Research in the mobile mindset: Exploring the unexplored in the mobile research space

Anouk Willems, Annelies Verhaeghe and Elias Veris
InSites Consulting, Belgium

Introduction

2012 finally seems to be the year of mobile. Smartphone penetration booms, mobile marketing budgets grow exponentially, and online sources like Mashable report that in the United States alone, the app economy has created about half a million jobs (Mashable, 2012) in only five years' time. In the slipstream of this, the market research industry has a close eye on the ball. Both on the technology and the methodology side, we see that our research toolbox is mobile enabled. There have never been more congresses and research events that focus on the mobile dimension. However, while it is a fact that mobile is seeing its breakthrough in our industry, we see that most of the current research efforts are based on either mobile surveying as a tool (see, among others, Luck, 2011) or mobile ethnography (see, among others, Atkinson and Conry, 2011). While in essence there are great projects being conducted by researchers all over the world, we miss a couple of dimensions in the discussion. These are:

  1. The benefits of mobile surveying, beyond the tool;
  2. The use of mobile in Market Research Online Communities (MROCs);
  3. Mobile as a topic of research.