The Value of Customer Satisfaction

The need to understand customer behavior and decision making has never been more critical. It is essential to understand who your customer is, what and who influences them, and what their unmet needs are.

A Voice of the Customer (VOC) program can be a catalyst for driving significant change in your organization. A comprehensive VOC program will impact customer retention as well as innovation, product development, and new or enhanced service offerings,

What Do You Know About The Voice of Your Customer?

  • Why You?
    Why are they buying your products/services?
  • How satisfied are they?
    Do you understand the customer experience?  How satisfied are your customers with your products/services?
  • What is most important?
    What are the drivers for being a satisfied or dissatisfied customer?
  • What are their unmet needs?
    Are you aware of your customers unmet needs that could erode customer loyalty?
  • Who are your customers?
    Do you know who your customers are? What is their profile, size, revenue, industry, and other demographics?
  • What Information do you have?
    Do you have current contact information? Telephone number, email address, touch point with your company – purchasing department versus end user in company.

Voice of the Customer Research Process

Customer research process goals design measure analyze improvement track

How to Access the
Voice of the Customer
Methodology Considerations

  • Online
    With the increase of call screening and a growing preference for digital communications, an online methodology is an efficient means of reaching customers that also allows survey completion at the convenience of the respondent.
    • Responses are tracked and reminder emails are sent to ensure a high response rate.
    • Considerations with using an online survey methodology include the following:
      • Are customer email addresses available?
      • If statistically reliable data is required, is the volume of customers with email addresses sufficient enough to be statistically reliable?
    • Is there a need to expose the customer to a visual or audio stimulus?
  • Telephone
    Able to conduct a more in-depth survey; however cost is typically higher compared to online surveys.
    • Are telephone numbers available, and if cell phone number only, has the customer agreed to be contacted via cell phone.
    • In the case of B2B, is this the most efficient way to reach a customer, or is an online methodology more feasible?
    • Could a telephone methodology be used to recruit or engage the customer to be sent a link to an online survey?
  • Direct Mail
    Based on customer information available and survey objectives may be a viable alternative to online or telephone.
  • Ethnographies
    Provides an opportunity to observe and evaluate product use and behavior in context in a natural environment in-home or on-site.
  • Social Media
    Identify what is being said about your brand/products online.
  • Online Communities
    Create your own online community to access as required for feedback and evaluation.
  • Advisory Panels
    Powerful B2B approach to test concepts and obtain feedback on product development, future trends and unmet needs.
  • Focus Groups/In-Depth Interviews
    In-person opportunity to delve deeper into behavioral understanding and purchase motivations.
  • 800# Inbound
    Real-time point of contact response and evaluation following transaction/touch-point.
  • Hybrid Methodologies
    A combination of the above methodologies as required to access and reach various customer populations.

Program Design Considerations

  • Voice of the Customer research can be conducted in a one or two step approach. A two-step approach includes Discovery followed by Validation. Discovery is used to identify salient issues that are then validated in a larger scale study designed to be representative of all customer segments. The approach will be based on research goals and objectives.
  • To ensure your VOC research is reliable and yields actionable insights the following elements are essential:
  • The study design and research tools should be designed to meet your research needs, goals, and objectives.
  • Ensure that your research approach is customized to meet your specific needs.
  • The sample design and selection of respondents is representative of your customer profile.
  • While there are many types of DIY software programs available, it is important that the software used is robust enough to generate analytics to drive strategic action. Compare the economy of internal solutions versus the value of partnering with a company that specializes in VOC research.
  • Budgets should be kept in mind and be realistic in terms of the cost and value of the research and the implementation of the findings.
  • Once implemented, be committed to the entire research process or it will be a waste of time and resources.

Analysis/Interpretation/ Implementation Considerations

  • The challenge associated with distilling insights from voluminous survey data can be daunting. An organized, planned approach is a critical first step. Be sure to consider how the information derived will be analyzed, by whom, and what format will be most meaningful to you for implementation.
  • Caution should be used in projecting results based on small sample sizes.
  • The interpretation and analysis of the data needs to be actionable and communicated effectively.
  • A failing of many customer outreach initiatives is the promise to customers that their opinions are very important, and yet inaction follows completion of the project.