The Mobile Revolution
Whether you like it or not, the reality is we live in a mobile world. Long gone are the days when the phone was attached by a long cord that you use to have pull around the corner for a private conversation, when your friends used to have to call your house and hope that you were available, when you never knew who was calling until you picked up the phone. Now, not only are our phones in our pockets, but we also have uninterrupted access to the internet, something only dreamed of before the advent of the mobile phone in the 70's.
The revolution lives on in market research surveys and reporting. From mobile responsive survey platforms to dashboard reporting, having the ability to access your data and tools as well as interact with your colleagues in a mobile world is essential for success.
Mobile Communication is Not Just for Kids
When I say mobile, I'm not talking Snapchat or any other messaging app your preteen is into. I'm talking about a movable mobile world. In this world smartphones are common everywhere, and work is being created and consumed wherever you are, whenever you need to. Stop in your local Starbucks and professionals are working while drinking their morning latte or on a video call, using the free Wi-Fi. Salespeople no longer need to have paper files or stop at a pay phone to communicate with the office. Working from home is much easier and more common now that your mobile phone can function as your office phone. There's little reason to discuss the pros and cons of this new mobile world; it's already here and there is no turning back.
Market Research has Turned Mobile
The mobile revolution is also transforming market research. This is less about the mobile phone per se, and more about meeting people where they are. This new mobile world means that research must reach people where it’s easiest for them. As fewer of us use traditional desktops or stationary desk setups, the use of surveys that work well on mobile phones is imperative.
What it comes down to is the knowledge that time is both precious and valuable. Imagine being a respondent who has committed to the idea of spending 20 minutes on a survey, only to open the invite link on your phone and find that a lack of mobile-responsive-rendering forces you to spend a significant amount of additional time zooming in or out of each page or pushes you to abandon your attempt to finish the survey on a mobile platform. Every respondent lost through such a process only extends the amount of time required for data collection.
We have been using survey platforms that tout their mobile responsiveness for years (with varying degrees of success), but great lengths are being taken now and we’re confident this trend will continue to improve in quality and prevalence. This new world has necessitated a different approach to surveys, where we actively think about how a survey question would look on a phone. Mobile responsiveness saves time for consumers, business professionals and, in turn, can help to reduce respondent compensation costs for companies commissioning studies.
Mobile Reporting of Data is the Next Step
Following mobile surveys, the next logical step is allowing your internal customers to read and react to research through their mobile devices.
As we have written this month, static PowerPoint presentations are no longer the primary method to disseminate information. Data needs to be alive and accessible at any given moment by multiple people. So, you might think that you can just view PowerPoint reports on our mobile phone.
Have you ever tried to read a PowerPoint on your phone?
It doesn't work. It (pardon my language) sucks! PowerPoint presentations are created for computers with 14 inch or higher screens and lots of real estate to format and write comments. They are not built for a 5 or 6-inch phone screen.
This is where dashboarding becomes important.
In addition to the rich information that dashboards bring, they can also be optimized for mobile devices. The options you have on a laptop (like dynamic filtering) are accessible on your phone. You can see exactly what you want, when you want, without having to locate a file, just by logging into your dashboard and clicking on the report you want to see. Easy as that. Dashboards are not a "better than sliced bread" type of service, but given their usefulness in everyday business, their ability to be disseminated to multiple audiences, and their ease of use in a mobile world, the time is right for this solution.
Actionable Research offers a dashboard solution for all of our projects in addition to traditional PowerPoint reporting. Drop us a note or give us a call to find out how a dashboard might help your research efforts.