The one aspect of the Net Promoter ScoreSM, which can never be overstated, is that it will not fetch you any insights into your customer’s needs or behaviour so long as you treat it in isolation. And sadly, many brands are yet to understand this.
The past few years have seen a tremendous increase in brands’ sensitivity to their customers’ experiences. In order to ameliorate this, most businesses rely on NPS® or the Net Promoter Score to gauge customer experience. But the folly which costs them dearly in the long run happens to be the single most important faux-pas to avoid!
The phrase that will take you a long way in delivering a higher customer experience to your customers is “Closing the Loop”. Industry folks need not be taught what this is, because we know what it means and how much it means. But as a business owner, it is crucial to understand that feedback collection itself, even though is a good start, does not guarantee you anything which translates to customer loyalty, customer retention or even higher profits.
Here’s an example of how not closing the loop could potentially deprive your brand of a loyal customer.
My mum hasn’t changed her mobile network provider in almost a decade. She is happy with the service, the packages they have to offer, the pricing – It all kind of adds up to what she thinks is the best she can ask for.
Until one day she had to call the helpline for a certain discrepancy in the billing. You see, had it not been for the glaring error in the bill she would not even have approached them with the issue only because she has been a loyal customer for as long and the trust was already established. However, multiple attempts to reach them on the phone proved futile and all the emails she sent to the customer service team were also not being responded to. Finally, after a couple of days she was able to get through to a person who could not possibly care less about the issue, let alone apologize for it or rectify it.
The person spoke rather dismissively and the icing on this unpleasant cake was that even the manager, although a little apologetic, was not able to address the problem at hand! Humorously enough, once the call was cut she received an SMS from the network provider asking for her feedback on the call. Imagine that. My mum did respond with her feedback and told them exactly how the call went. Seconds later, she received a rather callous reply “Thanks for helping us better our services with your feedback”.
And yes, as you may have already guessed, there was no follow up on the issue and my mum, after a decade long association, is now happily subscribing to another network provider.
HOW DO YOU MAKE THE MOST OF CUSTOMER FEEDBACK DATA?
The beauty of a holistic Customer Experience Management program is that it is all encompassing. Especially when it comes to Closing the Loop – which is nothing but making sure the process of collecting feedback is promptly followed by the process of rectifying the concerns. The issues that have been raised in the feedback must be resolved in as little time as possible. Once the resolution is complete, informing the relevant customer that their feedback was looked into, addressed and rectified is what Closing the Loop is all about.
A digital Customer Experience Management Software is a boon when it comes to loop-closing because it not only helps you collect and centralize feedback data, but also lets you know a lot of minute details like:
1. What percentage of your clientele is not happy with certain aspects of your restaurant/store/showroom?
2. How many people were unhappy with ‘Staff Courtesy’’?
3. On which day of week do you have maximum negative feedback, at which location, by which demographic, at what time, etc
The options are astounding. You can set as many filters as you can and using that data, you can immediately start out the resolution process by analysing the data and figuring out where the loophole lies. This not only helps you in winning back the customer but also helps you, as an organization, to perfect your internal operations and processes. Using the negative feedback as a means to ameliorate operational strategies can do your business unimaginable wonders!
A solid CEM platform lets you do all this and more in Real-Time. You can collect feedback, analyse it, take pointers from the analysis, implement changes to fix the issue and get back to your customers with a customized message which could read something like:
Hey! Thought we’d let you know that we did take your feedback into account and we’ve resolved it. So, when are you coming back to see it for yourself?
PS: You’re getting a 5% discount on your next purchase since your feedback helped us improve our service. Thank you!
Can you imagine the smile on the customers’ face when they receive that message?
This is what Closing the Loop does. It helps you redeem yourself in the eyes of the customer and doing this in as little time as possible is where you can score some extra points! Making it a habit within your organization will save you a lot of money in acquiring new customers, in conducting staff training every now and then, in coming up with ridiculously expensive branding and marketing exercises, etc.