How do you know what your customers are thinking? Ask them.
Do you know what your customers think about the products and services you are providing? Are they likely to buy from you again? Will they renew their contract? If you don't know what your customers think, you need to ask them. The insights you receive from a proactive voice of the customer (VOC) program will let you know what is and is not working for your customers. A customer who complains, and whose complaint is resolved, is more likely to be a long-term customer than the one who never provides you any feedback at all. Customers that take the time to share their thoughts with you are engaged with you and your brand. Don't you want to know the level of engagement your customers have with you? Ask your customers about your transactions, as well as your relationships. I prefer using a three-question Net Promoter survey. I find this to be a quick and easy way for the customer to let us know how we're doing and what we can do to improve.
Here are a couple of use cases:
Surveying heavy cell phone users enabled us to learn how they wanted to be rewarded for their loyalty. By learning that customers wanted the latest and greatest technology, we ensured they did and subsequently reduced churn by 9% and prevented $16 million in lost revenue.
For a swimming pool OEM, we surveyed 3,289 pool and spa distributors to learn what we could do to positively differentiate our products and services from the market leader. The insights provided by these B2B customers enabled us to make changes to our products and services that enabled our client to move from third-place to first-place in the industry.
VOC research is invaluable in both B2C and B2B markets. It's still people selling to people. As such, it's important to understand what's really on customers' minds rather than assuming we already know. Consider spending time and money to prevent customer attrition rather than focusing all of your efforts on getting new customers. Are you using VOC to reduce churn and improve the customer experience in your business?