Technivores do it with the latest gadgets, Escapists do it to get away from reality, while Tech Turtles rarely do it at all. What are they doing? They’re engaging their mobile devices to access the internet, apps, and social media.
That’s according to Unlocking Canadian Connectivity, a newly-released study commissioned by BBC.com and OMD and conducted by Ipsos Reid on mobile device usage. The study surveyed over 2,400 Canadians in a comprehensive two-phase process, revealing a significant jump in the number of Canadians that connect to the internet on their mobile devices – rising from 20% in December 2010, to 26% just two months later. Over the same two-month period, the proportion of tablets, such as the iPad, had doubled, illustrating the warp speed in which the mobile landscape is growing.
Unlocking Canadian Connectivity unearths key insights into how Canadian consumers interact with their mobile devices and respond to mobile content and advertising – valuable information for advertisers and marketers eager to connect with consumers by means of mobile technology. The core of the study classifies mobile users into six different segments, covering the full spectrum of the interactive mobile market, from those who are fueling content to those who use the tools these new technologies present very cautiously.
The two most advanced segments the study identifies are Creative Connectors and Technivores, which offer a glimpse of what future mobile device usage in Canada will most likely look like. Both groups actively browse the web on their mobile devices and are receptive to mobile advertising. Creative Connectors are content creators and influencers; they’re influential in social media and create and share online content with other users. Making up 13% of mobile internet users, Creative Connectors blog, write product reviews, and drive the prized “buzz factor” brands crave. Technivores are the heaviest mobile internet users, who fully exploit their device features and are members of multiple social networking sites, such as FourSquare. They crave the latest gadgets and their mobile device is their lifeline. What sets Technivores apart from Creative Connectors is their thirst for technology – they enjoy being the first to have the latest and greatest device. With such sophisticated levels of knowledge and activity, these two groups represent the ideal consumers that content creators and advertisers need to engage.
Usha Samuel, Vice President, Digital Ad Sales for BBC Worldwide Canada said, “Consumers today have a multitude of news and entertainment options across media platforms, forcing content creators and advertisers to push the boundaries of creativity and create interesting, eye-catching content. By identifying these six key groups of mobile users in Canada and studying online activities and behaviours, we can learn how to best serve each group’s wants, needs, and interests, whether through app creation, targeted online advertisements and offers.”
Susan Ellsworth, Vice President, Research Director, OMD said, “Our objective with this research was to uncover some key insights about consumers’ experiences, attitudes and expectations towards mobile devices, content and video consumption and social media. The study delivers learning that is clearly actionable today from a marketing perspective, which will serve to make clients’ campaigns more effective and impactful. Moreover, it provides us with critical insights into what the future holds for this rapidly developing sphere of the communication universe.”
The survey revealed that of those who visit the BBC.com website on their mobile device at least once a week, 49% are Creative Connectors and 32% are Technivores. This research identifies BBC.com visitors among the most advanced and highly engaged mobile users.
The Unlocking Canadian Connectivity study further disclosed that among those accessing the internet on their mobile device, 28% do so on their Blackberry, 20% are iPhone users, 17% own an iPod touch, 4% are tablet owners (mainly iPad), and 31% have some ‘other’ type of smartphone (LG, Samsung, Nokia, Motorola, HTC, etc.)
Usha Samuel added, “The key to capitalizing on opportunities the mobile web presents is to create relevant, captivating content, and then place that content on the right platform to reach the right consumer at the right time.”
Six Segments of Mobile Internet Usage as Defined by the Unlocking Canadian Connectivity Study:
— Creative Connectors represent 13% of mobile internet users, are influential in social media, and go beyond ‘standard’ internet activities, such as creating online content. Along with visiting different websites of interest, Creative Connectors regularly share content and/or advertisements of interest with others, subsequently creating the valuable “buzz factor” that brands crave, are open to exploring QR codes, and are most likely to make purchases on their device.
— Comprising about 17% of the total audience, Technivores are the heaviest mobile internet users and are constantly plugged into their device. Technology leaders in their respective social circles, they exploit their device features fully and belong to many social networking sites such as FourSquare.
— Suits see their device as a tool to organize their lives. Mainly professional and representing 17% of the total audience, Suits are heavy app users and are very selective about which apps they download and use. They consistently use weather, utilities and productivity apps. Suits enjoy an urban lifestyle and are comfortable adopting new technology. Half of the users within this segment own Blackberry phones.
— Mostly focused on entertainment-oriented device features and online activities, Escapists represent about 14% of users, view technology and their device as a personal tool, and access a variety of content on their phones, including news.
— Smartphone Simplifiers make up about 22% of users, and while not averse to technology, are not completely familiar with it either. Though they own advanced smartphones, they display below-average online activity and use their device for personal use only, such as searching for weather and music.
— Tech Turtles represent about 17% of the group and generally wait until a mobile device is established before purchasing the latest model. They use their phones for personal use, rarely access online content and apps on their device, and have a below-average interest in social media.