Are you really listening to your customers?

screenshot_26There is a problem in the disconnect between the metric and business performance.  It’s often a loss of confidence among frontline workers when the metrics don’t seem to explain big swings in customer satisfaction. Further, in some companies, there is confusion about whether transactional or relational measures matter more, and, in others, a simple lack of results from too much focus on one top-line metric.

Many companies don’t have the culture to loop customer feedback through the front line to improve behavior or connect it to innovation. The heart of journey- centric measurement is the organizing principle of measuring customer experience at the journey level, as opposed to looking only at transactional touchpoints or overall satisfaction.  For example, from a customer perspective, one of the most important KPIs that data show matter in an issue-resolution journey is the time from issue to resolution. If the company is looking only at a touchpoint—say, a call interaction—then the total elapsed time until resolution never will appear as an element that drives customer satisfaction, nor will it become a focus for improvement.

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In addition to tying operational KPIs to journey feedback, another essential effort is building organizational and cultural elements into the foundation of a measurement system.  The first is at the front line, with employees closing the loop with customers on direct feedback, then using that insight to change the way the process is designed or executed.  This must come from leaders and supervisors, new rewards and consequences, improved training in how to act, and a strong conviction and understanding among employees about why the change is important for the customer, for themselves, and for the company.

For designers and engineers in marketing or research and development, it is necessary to create a pipeline of feedback and actions, rather than merely reporting metrics, so the customer’s voice is always present. But research shows that whether a company is using a net promoter score, customer- satisfaction score, customer-effort score, or another popular metric of the day, it matters

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No one metric is the best for all businesses or customer journeys, and best-in-class operators generally choose the metric that is most predictive of their desired business outcome, which can vary by industry.  It also requires closing the loop on core issues by applying the feedback to the journey level, analyzing the KPIs, and rewiring the organization to fix the root causes of any problems.

One thing is for certain, brands cannot afford to ignore its customers. The segment of “one” can be more important that bigger demographic segments.

About richmeyer

Rich is a passionate marketer who is able to quickly understand what turns a prospect into a customer. He challenges the status quo and always asks "what can we do better"? He knows how to take analytics and turn them into opportunities and he is a great communicator.

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