BBC.com and OMD Commission 'Unlocking Canadian Connectivity' Research Study Addressing Consumer Mobile Behaviour in Canada

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TORONTO, April 6, 2011 /CNW/ -- 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."

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    APPENDIX
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Six Segments of Mobile Internet Usage as Defined by the Unlocking Canadian Connectivity Study:

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    --  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 Blackberrys.
    --  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.

    About BBC Worldwide Canada
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BBC Worldwide is the main commercial arm and a wholly-owned subsidiary of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). BBC Worldwide Canada, located in Toronto, was established in 1952 and incorporated as a Canadian company in 2002. The company exists to maximize the value of the BBC's assets for the benefit of the UK license payer and invest in public service programming in return for rights. The company's activities in Canada include joint venture channels BBC Canada and BBC Kids, programme distribution, ad sales for bbc.com and the newly established digital distribution business. The company is also a minority shareholder in Canadian production company, Temple Street Productions.

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    About BBC.com
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One of the world's most respected media brands, BBC.com delivers in depth news, business, technology and lifestyle coverage to over 65 million* users across the globe. In 2011, nearly 3 million* unique users on average from across Canada have already turned to BBC.com for up-to-the-minute breaking news and compelling reporting. BBC.com set a new record in February 2011, attracting a new high of over 66 million pages views. *Source: Comscore. www.bbc.com

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    About OMD
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OMD is one of the world's foremost media communications specialists, investing billions in media through over 140 offices in over 80 countries and contributing to the success of many of the world's leading brands. OMD Canada is Canada's leading media investor, with offices in Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal.

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    About Ipsos Reid
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Ipsos Reid is Canada's market intelligence leader and the country's leading provider of public opinion research. With operations in eight cities, Ipsos Reid employs more than 300 research professionals and support staff in Canada. The company has the biggest network of telephone call centres in Canada, as well as the largest pre-recruited household and on-line panels. Ipsos Reid's Canadian marketing research and public affairs practices are staffed with seasoned research consultants with extensive industry-specific backgrounds, offering the premier suite of research vehicles in Canada--including the Ipsos Trend Report, the leading source of public opinion in the country--all of which provide clients with actionable and relevant information. Ipsos Reid is an Ipsos company, a leading global survey-based market research group. To learn more, visit www.ipsos.ca

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SOURCE BBC.com

For further information: Catherine Mirra, BBC Worldwide Americas, +1-212-705-9335, Catherine.Mirra@bbc.com, or Christine Black, BBC Worldwide Americas, +1-212-705-9435, Christine.Black@bbc.com Web Site: http://www.bbc.com

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