6 Key Methodologies
Listening to and acting on customer feedback is essential to improve your CSAT ratings. Not only does feedback provide a window into real-world customer expectations, but negative feedback when shared publicly could damage brand reputation. Harvard Business Review went as far as to say that companies shouldn’t ignore listening to customer feedback in favour of Big Data analysis practices. While quantifiable data points and generic market research can reveal broad trends, customer feedback as shared via calls, emails, live chat, social media, and review forums offer insights into hidden improvement areas.
As a customer-centric brand, you probably have a number of feedback collection channels in place, feeding into a centralised CRM. Here are 6 strategies to help you make the most of this feedback data and act on them effectively:
Data from structured surveys, questionnaires, polls, etc., will be ingested by your CRM and a centralised analytics engine – but what about unprompted feedback? These often indicate a customer’s most pressing issues, which may not fit into a feedback template. Ask open questions when requesting feedback and ensure agents flag unprompted suggestions either manually or with the help of real-time speech analytics. Speech analytics would be able to extract important keywords and phrases from unprompted feedback and find dominant trends across your customer base.
Mapping the number of feedback inputs pertaining to a specific brand aspect (e.ga new feature or a website update) is useful for cutting through recency bias. This means that you can focus on high volume feedback that impacts the largest customer base, instead of being limited to the most recent piece of feedback. Similarly, repetition analysis reveals helpful suggestions that may otherwise go unnoticed simply because they are discussed (and overlooked) so often. Remember, with a high volume of feedback coming through different channels, there’s always a risk of bias influencing your decision-making. This methodology makes feedback analysis more objective, making sure that you can utilise the full potential of your data.
Dependent variables like NPS, CSAT, customer effort score, etc. are quantifiable elements of customer feedback that are directly linked to a business outcome. Independent variables like agent politeness, response time over emails, website/shop floor design, etc., have no direct correlation with business outcomes. Studying dependent and independent variable behaviour using feedback data tells you how the latter could drive the former and how descriptive actions could bring about quantifiable improvements in the business. For example, you could leverage training intervention to help agents handle problematic callers more politely, and this methodology will ensure that the training results in a quantifiable uptick in NPS, CSAT, etc.
This customer feedback data analysis methodology converts unstructured information like the customer’s mood, attitude, or sentiment into an action point. Monitor for specific keywords (positive or negative) to intervene with the appropriate action. For example, you can identify which moment in the conversation is best for upselling/cross-selling, or when supervisor intervention might help to avoid a possible dispute. Sentiment analysis can be applied to multichannel interactions across voice, chat, email, and social media. To achieve this, you would need to couple sentiment analysis with speech analytics (for processing audio) and text analytics, with the results feeding into a centralised CRM database.
Automation allows you to easily collate feedback data from multiple sources and derive a holistic picture of customer opinion. Automated workflows can be helpful in extracting action points without manual data manipulation. It can also trigger pre-configured events – for example, automatically send out a re-engagement email or promo if a customer enters negative feedback. Analysis automation relies on a tightly integrated CRM, where you could detect real-time feedback on social media, map against the customer’s 360-degree profile, and trigger an automated campaign via email (or any other channel).
Finally, consider outsourcing analytics activities, if you are a large business catering to a multilingual, multicultural customer base. This should also include feedback response and feedback form optimisation to create an engaging closed-loop cycle. There are third-party organisations and agencies that specialise in fields like data science, online reputation management (ORM), etc. helping you ramp up feedback analysis capabilities in a very short lead time. Such engagements should also factor in clear SLAs, defining the outcomes you want to achieve from feedback (e.g., designing new marketing campaigns) and improvements in performance KPIs.