A 46% Surge at Staples? It Must Be Back-to-School Season.

Posted by MFour on Aug 9, 2018 12:03:32 PM

Blog P2P Back to School 8Aug18

Yes, it’s that time of year again, when many youngsters’ hearts sink a little under the knowledge that they’ll soon be Back to School, and many a consumer insights professional’s work day becomes more pressured (one hopes after having first recharged with a nice summer vacation)MFour’s Path-2-Purchase™ Platform has been observing shifts in retail trends critical for consumer insights professionals who need an immediate understanding of shopper behavior this time of year.

  • At Walmart, nationwide store visits over the first three weekends in August were up 17% over the last three weekends in July.
  • Target saw a 22% jump during the same period.
  • Staples stores witnessed a whopping 46% gain in average weekend visits, coinciding with the August Back-to-School season.

Back to School is a big event for retailers and brands. The National Research Federation predicts that this year's sconsumer spending will reach $83 billion by the time school bells ring and college campuses come back to life. It’s a short window from now ‘til then, and sellers must hustle to maximize their share. Hence the pressure on the consumer insights teams they're relying on for data, analysis and guidance.

Are you up to the challenge of helping your clients or your brands’ decision-makers recognize problems and opportunities right away? Being able to make on-the-fly adjustments is crucial to succeeding in todays complex and competitive retail environment.

One very applicable quick-turnaround use case for Path-2-Purchase™ from now until school starts can help your decision-makers right-size seasonal staffing. When you can see and quantify actual surges in traffic, you can put more customer service representatives and checkout personnel in your stores to give your shoppers an experience that they’ll consider efficient, successful and relatively stress-free. They’ll love you for it – and they’ll be back when Halloween comes around.

How does it work? A key value of  Path-2-Purchase™ is the ability to instantly identify consumers as they visit a store, and push them a mobile survey while they’re still shopping, or just after they’ve left. You get your data from validated, first-party consumers, segmented not just by where and when they shop, but by detailed demographic profiles based on more than 200 data points. It beats trying to infer who people are from third-party data whose uncertain sourcing often makes it too much of a not-so-good thing. And it lets you understand your competitors’ customers and their paths to purchase, in ways that can help your brand convert the other guy’s shoppers into your own.

Because you’ll identify and survey shoppers while they’re still in a store, or just after they’ve left, you’ll get feedback while their emotions and recall are at a revealing peak. Researchers can expect a 25% response rate within an hour, and 50% within 24 hours. Identifying shopper satisfaction issues in the first week or two of Back to School shopping gives you your best shot at helping your stakeholders correct them in time to avoid alienating shoppers and taking hits to the bottom line.

You can school yourself by taking a free spin with the Path-2-Purchase™ dashboard, so just click here. And to learn more about how first-party mobile consumers engaged with in-app mobile research capabilities can meet your specific projects’ needs, just click here.

Topics: mobile research, Path-2-Purchase™ Platform, consumer insights, back to school

The Best Screener Qs Are The Ones You Don't Even Have To Ask

Posted by MFour on Jul 31, 2018 9:30:00 AM

Question Mark 2 blog 30July18 

Louis Armstrong, whose 117th birthday falls this week (Aug. 4), is one of the most recognizable and enduring personal brands in popular culture. But one of his most famous sayings seems to contradict the very concept of market research’s role in building brands.

“If you have to ask, you’ll never know,” the brilliant trumpeter (and singer of the hits “Hello, Dolly,” “When the Saints Go Marching In,” and “What a Wonderful World”) replied, when asked to define “swing,” the term for the freewheeling jazz rhythm he pioneered.

But now Satchmo’s saying is beginning to make more sense in consumer insights terms, thanks to Path-2-Purchase™ Platform. This transformative new visualization tool lets you obtain a wealth of data about a representative, first-party consumer panel, without even having to ask. The result is faster, far more precise segmentation of the people you most need to talk to, and, when you do start asking questions, a leaner, more efficient survey process.  

Path-2-Purchase™ lets you eliminate most of the screener questions that bog down your research and cost you time in filling quotas and fielding your questionnaires. Now respondents  don’t have to go away frustrated and alienated from the research process because they were screened out. That keeps  them very much alive as participants for all your future projects. Meanwhile, consumers who do qualify get right to the point because they only have to answer the truly substantive questions that focus on what you really need to know. Research becomes much faster. Engagement intensifies. Data quality attains new heights. And so does the level of assurance with which you can present your findings and recommendations to your clients or stakeholders.

Take a look and play with Path-2-Purchase™ by clicking here. You’ll get a quick understanding of its potential for segmenting, targeting, surveying, and mining historical data from the consumers you most need to know.

  • You’ll select among 2.3 million first-party validated consumers, based on their journeys across 12.5 million U.S. locations.
  • No need to ask where they’ve been and trust their recall.
  • You’ll also know them by more than 200 first-party demographic and psychographic profiling characteristics, enabling you to select validated, relevant consumers to interview without having to ask numerous screener questions.
  • When you are ready to ask, you can reach them at any time and place.
  • To acquire deep context for your survey data, simply append historical location, profile and survey data from our Consumer Knowledge Center.

So take a few moments to explore what a wonderful world it could be if you jump on board to select, track and gain unprecedented contextual understanding without even having to ask. Set up a live demo and conversation about how Path-2-Purchase™ can help you fulfill your projects’ specific needs faster and more efficiently than ever before, just by clicking here.

Meanwhile, Happy Birthday to Louis Armstrong, who is now at least half right about market research. Here’s something swinging from the man himself.













Topics: mobile surveys, market research, survey, Path-2-Purchase™ Platform, consumer insights, survey design

It's a War Out There: Consumer Insights and the Battle for QSR Pizza Market Share

Posted by MFour on Jul 27, 2018 7:00:00 AM

 Pizza Blog 26July18

From a business perspective, a key ingredient for success in the battle for market share in quick-serve pizza delivery and carryout is validated consumer insights from real pizza buyers.

The war for the pizza consumer’s wallet is extremely hard-fought, the latest evidence being Domino’s announcement that it aims to open 2,350 additional stores in the U.S. over the next ten years – a 42% increase from the 5,650 locations it already has. Now that’s an ambitious example of a business trying to increase its deliverables. Right now, however, Pizza Hut is in the lead, with 7,469 U.S. stores at the start of 2018.

Fast delivery is not the only thing QSR pizza brands must deliver. They need excellent counter service, too. Domino’s for example, realized 63% of its $26.5 billion in 2017 U.S. sales from carryout business, per its most recent annual report.

From a marketing and consumer insights perspective, Domino’s, Pizza Hut, and every other QSR pizza or fast-casual pizza chain has at least one thing in common: it’s easy to find out who’s going to each brand’s stores for carryout or dining in, and how much traffic each chain is getting, down to individual stores. You just have to know about MFour’s Path-2-Purchase™ Platform, which you can do by clicking right here.

Important consumer panel facts and mobile research capabilities include:

  • 2 million validated, demographically-profiled real consumers who have downloaded the Surveys On The Go® mobile research app.
  • Store-level accuracy with GPS location tech that tracks and validates each research participant’s store visits across 12.5 million U.S. retail and restaurant locations (including all stores of the top 1,000 retailers, with all the big pizza players represented).
  • Identify key consumer segments to understand the “who” behind those location visits – segment by age, sex, income or whatever else you need, with 250 demographic and ethnographic profiling characteristics.
  • Add the “where” of consumer behavior by observing real, first-party participants’ visits to store locations in a specific zip code, in a DMA, a state, or nationwide.
  • Understand the “when” and the “how often” by observing visit frequency (indicating who’s a brand loyalist, agnostic, or rejector), time of day, day of week, and dwell-time.
  • Crucially, get insights into the “why,” by surveying GeoValidated® consumers after they’ve left a store. Expect a 25% response rate within an hour, 50% within 24 hours.
  • Get competitive insights by identifying, tracking and surveying a rival’s customers.

There’s a lot more – for example, we can help you find and survey pizza delivery workers, too. And another Domino’s initiative, delivering to 200,000 outdoor locations nationwide, such as beaches and parks, can be observed and studied too, via custom geolocation research that captures visits to any place in the U.S. for which you know the latitude and longitude. You can set up a productive personal demo on how to find, reach out to and understand the real consumers most important to your specific research projects and objectives, just by clicking here.


Topics: geolocation, market research, Path-2-Purchase™ Platform, consumer insights, QSR, competitive insights

Amazon Prime Day Gave Bricks and Mortar Stores the Blues

Posted by MFour on Jul 19, 2018 9:28:17 AM

PTP_Claymockup-1 Amazon's fourth annual "Prime Day" was a day to forget for major bricks-and-mortar retailers, including Walmart.

How do we know? All it took was a quick glance at the store-visit data on MFour's Path-2-Purchase™ Platform. There, platform users instantly see customer journeys to all locations of more than 1,000 retailers nationwide.

The data showed that visits to Walmarts sank to 90-day lows on July 16-17 – coinciding with the 36-hour Prime Day promotion in which Amazon Prime members enjoy the biggest discounts of the year. Walmart's foot traffic for Monday, July 16, was 12% lower than its Monday average over the previous three months, excluding the busy Monday of the long Memorial Day weekend.

Whether it's Prime Day or any other day, Path-2-Purchase™ is an unprecedented tool for consumer insights professionals to understand the journeys and motivations of validated, first-party consumers. Its core functions enable researchers to target, track and survey the most relevant consumers, and to append their historical visitation data to provide deep context to any study. Validation is another core value, based on observed location journeys, unique mobile device identifiers, and precise consumer profiles.

Target: to check Prime Day's impact on bricks-and-mortar stores, we did simple targeting based on nationwide visits to a single retailer, Walmart. But Path-2-Purchase™ lets you visualize where consumers go and who they are in granular detail, segmenting by more than 250 demographic and psychographic points and by 12.5 million U.S. locations, including all outposts of the top 1,000 retailers.

Track: consumer-journey tracking options are exhaustive. For example, you can identify and track Walmart's habitual Monday visitors. Track them on the days of their Walmart visits, including where they go just before and after shopping at Walmart. Then see where they go during the same hours on all other days of the week.

Survey: identify loyal Walmart shoppers and ask them whether they used Prime Day to buy products they customarily would shop for at Walmart. Or identify consumers who have the Amazon app for specific insights into their Prime Day spending and experiences. 

Append: after taking a snapshot of your relevant consumers' latest actions and attitudes, contextualize by accessing data from a Consumer Knowledge Center that shows where the same research participants have gone in the past. 

Validate: No need to ask respondents whether they've shopped at a Walmart in the past 90 days, where, and how often. You already know all of that.

Like Amazon, Path-2-Purchase™ is a platform full of endless possibilities. It's comprehensive, convenient, and efficient. To access the platform for a self-guided demo, just click here. And to set up a live, one-on-one discussion about how Path-2-Purchase™ and MFour's other solutions can fill your projects' specific needs, just click here.





Topics: market research, Path-2-Purchase™ Platform, consumer insights, retail

How Did 7-Eleven Boost Traffic 53% in One Day?

Posted by MFour on Jul 13, 2018 7:00:00 AM

Slurpee blog 7-Eleven 12July18 

Serve free Slurpees, get 53% more customers.

That was the sweet deal for 7-Eleven in its annual July 11 Slurpee giveaway, in honor of July 11 being 7-11. We were able to quickly quantify this huge spike in nationwide store traffic because we track U.S. consumers’ shopping journeys 24-7 on our Path-2-Purchase™ Platform.

Platform users get location-visit data that’s updated daily, encompassing visits to 12.5 million commercially relevant locations nationwide, including all outlets of the top 1,000 U.S. retailers.

And here’s why it matters, using the 7-Eleven Day giveaway as an example.

  • What will happen in the days and weeks following 7-Eleven customers’ big Slurpee binge? Will the surge in traffic be nice and sticky, or will it melt away like a cup of ice in the summer heat? Answers are at your fingertips, because Path-2-Purchase™ is always on, providing an inexhaustible fountain of validated consumer-journey intelligence for everyone.
  • Did 7-Eleven’s free Slurpees peel away customers who typically go to a different store for cold drinks, gasoline, and other C-store sundries? You can identify other brands’ frequent visitors and see whether they defected to 7-Eleven on 7-11 to get that free refreshment. And you can keep tracking them as time goes on, to see whether it was a one-day stand, or whether they are now going steady with 7-Eleven.
  • What kinds of product giveaways would work for a different C-Store or for a Quick-Serve Restaurant? With Path-2-Purchase™ you can identify and target consumers who visited 7-Eleven on free Slurpee day, and send them a survey. Ask what they thought of 7-Eleven’s giveaway, and what kinds of items they’d go out of their way to get for free at another chain’s stores. 
  • Do the same kind of research around any retailer or brand’s major promotion, whether it’s daylong, weeklong, or monthlong.
You’re invited to have your own hands-on experience with Path-2-Purchase™ Platform by jumping onto its dashboard and playing with visitation data for some of the leading retailers, while applying some of the 250 demographic and psychographic consumer-profile data points you'll use to segment the most relevant consumers. It’s on the house, so just click here.


Topics: mobile research, mobile surveys, mobile targeting, Path-2-Purchase™ Platform, retail

Free Trial: Combine First-Party Observed Behavior With Surveys at 12.5 Million U.S. Locations

Posted by MFour on Jun 5, 2018 4:15:15 PM

P2P Dashboard

Marketing and consumer insights professionals who've visited the the MFour blog have seen lots of posts about the new Path-2-Purchase™ Platform. Now you can experience it for yourself. We've debuted a free, interactive Path-2-Purchase™ dashboard, and as you play with it, you'll see it's a dramatic step forward for the art of targeting and tracking consumers across their buying journeys. 

Read the full details here. Or to jump right into your free trial, just click here.

The Path-2-Purchase™ dashboard is a highlight of a new MFour.com website that’s been fully revamped and redesigned for easy access to clear, detailed, transparent content that lays out the state-of-the-art in mobile market research, including MFour's noted location-based survey capabilities powered by proprietary GeoIntensity® and GeoNotification® technologies. Please spend a few minutes strolling around the site, which we believe you'll find to be the largest, most useful and substance-filled repository of information about mobile market research and its best-practices you've ever encountered.



Topics: mobile targeting, mobile market research, market research, Path-2-Purchase™ Platform, consumer insights

8 Questions To Ask a Mobile Research Provider

Posted by MFour on May 8, 2018 9:30:00 AM

Blog Pic Mobile Questions 8May18

Are you ready to join the wave of consumer insights professionals who are diving deep into mobile research? If the answer is yes, then congratulations on making that transformative decision.

But taking the dive is just the first step. No methodology will work if the execution is poor. With that in mind, here are eight key questions any savvy mobile-insights buyer should ask. And be sure not to settle for anything less than answers that are authoritative, assured and completely specific to the kinds of projects you need to accomplish. 

  • Is the mobile research you're selling the same as your online research, only more portable?
  • What specific research capabilities does mobile bring to the table?  
  • Where's the sample coming from?
  • What level of representation and responsiveness can I expect? 
  • Is it true that mobile surveys need to be kept extremely short? 
  • I've heard the way to go is "mobile optimized." What exactly does that mean? And is that really true?
  • There's lots of talk in the insights industry about how important it is to give survey-takers a quality experience. How does your mobile system accomplish that?
  • Can you give me some validation about response rates and respondents' satisfaction with your mobile surveys?

You can get the fast, authoritative answers you need to these questions and more by setting up a one-on-one demo that will focus on meeting your projects' specific needs, and how they align with mobile research capabilities powered by proprietary technologies such as GeoIntensity® and GeoNotification®, which enable state-of-the art location-based surveys.

We'll talk about tailoring solutions to your needs, whether it's a custom-research project where MFour provides everything from design and programming through analysis, or taking advantage of the fast insights you can get from a proprietary, mobile-only automated research solution such as Path-2-Purchase™ Platform and  MFourDIY®. Just get in touch by clicking here.

Topics: mobile insights, mobile research, mobile surveys, mobile technology, mobile market research, staff, Path-2-Purchase™ Platform

How To Master Space & Time with Mobile Path 2 Purchase™

Posted by MFour on May 2, 2018 9:30:00 AM


The new Path 2 Purchase™ Platform  powers unprecedented consumer insights opportunities by giving researchers new ways to visualize observed behavioral data and enrich it with validated, first-party survey data.

The key that opens the door is continuous tracking of mobile consumers’ journeys through space & time.

  • By “space” we mean 12.5 million U.S. locations, including all stores of the top 1,000 retailers.
  • By “time” we mean always and continuously, because Path 2 Purchase™ never sleeps.
  • Whose movements are being tracked? Members of the nation’s largest all-mobile panel.
  • Why are they special? They form a uniquely engaged, first-party research audience who accurately represent the entire population of U.S. smartphone users.

More than 2 million consumers have downloaded Surveys On The Go®, the proprietary consumer research app that powers Path 2 Purchase™ and  other MFour offerings, including MFourDIY®. The panel grows by about 2,000 new arrivals each day, strictly by word of mouth.

Another fact worth knowing: churn for the average online panel is nearly ten times greater than turnover among Surveys On The Go® users.

Here’s more about how Path 2 Purchase™ works, and what you'll be able to accomplish: 

  • Surveys On The Go® users agree to turn on their devices’ location function, knowing they’ll receive opportunities to take location-based surveys and enjoy reliable cash rewards.
  • Tracking their journeys through retail space, coupled with validated demographic and ethnographic profiling, creates unique targeting possibilities.
  • Path 2 Purchase™ users get access to a dashboard that enables them to choose among more than 200 demographic and ethnographic criteria.
  • You select which consumers to track, and which ones to survey, using special GeoNotification® alerts, to learn the “why” behind the “where” of their day-in, day-out journeys.
  • The data you’ll see as you play with different time/place/profile combinations on the Path 2 Purchase™ dashboard is pulled instantly from an exhaustive Consumer Knowledge Center, where all the location data coming from all those phones is continually stored, sorted, and updated by the minute.
  • As you view each combination of space, time and profile, consumer segments you hadn’t even considered might well jump out at you and point the way to surprising new research possibilities.
  • For example, who has been to a Walmart four times over the past month? Who are the Walmart-rejecters who never go – and do they shop at Target instead?
  • Does a certain profile group prefer shopping on weekday evenings, or is it more likely to go to a Walmart or Target during weekends?
  • Path 2 Purchase™ lets you identify them, then go a step further by surveying them about why they do what they do, with an incidence rate of 100%, because you’re only targeting the exact validated consumers you need to talk to.

To summarize, this is right-place, right-time location research on steroids, enabling you to be absolutely certain of consumers’ paths through space & time, then reach out to them at the optimal place and time: when they’re currently in a store, or just after they’ve left. It’s the ideal workaround to eliminate recall bias. It’s the way to exercise your research mastery.

To schedule a Path 2 Purchase™ demo and learn more about how it will help you capture the specific insights you need, just click here.

Topics: location based survey, market research, Path-2-Purchase™ Platform, consumer insights

Webinar On-Demand: Learn New Social Ad-Testing & Measurement Methods That Really Work

Posted by MFour on May 1, 2018 9:30:00 AM


Will your brand’s social media ads stand a chance when the consumers you need to reach are glued to cute-puppy pictures and Taylor Swift videos?

Watch “Ad Measurement, Attribution and Lift,” the latest installment in MFour’s Expert Event Webinar Series, and you’ll learn how to answer that key consumer insights question with a definite “Yes.”

It’s a brisk, 25-minute look at the most advanced advertising research capabilities, as Vardan Kirakosyan, MFour’s Vice President of Research Solutions, and Senior Research Consultant  Allyson Wehn walk you through new ways to test and measure your ads by first identifying the real consumers you need to study, and then seeing how they respond when they receive the ads in their actual social media news feeds.

You’ll come away with these important insights:

  • Why third-party profiling data doesn’t work and needs to be replaced to avoid substituting inferences for actual consumer realities.
  • How behavioral location data first validates, then puts you in touch with, the real consumers whose observed interactions and survey feedback will help you avoid creative mistakes and maximize appeal and lift.
  • How to inject your ads into these validated consumer groups’ actual social news feeds, to test whether they really are capable of commanding their attention and driving awareness and intent to buy.

“With the tools we have available, advertisers and researchers can become comfortable with change,” Kirakosyan sums up. This webinar is your introduction to those tools. To watch it now, just click here.

Topics: Path-2-Purchase™ Platform, consumer insights, Social Ad Testing, advertising research, Vardan Kirakosyan, Expert Event Webinar Series

Whose Path to Purchase is it, Anyway?

Posted by MFour on Apr 26, 2018 9:00:00 AM

Dashboard Blog 3Apr18

The answer is that, until now, reliable consumer insights obtained by identifying real people’s actual, validated buying journeys have been out of reach.

The new solution, Path 2 Purchase™ Platform, gives clients a panoramic window on real consumers’ journeys along their paths to purchase, both historically and in real time. The key is a first-party cohort of consumers who’ve downloaded an advanced survey and data-tracking app and can be observed as they move among locations relative to your research. And, thank to proprietary GeoNotification® technology, you can approach them with a survey at times and places of your choosing.

Path 2 Purchase™ gives you easy, one-stop fulfillment of all fundamental requirements for accurate, validated consumer data. Among them are:

Representativeness: Reach that reliably includes groups that are hard to access with online surveys. There’s strong representation of Hispanic consumers (20%), African Americans (14%) and Millennials/Gen Z, including ages 18-34 (66%).

Quality Experience: The consumers  you’ll reach are gathered around and engaged by Surveys On The Go®, the highest-rated consumer research app. It earns glowing reviews and a 4.5 stars out of 5 rating on the Apple iOS and Google Play stores that reflects some 100,000 individual ratings. There’s no better indicator of the kind of smooth, rewarding panelist experience that’s at the heart of obtaining accurate, trustworthy data from representative respondents.

Right Research Environment: Apps are the mobile environment of choice, accounting for 92% of the time U.S. consumers spend with their smartphones. Meet them where they want to be met, with an excellent app experience that secures the engagement and panel stability needed for trustworthy consumer insights.

For a one-on-one demo to learn how Path 2 Purchase™ and its first-party consumers can power your specific research needs,  just get in touch by clicking here.

Topics: mobile insights, mobile, Path-2-Purchase™ Platform, consumer insights

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