Welcome to uSamp’s bi-weekly link dump: A compilation of all things trending in Market Research, Mobile, Social Media, Gamification and more. We hope you’ll find this aggregation as informative and entertaining as we do. Let us know if there are items that you’d like to see included in the next link dump!
Ipsos slams Europe’s political failings for constraining growth
FRANCE — Global market research company Ipsos has slammed the on-going lacklustre political response to the Eurozone’s troubles in its full-year results.
Coping with complexity
Complex, unpredictable systems are a fact of life, says GfK’s Colin Strong. So market research needs to become more nimble-footed to help marketers adapt and achieve success.
Launch for self-service analytics tool Colabo
US — A self-service marketing analytics tool called Colabo has launched with a 30-day free trial.
What will be the next smartphone feature that will be differentiating and cool? Seeking Alpha Blog
At the intersection of the physical and virtual world lies a mobile capability called geofencing. A context aware app that reminds you to pick up your laundry as soon as you approach the drycleaners on the way home from work? Brilliant? Scary? We asked Director of Product for uSamp Mobile, Allen Vartazarian to explain the basics of the phenomenon, address privacy concerns, the trouble with battery drain, key applications and why geofencing has finally arrived in 2013.
Q: Can you explain geofencing to the layman?
A: Geofencing is a technology that provides the ability to create a virtual fence around a geographic location in the real world. Smartphones that are location-enabled can detect when someone enters or exits these fences, which can be as large as a city block or as small as a retail store.
A: In order to create a geofence, we first determine the latitude and longitude of a particular location, or set of locations. We then assign the radius of the geofences depending on the type of location. If we were to geofence a supermarket chain, for example, we might set a radius of 200 meters, but for coffee shops we would only set a radius of about 30 meters.
Once set, the location and radii of these geofences is communicated to the smartphone of those who have our mobile app installed. When and if the person then crosses into one of the fences, we record the date, time, and latitude/longitude of the event. In addition to logging this information, we can also choose to trigger a notification to the person, linking them to a survey within our app.
Q: How accurate is geofencing?
A: Geofencing is relatively (but not 100%) accurate. Though we can be very specific about defining the criteria for each geofence, there are certain technical limitations in the way that a smartphone determines your location, especially when the device is not actively being used (like when its in your purse or your pocket). Nonetheless, we are able to get a general understanding of someone’s location and can set an acceptable location accuracy threshold when attempting to understand when someone is within a geofence or not.
In a recent project, we setup geofences around a national fast food restaurant chain which triggered an alert asking if the person was dining there: over 80% of respondents said that they were at the location, with the remainder likely being at a store next door.
Stay tuned for Part II where Allen will address the applications of geofencing.
by Kevin Gaither, Vice President, Inside Sales
One of the perils of being in business in 2013 is finding the best way to reach new customers. Whether you are in sales, marketing, or in the survey business, you are constantly looking at ways to keep your core assets awake and alive in an age of overwhelming modes of communication.
As a Sales exec, I’ve come across many articles that declare cold calling dead and instead, promote a new software, technique, training program or social selling method that has replaced the human connection. As somebody who’s been practicing for almost 20 years, I wanted to dig deeper into the argument, and test the hypothesis of whether a “cold call” has indeed become irrelevant.
I’m fortunate to work for a consumer and business insights company that has access to over 12 million qualified panelists worldwide. So I thought that this would be a great question to pose to uSamp’s B2B Panel.
The goal was to survey 100 respondents to find out about their perceptions of cold calling. Instead of asking the Yes/No question right out of the gate, I asked respondents to self-identify as either a sales or business development professional, provide their own definition of a cold call and if they felt that their definition of a cold call was dead, and whether or not they agreed with my definition:
If a Cold Call is defined as a phone call where the person didn’t fill out a lead form, didn’t download your content, doesn’t know you, is not a referral and is not expecting your call, IS COLD CALLING DEAD?
In light of all the rhetoric out there, the results might be surprising:
87% of respondents felt that their definition of a cold call was “not dead”:
and 82% of respondents felt that my definition of a cold call was “not dead”:
I also posed this question on several LinkedIn Groups and Twitter to add a qualitative flavor to my research. Paul Castain of The Sales Playbook wrote:
“I don’t think it’s dead . . . I think it’s lonely and in need of other kinds of ‘touches’ to keep it company.”
And Trish Bertuzzi of The Bridge Group wrote:
“Apparently cold calling is alive and well and AMEN to that! BUT it is the cold that is dead not the calling.”
So what we’re left with is that, while cold calling is “alive and well,” there’s more to it than that for a cold call to be effective with today’s savvy buyers. Armed with FACTS and not self-serving opinions, I was able to crystalize the focus of my team and change strategies based on the level of the decision maker.
Bottom line: This is just one example of how a business panel can be useful for professionals. This is bigger than the simple question of whether cold calling is dead. This is about gaining better business insights, improving productivity, and testing and justifying methodology with FACTS. Why businesses should start employing research to examine daily practices –and improve upon them, making for a better work environment all around. Market Research is not just for industry professionals but spans to any individual role within a growing company – helping each team function more intelligently and ultimately, improving and refining their skill set to make them more successful.
What do you think? What business questions do you want answered?
Kevin is a passionate and recognized Inside Sales Expert & Leader with an 18+ year track record of growing early-stage and multi-million dollar businesses. Find him on LinkedIn and follow him on Twitter.
Where consumerism leads, brands follow, and where brands go, so marketing research goes. – Ben Leet
Catch them if you can. Consumers are notoriously hard to read, which is why most research spend goes toward cracking the code. Up until now, the focus has been heavily weighted toward consumers in developed countries – after all, they are the first target of most manufacturers. Reaching the consumers in developing countries has been more of a challenge, and researchers have continued to rely heavily on face-to-face to get proper representation. Until today.
In an article for MRA’s Alert! Magazine, uSamp’s Ben Leet expounds on why mobile will be the tipping point. With the high penetration of smart phones in countries like India coupled with new technologies like geofencing, there is a new opportunity for researchers to bypass online methodologies and go straight to data collection via mobile. As Leet describes, “It’s almost a self-fulfilling prophecy; with increased consumerism comes an increase in smart phone penetration, and with it, the ability for researchers to reach new audiences.”
Leet goes on to highlight trends he believe will emerge in the next 12 to 18 months:
- Mobile as a multiple methodology – app-based and mobile Web unite!
- More research spend devoted to emerging countries – propelled by end clients pushing for more insight into this untapped resource
His article begs the question: Should researchers skip online sampling methodologies and go straight to smartphone in emerging countries?
In 2013, consumers have become primary drivers of content, of product and of brand. Able to upload user-generated video to YouTube and broadcast affinities to Twitter fans, consumers have overturned the traditional model where a business builds a product in silo and offers it up to consumers. Sound archaic?
Recognizing this new, “empowered consumer,” many brands have turned to value co-creation or crowdsourcing. By involving the consumer in the creative process the brand temporarily suspends authority, and collaborates with the consumer in an effort to co-create the product. In this collaborative process, value is driven by the people instead of appropriated by businesses.
In the market research industry, value co-creation has been facilitated through survey research. IHUT (In Home Usage Testing) and diary studies are just a few examples that enable researchers to see through a consumer’s eyes. Yet the industry still has a long way to go in order to truly leverage the value of co-creation. To get there, we need to reach consumers whenever, wherever, while respecting their privacy. We want that front-of-mind, in-the-moment view of their experiences at a sensory level.
With an estimated 219.4 million viewers, the London Olympics were the most-watched television event in U.S. History. In its broadcast of the event, NBCUniversal bet on a triple strategy of live Web streaming, live cable coverage, and tape-delay broadcast—an approach that would challenge old assumptions about when, where, and how audiences are engaged.
As a key participant in NBCUniversal’s Billion Dollar Olympics Lab research initiative, uSamp applied its consumer insights platform, to track consumers’ real-time reactions, sentiment and behavior during the Games.
Before the 2012 Olympics, broadcasters had assumed that a smaller number of viewers would watch primetime Olympic coverage if they knew the results before airing. Survey results by uSamp revealed the opposite to be true. uSamp suggested that the multiple platform strategy made it more likely that people would watch primetime coverage—not less. NBC Olympics Digital set records with engagement time, live video streams and page views, while NBCOlympics.com, its mobile site and apps, delivered unparalleled engagement, traffic and consumption.
The lessons of the 2012 Olympics illustrate how the convergence of mobile, online, and broadcast platforms is shaping behavior as consumers interact with multiple touchpoints.
What can broadcasters/marketers/consumer tech companies take away from this scenario? And how will it change in 2013?
For the full case study, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
I believe that competition is at the core of any successful tech company; pioneers lay the groundwork, new entrants build on top of that groundwork, and all parties become more fiercely committed to solving problems. Take search engines for example. Yahoo! pioneered a hugely popular early search engine for the web. Its limitation was in how quickly its database of human-powered results could keep up with the rapidly expanding web. Google saw a problem and created a better solution.
I was recently asked by Bob Lederer of the Research Business Daily Report about my thoughts on how Google Consumer Surveys (GCS) has impacted the Market Research industry. I’ll reiterate what I wrote in the first product review of GCS: “GCS’ move into the Market Research industry brings good visibility to on-demand SaaS insights.” I truly believe that competition propels innovation and everyone wins.
by Jacob Tucker, Research Analyst, uSamp
Over the past few decades, bulky desktops have been swapped out for sleek tablets, Walkmans (remember those?) discarded for iPods, and news consolidated into microblogs. In this age of continuous innovation, new technology loses its shelf life quickly. In the Market Research space alone, the methods for gathering insights have gone from a clipboard to a smartphone.
Research professionals, in the advent of big data, have found the need to dig deeper into the psyche of respondents, to see things through their vantage point, and to capture their behavioral experiences (in real-time). While this may sound like a tall order, the availability of the mobile platform puts these previously unattainable insights within reach. Read the rest of this entry »
by Matt Dusig, Co-founder & CEO
Every once in a while, I like to rock the boat. With this blog title, it seems I’ve just predicted the demise of one of the core functions of sample delivery and it’s not only a challenge to the MR industry, but to uSamp as well. This doesn’t mean we’ll stop recruiting panelists into surveys using our email sampling systems — that would mean cutting off the lifeline of the millions of panelists that come through our systems every month. But, having experienced many technological changes in my life, I have become more adept at recognizing the decline of traditional methodologies. And in this case, the next casualty of panelist recruitment and engagement will be email delivery.
Technology eclipsing itself is nothing new. Look at the terrestrial radio industry and the constant decline of listeners and advertising revenue to online and satellite streams. Over-the-air broadcast radio still works and millions still use it, but it’s on the decline and the industry is undoubtedly changing forever.
Market researchers may not being dealing with the loss of radio listeners, but they can certainly learn a lesson from their peers in the music business. The writing is on the wall: Over time, email-based sampling and recruitment will diminish in value.
When I started in sampling in 2000, email response rates were high and email marketing was a valuable way to drive web traffic for lead generation and monetization. But today, just like radio, response rates for email continue to decline.
So what’s next?
by Ben Leet, Sales Director, uSamp
I recently attended the Esomar 3D conference in Amsterdam and, unsurprisingly, much of the content focused on emerging technologies and techniques such as social media monitoring and of course, mobile devices. The content was wide-ranging, diverse, and thought provoking. I came away with one very clear message – the MR industry was about to experience imminent upheaval.
My philosophy behind this is very simple – there will come a point in the near future where our mobile devices (note: they are not just phones any more!) know more about our habits than we do, as they morph into our brain’s external hard drive. Since market research is all about delving into people’s brains, it seems only fitting to delve into mobile devices in order to more accurate access this data that we crave as an industry.
My phone already knows a lot about me; it knows which flights I have taken in the last year; it knows which shops I have recently visited; it knows where I ate dinner last night. And most of all, it knows my Facebook profile and my Twitter handle; hundreds of valuable nuggets of information, a goldmine of data waiting to tell a story about me, my friends, family, likes, dislikes, media consumption, the list goes on. And this is the tip of the iceberg when I think about how much more intelligent and familiar it will become in just a few short years.