Whether you’re a hardened researcher or a newcomer to customer feedback planning, it never hurts to get a fresh perspective. What are the options, considerations and ways to maximise effectiveness in designing a feedback programme?
Here are 5 things well worth considering in order to ensure a successful programme:
Put yourself in your customer’s shoes
This can be difficult to do initially, but it's well worth the effort. This is because only by experiencing things from the customer’s point of view can you truly engage with your customer in a meaningful and effective way.
Think of it like this: when you go to your GP you know they are experts in their field and that your patient records are up to date, available and being used. Imagine arriving at your doctor’s desk to be asked every basic personal detail, filling in lots of forms whilst your doctor shows little interest in you. It’s not normally like that. Our GP knows our details, is expecting us and can quickly get to the important matter of our symptoms, followed by a prescription to make us better.
It's the same with our customer feedback and surveys. Don't ask for the receipt number, date of visit, loyalty card number, which site visited, inside leg measurement…this is getting the customer to do your job for you. Use the available technology and joined up thinking to show your customer you care by asking relevant questions from their point of view.
By putting yourself in the customer’s shoes you can understand their journey and how best to engage with them.
Choose the right moment in time
You will have experienced a badly timed survey or feedback prompt, popping up just as you’re in the flow; bouncing into your face like an unwelcome jack-in-a-box. Avoid this like the plague. This is a sure way to guarantee poor response rates. There’s a right moment in time and this is worth your consideration as you think through the customer journey.
So having put yourself in your customer’s shoes, think about the moments in time when they will be best positioned to provide you with feedback. Do you want to interrupt them with a pop up option (I don’t like that experience myself) or offer a simple feedback or rating option as part of their web experience? Do you want to email a survey after an event, or engage with the customer whilst at the event through an unattended interactive and on brand touch screen? Do you want to text your customer within 24 hours of receiving the service, or via a counter top tablet at the service desk?
You have options, so choose the best moment in time for your customer.
Choose the right method
Once you have understood their journey, by putting yourself in their shoes, you will recognise some key moments of truth where valuable insight could be gleaned. There’s a right time and also a right capture method…
If your experience is online then that's usually the best place to gain feedback. If your experience is physically onsite – such as a hospital, store, service centre or university - then right there is the best place to gain your feedback. If your experience is on the telephone then consider using that medium to gain feedback. It’s whilst we’re interacting with someone or something that we are thinking about that experience – so ideally utilise that very moment to gain timely feedback whilst things are fresh in the customer’s mind and the context is supportive of the feedback.
Technology now enables us to engage with our customers in so many different ways. This opens new doors and interesting ways to truly engage and make the process easy for the customer, which in return enhances data accuracy and response volumes.
Keep it short
The days of 28 question surveys, if you want honesty in the feedback, is over. But neither is one question always enough.
A small number of well designed, engaging and relevant questions can provide actionable feedback that will highlight improvements. With text analytics organisations can benefit from the true voice of the customer by asking “Is there anything else you would like to tell us today?” letting customers off-load the good, the bad and the ugly.
In other words, let the customer say what they want to say, in addition to asking a select few quantitative options. Get to the heart of their delight or concern with short relevant and engaging feedback questions.
Plan to use the feedback to do something
Organisations that ask for feedback with no plan for utilising, mining, drawing value out of the data are merely ticking a box. In our modern world this is not good enough. Your customers are intelligent and have choice – ensure they know you’re going to use the feedback.
Customer experience technology now provides alerts against service levels, complaints, things to celebrate and also interactive dashboards that deliver exactly what an organisation needs to see, when they need to see it.
Ensure your customer experience programme includes operational planning to use both the tactical information to act now, and the strategic learning to fix the bigger issues and root causes.
Put yourself in your customer's shoes, choose the right moment in time, choose the right methods, keep it short and plan to use the feedback. Have a successful customer feedback programme!
Download our free Ebook: Methods for Measuring Satisfaction & Increasing your Feedback Reach which explains some of the different channels you can use to capture feedback and shares specialist tips about how to utlise them effectively in your customer feedback programme.