Having a look at 1Q.com – a mobile-based survey service

iq.comLast week I had was invited to have a play with the 1Q.com system, an innovative and new alternative for market researchers and marketers.

1Q.com is a panel, currently with a North American focus, that operates via consumer’s phones. Like a growing number of new survey and micro-survey options the 1Q.com platform is very DIY. You can log in, specify the sample, the questions you want to ask, pay with a credit card and launch a survey, all within a few minutes. The system also allows geo targeting.

  1. One feature of the platform is that it pushes clients, strongly, to use very short surveys in two ways:
    1. The pricing model is per question, per participant. So, 1 question to 1000 people costs the same 2 questions to 500 people. This is likely to make people think hard about how many questions they need.
  2. Further questions can be asked in the future to people who take part in surveys, via the DIY platform – this can be done in a way that creates a virtual panel of your own.

Market Research And Marketers?
For a few years now I have been predicting that marketing and market research will become more entangled, and 1Q.com is an example of what I have been talking about. Unlike many of the well-known online access panels, 1Q.com is not a market research panel. It is a platform that can be used for marketing, sales, advocacy and market research. The people/organisations using the platform determine what sort of engagement they will be creating. For their part 1Q.com provide a platform and a double-opt-in panel.

This situation highlights one of the curiosities of current MR ethics. If a system is set up for market research use, it can’t (readily) be used for marketing or sales. But if a system is set up as a marketing platform, it can be used for market research.

An Experiment With The Platform
As part of being shown the platform I took the chance to ask a question, or rather to ask two questions. Although I should stress that the point of this post is to talk about the 1Q.com platform, not the experiment – I thought it would be interesting to share some details about the data collected.

The first question was “Which of the following had people used in the last 24 hours?”

  1. Facebook
  2. Snapchat
  3. Twitter
  4. WhatsApp
  5. None of these

The second question asked for an open-ended response to “What is the best aspect of social media to you?

In our experiment we collected 500 responses in about 23 minutes. So, what did the results tell us? Since I did not structure or filter the sample, I did not try to project the US from these results. I decided to look at age/gender differences. The median age of the sample was 44 years, so I created four groups: Male under 40 years, Female under 40 years, Male 40+, Female 40+.

Although a line chart is not strictly correct for this type of data (since the X-axis represents a nominal variable and there is not a linear connection between items), it does highlight some interesting patterns in the data, as you can see below (click on it to see a larger version):

Line chart

In terms of Facebook, there are two clear patterns:

  1. Three of the gender/age groups claimed their Facebook usage was more than the other platforms tested.
  2. There is a difference between females and males in terms of claimed, recent Facebook usage. Within this sample, Facebook usage approached 90% for both the female groups.

In terms of Snapchat, we see a clear split by age. The under 40s were much more likely to say they had used Snapchat in the last 24 hours – with young males being the most likely to say they were using Snapchat.

For anybody interested in the numbers, rather than the picture, the table is below (click on it to get a larger version):


And The Open-Ended Responses?
Well, below there is a word cloud (click on it for a larger versions) for the whole data set, answering the question “What is the best aspect of social media to you?”

Word cloud

But, it would be more interesting to process the text further, perhaps using the same four groupings. If anybody would like to conduct this analysis just let me know.

Caveats And Thoughts
Whilst I was impressed with the ease of use of 1Q.com, the way panel members can be re-contacted (which means I could, in some ways, treat them as my panel) and the speed of data collection; the system is relatively new, which results, currently, in fewer survey options and fewer analysis options than I am used to.

The panel is organised via phone (smart and regular), so users would need to take this account in designing research.

Given that this platform is not focused on market research (being equally suitable for marketing, sales, advocacy etc) I suspect this service will find it easier to grow than a product that is aimed solely at market research.

Was This Blog Sponsored?
No, this blog was not sponsored (but after the demo I was gifted some survey credits).

A New Service From NewMR
At NewMR we get lots of requests to review products, which we normally have to turn down because of time and resources. However, we are planning to launch a new service, which would devote an hour to reviewing a new product or service in return for a small fee.

If you would like to demonstrate a product to us, to discuss its relative merits, leading to a blog post, we are happy to do so for fee of US $250 – which is about what we think it will cost us in time, writing, posting etc. However, if we find we do not like the product, we won’t blog about it and we won’t charge the fee. So, if you’d like an hour of our time, get in touch.