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Getting Closer to the Customer Journey: Five Lessons from the Front Lines of Mobile Research

Gaining greater clarity on how customers navigate decisions, interact with products/services, and engage with marketing initiatives on their journey can provide the keys to optimizing the customer experience. It allows us to unpack the decision-making process, drive loyalty and acquisition, better understand key touchpoints, highlight pain points, and/or spark new ideas for innovation.

Mobile devices afford us a unique and powerful opportunity to achieve this more holistic view of the customer journey. But as with anything, there are keys to ensuring you get the most out of your use of mobile tools. While it’s easy to assume that mobile will inherently provide a more intimate view of your customers and their experiences, we know from years of experience that there are some best practices to keep in mind.

Here are Five Tips for Getting Closer to the Customer Journey:

  • Bring customers to life.
    Photos and videos are a must. Mobile offers greater visibility into what customers care about and what motivates their choices. As such, video testimonials and images from the customer perspective are essential to attaining  powerful insights.
  • Address pointed and/or tactical hypotheses.
    Mobile is optimal when we have a focus on specific elements of a customer experience or journey. Be clear and precise in your mission for mobile — is it about how customers shop an aisle at retail, use a product/service at home, perform activities on the go, interact with different touchpoints, etc. Clarity is key.
  • Enhance what you know today.
    Mobile surveys provide a lens through which we can better understand what customers experience, as things naturally occur. This gets beyond traditional online surveys where we rely on recall and accurate recording of information based on memory. While this immersion is incredibly valuable, it’s essential that what we learn via mobile gets us beyond things we already know.  Outline what you know now, and structure the tasks to dive deeper.
  • Keep it short and sweet.
    With mobile, you have 5-10 minutes max for an ideal experience. If more time is necessary, you may need to do one of the following: prioritize needs, determine if mobile is truly best for the issue, or break up the work into smaller pieces. Sometimes a hybrid approach is ideal, leading to our 5th tip…
  • Integrate non-mobile approaches.
    Hybrid methods promote agility and offer different perspectives of the customer experience. Utilizing mobile in conjunction with a traditional online survey allows you to get “in the moment” insights where they are most critical (i.e., in store, while using product, etc.) while capturing more expansive details later (i.e., attitudes, brand impressions, category behaviors, psychographics, etc.). Pre or post-mobile qualitative also enhances the insights and actionability of the work.

There’s no question that mobile offers us the “inside scoop” into what’s really going on when people engage with our category, brand and touchpoints. However, it’s critical that mobile programs be designed for optimal success to maximize the investment.

Using mobile at the right time, in the right way, offers unprecedented ability to see our customers and brands “in action.” This allows us to understand what the decision journey looks like, how well messaging is working, what the pain points and delighters are, and much more. With this knowledge, we can more effectively craft strategies and allocate resources to create ideal experiences that attract and engage customers.

Ready to get closer to your customers using mobile research? Contact us to learn more.