No Net Promoter (or VoC) programme is complete without a “closed loop”. This is geek speak for following up and acting on customer feedback. But while many companies focus their efforts on bringing dissatisfied customers (aka. detractors) back to the happy zone, more is required to run a truly successful NPS programme. In fact, there’s a triple loop to be closed:
LOOP 1: PACIFYING DETRACTORS
This is the closed loop we all know and love. Whenever a customer scores us 0-6 on the Reichheld scale, alerts go off and actions get taken. First to make sure that the individual customer who had a bad experience stops being unhappy. Then, to ensure the business doesn’t make the same mistakes again. All of the above gets supported by systems, processes, KPI’s and mindset programmes that deeply embed this practice into the organisation. As detractor numbers go down, managers smile.
LOOP 2: DELIGHTING PASSIVES
The second loop asserts that pacifying detractors isn’t enough. Sure, it may provide some quick wins for boosting scores, but the Net Promoter philosophy isn’t about reducing the number of unhappy customers. It’s about turning people into promoters for the brand. A second alert level is required which - just like for detractors - triggers the organisation to action. This time not to stop the unhappiness, but to turn satisfied but otherwise indifferent customers (passives) into promoters. Individually, and structurally. In a way, it’s about creating a mindset, and a way of working that brutally raises the Net Promoter alert bar from 6 to 8.
LOOP 3: ACTIVATING PROMOTERS
Even when all customers are promoters, the work isn’t done. Business is about making money and the third loop focuses on monetising your Net Promoter programme’s results. It’s a third alert level that kicks into gear whenever customers score their experience 9 or 10. This focuses the business on the money. How can we make sure these customers buy everything they could sensibly buy from us? Can we leverage their recommendation through testimonials and introductions? Can we learn what we got right and leverage this throughout the business? And how can we achieve all the above, without annoying them?
The underlying process for each of these three loops is almost identical. Still, the mindset, skills and behaviours to make them a success couldn’t be more different. The first, is about operational improvement. The second about building meaningful and differentiated experiences. The third focuses on sensibly capturing the value of promoters. As individuals, but also as a group.
Taken together, they constitute a triple closed loop programme that listens to 100% of the customer feedback you receive and ensures that all parts of the business are involved in acting on what customers say.
Have you got them all in place?
About this blog
Whenever inspiration strikes, I use this space to share my thoughts on customer experience management, storytelling or what ever else crosses my mind.