perceive competing products and brands. Researchers come away with a confident understanding of how well the product stands out when surrounded by other products in the same category.

“ProductCheck™ helps brands position themselves for greater market share by combining observed location data with event-triggered surveys that measure products’ on-shelf visibility and appeal,” said Chris St. Hilaire, MFour’s CEO and co-founder. “Now researchers can color store-visitation data with survey opinions, and validate survey opinions with mobile visitation data.”

Until now, in-store product evaluations have been subject to inherent bias because standard “mission” and “mystery shopper” methods call for recruiting consumers who in the real world might not even shop for the product that’s being studied, nor shop at the stores they’re sent to.

ProductCheck™ focuses on natural shoppers, not recruits. It connects you with validated, first-party consumers who’ve gone to the store naturally, without prompting. In-store surveys fielded through MFour’s Surveys On The Go® mobile research app screen for natural category intenders, who are then prompted to go to that category’s aisle and continue answering the in-store survey.

Researchers collect data at the Point-of-Emotion® – the precise moment when respondents are encountering and evaluating the product, so that their answers are colored by the immediacy of the experience. You can also ask respondents to take photos and videos of products on-shelf to give you the clearest visualization and understanding of in-store reality. These images and videos are captured in our survey app and are perfect for adding color and story-telling impact to reports, presentations and business recommendations.

A full-service version of ProductCheck™ lists at $18,000 and includes expert, in-house survey design and programming consultation and analysis. Self-Service ProductCheck™ via MFourDIY® lists at $9,000 and includes a templated suggested questionnaire.

 

Topics: mobile market research, purchase path, always-on data, retail research, ProductCheck™

MFour's Partnership with IRI Results in New Insights on Cannabis Users

Posted by MFour on Mar 13, 2019 9:44:59 AM

MFour partnered with leading research firm IRI for IRI’s “New Cannabis Attitude and Usage Study,” surveying legal adult cannabis users to understand their attitudes and motivations, and what further legalization might mean in the marketplace. Among the key findings:

  • Cannabis consumers defy stereotypes.
  • Cannabis products replace purchases of over-the-counter medications.
  • But snack-food manufacturers stand to benefit as legalization spreads.

To read IRI’s press release announcing the cannabis study’s results, click here.

Related: IRI and MFour Partner To Launch IRI OnSights™

Topics: consumer survey, mobile market research, market research panel, IRI Partnership

What Does Digital Advertising Need Most? Effectiveness Metrics from a Mobile Consumer Panel

Posted by MFour on Feb 28, 2019 8:00:00 AM

Digital is dominating the advertising industry, and ad effectiveness measurement with an all-mobile consumer panel gathered around a mobile market research app is the necessary solution for understanding how well $129 billion in projected 2019 spending is performing as brands try to influence smartphone-centric consumers.

eMarketer predicts 2019 will be the milestone year in which U.S. advertisers for the first time spend more on digital ads ($129 billion) than on television, radio and all other “traditional” advertising channels combined ($109 billion) as they seek to exert influence all along the purchase path. Mobile digital ads will account for $87 billion – 67% of all digital spending, and 36% of all ad-spend dollars across all channels.

It goes without saying that documenting the effectiveness of all those digital advertising dollars is a crucial job for market research. But that task has been deeply problematic, with standard  measurement methods unable to collect reliable metrics in the digital realm. With that in mind, MFour recently announced a comprehensive solution driven by feedback from validated digital ad recipients from the 2.5 million member, all-mobile U.S. consumer panel that uses the Surveys On The Go® mobile market research app.

As Chris St. Hilaire, MFour’s co-founder and CEO has framed it, “until now, digital ad measurement has been directional at best, focused on desktops rather than smartphones despite consumers' massive shift to mobile. Brands are shifting ad spend to mobile because they know that’s where consumers are. Digital Brand Studies don't just guess. They provide accurate, validated metrics. Measuring ad effectiveness doesn’t have to be like reading tea leaves any more.”

For more on Digital Brand Studies, just click here.

 

Topics: mobile market research, digital advertising, mobile consumer panel, Digital Brand Studies, market research panel

5 Key Questions To Ask Consumer Panel Vendors

Posted by MFour on Feb 26, 2019 8:00:00 AM

Here are five intensely important questions to ask when you’re deciding how to do consumer market research in today’s always-on data environment.

  • How can I get data I can trust, from a consumer panel that’s worth trusting?
  • Given the drastic changes in consumers’ purchase paths, how can I identify all the key touchpoints to collect market research data when and where it truly matters?
  • When confronted with Big Data and its sources, how can I tell what’s gold from what’s fool’s gold?
  • How can I get research projects done fast enough to satisfy my clients or stakeholders?
  • With so many providers launching so many products, how can I tell which ones really work?

Now here are five simple responses that will point you toward the answers. 

Related: Market Research for Consumer Products

Trusting the consumer panel/trusting the data:

  • Just ask specific questions about where your data is coming from. If the answer is not clear and simple, look elsewhere. Recruiting a quality, representative market research panel is widely seen as a Herculean task. MFour’s solution is simple: people love their phones. They especially love using apps on their phones. Partner with a mobile market research provider who has a great market research app that attracts a quality, reliable engaged first-party all-mobile consumer panel.  MFour’s app, Surveys On The Go® (SOTG) has been proving its mettle since 2011 and has attracted more than 2.5 million U.S. users. They’ve validated their engagement by giving SOTG a 4.5-star rating on both the Apple and Google app-download sites.

Staying in touch with changing consumer purchase paths:

  • It’s a long and winding road that leads consumers to your door, and today that door is often a retail website or a brand’s app instead of, or in addition to, the door to a physical store. The common denominator is the smartphone, which consumers use to go online and keep in their hands, pockets or handbags when they’re offline.

The online/offline distinction is becoming less clear because there’s so much toggling back and forth, as in checking prices on the web while shopping in a brick-and-mortar store. You need to find research tools and products that can take you everywhere there’s relevant, insights-rich data. It may be online or offline, it may be observational or survey-based, it may be event-triggered or not specific to a moment or a place. But it has to be always on, and it has to take you everywhere your consumers are going along the new purchase paths their smartphones are carving for them.

Big Data Tsunami

  • Just stick to the fundamentals: who are the actual consumers who are providing the data, when did they provide it, and where were they in online or offline space when they generated it? Big Data will confuse you if you don’t have a clear and simple understanding of its sources. It becomes an extremely useful tool for consumer segmentation and other research purposes if you do have the clear and simple understanding of your data sources. Who, exactly , is generating the data you’re observing or actively eliciting, and how have they been recruited?

Fast and faster research

  • It comes down to whether you can connect quickly with known consumers, and how quickly they respond. Waiting for panel aggregators to fill your quotas is slow and leaves a lot to chance. Gathering a first-party consumer panel around a market research app gives you a unified, consistent, always-on data source that’s both validated and fast. You can expect MFour’s SOTG app-users to give you response rates of 25% within one hour and 50% within 24 hours.

Wading through the research product glut

  • Keep it simple. If the consumer panel is reliably representative and quick to respond, the under-the-hood technology and methodology that wins their participation and obtains their data is by definition working smoothly and effectively. If you can get everything you need from a single source – the consumers, the technology, versatile use cases and in-house project support steeped in market research know-how from survey design, programming and fielding through analysis and data reporting, then so much the better.

If one-stop shopping sounds appealing, just scroll to the menu at the top of this page and dive in for details on how mobile app research will drive success with your current projects.

 

 

 

Topics: mobile market research, surveys on the go, in-app Mobile surveys, mobile app research, consumer data

Surveys On The Go® Awarded CNET's "Best Apps to Earn Cash in 2019"

Posted by MFour on Jan 8, 2019 9:43:25 AM

Surveys On The Go®, MFour’s trail-blazing mobile research app, continues to ride high with consumers and tech tastemakers alike, eight years after its launch. SOTG’s latest distinction is making CNET Magazine/Download.com's list of the “8 best moneymaking apps to earn cash in 2019.”

Tech writer Joshua Rotter made the picks, so kudos to him for recognizing excellence. We also appreciate his emphasis on data privacy. Rotter noted that in addition to providing an engaging way to earn money while being heard by Fortune 1000 companies as they hone the creation, refinement and marketing of products and services, SOTG users enjoy a guarantee to protect and never sell their Personal Identifying Information (PII).

In fact, a key distinction of SOTG versus many other sources of consumer data is an assurance that app-users’ identities and demographic information will be protected and used only in aggregated form, combined with survey answers from all other participants in a given survey.

We should note that while individual experts’ opinions of Surveys On The Go® carry weight, the aggregated opinions of multitudes of app users count the most. On that score, SOTG has long been the top mobile survey app, with average all-time ratings of 4.6 stars out of 5 on Google Play and 4.5 at the Apple iOS App Store. 

Why does it matter? The quality of the data depends on the quality of the survey experience and the size of the consumer panel available to take surveys. We always work hard to give the 2.5 million U.S. consumers who have downloaded SOTG the best experience, and we’re always grateful for their participation and support. The best in market research depends on them.

Topics: mobile surveys, mobile app, mobile market research, surveys on the go, market research, mobile consumers, CNET

Spending Big on Social Media Ads? Test Them First in Targeted Consumers' Actual Social Feeds

Posted by MFour on Dec 4, 2018 6:00:00 AM

Blog Social Ad Testing 21Nov18

The good news for advertising on social media is that a massive audience gathers there. The bad news is that any given social media ad is a small raft of messaging in a limitless ocean of content. To increase your social ads’ chances of being discovered - and lifting consumers’ brand and product awareness and intent to buy - keep reading.

But first, some recent data from Pew Research Center shows how potentially rewarding social media platforms can be for advertisers.

  • 73% of U.S. adults use YouTube.
  • Among teens, YouTube use rises to 85%.
  • 68% of U.S. adults use Facebook.
  • Facebook usage is highest among ages 18-29 (81%) and women (74%).
  • 50% of U.S. adults visit Facebook at least once a day.
  • Instagram’s share of the U.S. adult audience is 35% and Twitter’s is 24%.

That’s a lot of consumers who can potentially be reached by a given ad. The challenge is to turn the potential of social media advertising into a real return on investment. Measuring the effectiveness of social media advertising has been controversial, with concerns about transparency over impressions and other key metrics. But setting aside that debate, there can be no question that brands and agencies control the creative content of their social media ads, and need to know as much as possible as soon as possible about how the ads they’re creating are likely to be viewed and acted upon by their intended social audiences.

MFour offers an advertising research product called Social Ad Testing that raises the chances of success for any social ad campaign. It’s a test that doesn’t seem like a test to the recipients you’re targeting. Instead, Social Ad Testing presents the ad as natural content in target consumers’ actual social news feeds. The test ad is consistent with all the other posts and advertisements the recipients are scrolling through in their feeds. You’re testing in the wild, so to speak - in the natural environment where your ad must flourish or fail once the campaign actually begins.

Social Ad Testing is the only method that takes your ad right into the wilds of social media. All the others do the testing in a simulated social environment. First, you’ll just observe how your test audience responds to the ad. How long was it in view? Did they click on it to activate audio? Did they share it or “like” it?

Next, you’ll step out from behind the curtain and show them the ad, so you can survey them using key qualitative questions about which creative elements work, which don’t, and how favorable they are toward the product and brand. If all signals read “go,” you launch the campaign with confidence. If the ad isn’t ready for prime time, the test will tell you not only that it needs work, but point you to the creative elements you need to improve. With that guidance, you’ll revise and retest until you know the ad is ready to give you your best shot at capturing attention and motivating consumers in the social space.

You can test an ad across different social platforms to see where you should direct your budget. Or you can test different versions, compare, and decide which is the one to use. 

The social ad space is too big and untamed to venture forth unprepared. With Social Ad Testing, you give your campaigns the best chance of breaking through.

Topics: mobile research, mobile market research, consumer insights, Social Ad Testing, advertising research, social media

In-App Mobile Market Research Reached 2,500 Millennials for in-Depth Consumer Insights

Posted by MFour on Nov 14, 2018 11:00:00 AM

Blog Millennial Women 13Nov18

Accurate consumer insights on Millennials will continue to be essential for decades. MFour Client ROTH Capital Partners (ROTH) has taken the challenge seriously, undertaking an in-depth study of 2,500 Millennial men and women in partnership with MFour.

You can check out ROTH’s announcement of its 2018-2019 Millennial Study by clicking here.

The survey encompassed 181 questions and had an average Length of Interview of more than 28 minutes, confirming respondents’ willingness to engage with longer, in-depth surveys if they’re conducted in the mobile-app environment that has become the most natural habitat for today’s consumers.

Among the study’s findings:

  • Two thirds of Millennials prefer to research significant purchases online, but 57% still prefer to carry out transactions in-store.
  • Virtual Reality shopping has become a fact, with 15% of Millennials saying they have used VR to evaluate furniture, while 16% have used “virtual mirrors” to see how they’ll actually look in cosmetics or clothes they’re considering.
  • Nike’s marketing gamble on Colin Kaepernick has paid off with Millennials – 34% said they’re more likely to purchase Nike products following the ad campaign featuring the controversial NFL quarterback, compared to 15% who said the ads made them less likely to purchase Nike goods.

Mobile studies such as the one by ROTH dispel two main myths of market research:

  • That Millennials are a generation that’s especially “hard to reach." 
  • And that mobile surveys are only effective for quick-hit surveys with short, simple questionnaires.

Increasingly, consumer insights professionals are realizing that Millennials are well in reach and can be understood in-depth if you reach out to them in the mobile-app space where they’re most comfortable.

Topics: millennials, mobile market research, consumer insights, in-app Mobile surveys, in-depth surveys, mobile myths

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

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

How To Watch Every Move Your Competitors' Customers Make

Posted by MFour on Oct 9, 2018 12:09:51 PM

Blog Competitive Intel 3Oct18 

The theme music for today’s consumer insights discussion is “Every Breath You Take” by the Police, which was the biggest hit of the year in both the U.S. and the U.K. back in 1983.

“Every move you make, every step you take, I’ll be watching you,” sang the trio’s front man, Sting. He was talking about following a love interest everywhere, to the point of obsession.

We’re talking about following your competitors’ customers everywhere, day by day, week after week and month after month, to gain the competitive intelligence that can help you turn them into your own customers.

How? Not by shadowing them step by step on foot or in a vehicle, but by tracking them remotely and round the clock with complete precision, by leveraging advanced mobile GPS location technology – and much more. Beyond the right technology, you need to track and know the right people – in this case, members of a validated, first-party, all-mobile consumer panel who have given informed consent and opted in twice to allow researchers to track their physical buying journeys in exchange for opportunities to participate in mobile location surveys and earn cash rewards.

  • Every move they make across 12.5 million U.S. retail locations is tracked and archived on MFour’s Path-2-Purchase® Platform.  
  • That includes almost every store of the nation’s top 1,000 retailer chains, amounting to about 750,000 store visits each day.
  • Each visit is archived in a Consumer Data Center you can tap into to gain context for observed journeys.
  • And every consumer who’s tracked can be surveyed at any time, to gain a clear understanding of what’s motivating his or her observed buying journeys – especially visits to the businesses you’re competing against.

Say, for example, that you’re conducting competitive intelligence research for a convenience store chain, and want to focus on Hispanic American Millennials who have incomes of $50,000 to $75,000.

First, you’ll plug in the name of the competing c-store chain(s) whose customers you’re trying to convert.

Then enter the characteristics of the people you want to track — in this case, the above-mentioned ethnicity, age, and income stratum.

The platform automatically shows daily visitation by the targeted group to each competing location, with a graphic visualization comparing it to your own visits on the same day or range of dates. You can see the nationwide competitive picture, or narrow it down to a single DMA. Among the consumer attributes and segments you can study are:

  • Brand loyalists: who regularly visits the competing c-store chain, but never comes to one of your own?
  • Brand agnostics: who’s going to multiple c-stores, marking them as consumers you can try to win over, if you can understand reasons for their c-store polygamy.
  • Frequent shoppers: who goes to c-stores every day, or nearly every day?
  • Daypart shoppers: who’s going in the morning, who at lunch time, and who on the way home from work?
  • Complete daily journeys: where were c-store shoppers coming from before making that stop? And where did they go next?

Observed location behaviors will tell you a great deal about your competitive landscape, but for the deepest insights you also need to understand the “why.” And for that, there’s no substitute for talking to the same consumers whose buying journeys you’ve been observing.  You can send them a notification of a mobile survey opportunity at any time. The ideal solution is to move from location-observation to location surveys. Respondents are detected when they enter your competitors’ stores, and receive a survey notification as soon as they exit. Response rates are typically 25% within an hour and 50% within 24 hours. The incidence rate can be as high as 100%, because you’ll always have certainty that you’re sending surveys to people who’ve are exactly where you need them to be.

  • Do your competitors’ loyalists have different motivations than your own loyalists (who you also can identify, observe and survey by using Path-2-Purchase®)?
  • Is there some pattern of attitudes, preferences and behaviors that differentiates your competitors’ customers from your own?
  • Or are they similar enough to be reachable and changeable, given the right messages or incentives?
  • What are the characteristics and motivations of brand-agnostic consumers who ping-pong between different stores? And how might they be susceptible to special offers or specially-targeted advertising? 

To sum up, there’s now a tool called Path-2-Purchase® that for the first time lets researchers combine observed location-tracking data with survey data. The data is ultra-reliable because surveys are answered by the same actual consumers whose location journeys you’ve already tracked and observed. The process gives you quality data from real, validated consumers who all take part in your research via Surveys On the Go®, the groundbreaking app that has harnessed the immense capabilities of smartphones for receiving and sending information.

This look at mobile-app location and survey research just skims the surface. For example, we haven’t mentioned how smartphones’ ability to display and transmit photos and videos can bring real-time survey data truly alive and make your reports all the more vivid and impactful. 

In competitive intelligence research, every move you make and every step you take should bring you and your decision-makers closer to the goal of prying away customers and market share from your competitors. To learn more about how Path-2-Purchase® and other mobile capabilities can bring more accuracy and intense meaning to your specific projects, just fill out the brief form below. 

 

Topics: mobile market research, path to purchase, Path-2-Purchase™ Platform, competitive intelligence

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