Written by Vivek Jaiswal | Co-founder, Customer Guru
In 1899, the Wright brothers began developing a plan for the first airplane. One that would actually take-off. By 1901 both Orville and Wilbur Wright had created a glider that would fly, but it didn’t work to their plan. In the winter of 1902, with the help of a mechanic – Charlie Taylor – they were able to design and build a gasoline engine to propel an airplane. Pretty impressive for their time, right? Well it didn’t end there. On the 17th of December, 1903 the Wright brothers were able to fly their first controlled flight, in a powered aircraft.
Today, without the true determination of the Wright brothers, we wouldn’t be flying to the Caribbean for our vacations. Imagine they took that initial plan, in 1899, and left it in their bottom drawer; never to invent the aircraft! However, that’s what many organisations, around the world, do with the feedback that they have collected. They simply leave it idle to rust away.
If you truly want to create change in your organisations and make it more customer centric then you should be doing more than just collecting feedback data. You must analyse the feedback and act upon it to truly bring about difference in your company.
In my previous post I discussed how you can ask your customers for feedback and how to actually design your feedback form. In this post I will discuss the next step, where you should analyse and visualise the feedback so that you can make it actionable.
1. Read (and listen to) all the feedback!
This may sound like a very simple step to you but you will be shocked by how many companies fail to do this. Whether it be positive or negative, you must be prepared to go through every bit of feedback and take the needed action. Not going through feedback is like carrying out a study, but not going through the results. What a waste of time and money!
As per a research, 1 in 1000 comments is a discontinuous innovation idea. Now why would you want to lose out on a huge breakthrough for your business? When your customers are giving you free ideas you better be reading through it and make the best of it for your company. Additionally, 4% of that feedback is directly actionable; which means that you can immediately take some action to improve the customer’s opinion of your company. You could end up losing potential loyal customers if you leave such feedback unattended.
One of the biggest problems that companies face with feedback analysis, is the burdensome task of a small group of people doing it. Assign a well-trained and enthusiastic customer service team to go through all the feedback, so that you can create a marvelous image of your company in your customers’ eyes. If you actually read through all the feedback you may even find some to give you a good laugh!
2. Identify issues and visualise it
There are so many ways that you can put all the feedback into a visual format. One that is actionable and easy to understand. After all, you should be able to do something about all that feedback. One very simple and effective way to collate your data is using a feedback quadrant.
The first step in creating such a quadrant would be to identify the main customer interaction flaws and strengths, at every touchpoint. In the example of KLM Airlines, they identified eight major features of their app. They then analysed the customer sentiment towards each feature; by going through all the feedback and reviews. Ultimately, such a visualisation will allow you to pinpoint the problems that customers face and change their experience by making improvements on your end.
3. Service Recovery
Now you’ve analysed all the feedback, so this is you golden opportunity to act upon it. This is where the service recovery paradox comes into play. The service recovery paradox is a situation where the customer thinks more highly of a company after it has corrected a problem with their service, compared to how he or she would regard the company if no service failure happened. Now don’t go around intentionally giving a customers a bad experience so that you can provide them with a service recovery.
You should aim to fix every problem that a customer has encountered to fill up the customer loyalty bucket to its rim, without any leaks! Whether it is an apology, a resolution to the issue, or a compensation, be prepared to go the extra mile so that the customer is satisfied. They will end up being even stronger brand advocates than your existing loyal customers.
Please don’t think that reverting to your customers regarding their feedback is a waste of time. Always remember those customers, for whatever reason, had a negative experience with your company. They took time out of their day to give you feedback for the betterment of your company. Take this opportunity to thank them for being such loyal customers and be prompt with disentangling their concerns.
Customer feedback my sound like a very fancy thing, and you may even be getting lots of feedback; if you’re not, there’s something wrong. However, all that feedback is useless without an actionable insight into it. Only if you take that feedback and make a difference to your customer experience is when you can unleash the full potential of your company, in your customers’ eyes.