Just surveys do not help - Meet customers

Jul 04, 2021

Whenever I meet customers, I return with good information on improvement to my products and services. When I return, I compare the information with customer survey results and often get surprised why the surveys do not capture the same information.

Generally, customer feedback is sought through surveys, and surveys happen at regular intervals. However, there are things like sampling and survey response rates. While using a suitable sampling method and getting response rates close to an industry standard provides reliable results, some critical feedback is always lost. The loss may be due to missing out on valuable feedback from some customers based on the sample size,  low survey response rates, or surveys are unable to capture complete feedback from the customers. There is no one way to get the right sampling or get great response rates or make surveys comprehensive. All these need continuous testing, and practically difficult to always get them right.

So, one way to address this is to meet customers regularly. I am not talking about customer interviews to gather feedback but having a schedule to meet customers regularly from the customer experience function standpoint. The meetings need not always be once we have the survey results, but have a schedule comfortable to the customer and meet them as per the schedule. While the feedback already we have from the surveys may be one of the inputs, ask the customers how they feel about products and the services we deliver. I am sure you will get feedback positive or negative feedback that is not captured through the surveys. Add this feedback to your customer experience improvement efforts and close the loop with the customers on their feedback.

My regular customer meetings helped me get additional feedback, but the relationship also helped me with the information on new products and services the customers are looking forward to.

So, meet the customers regularly, get additional feedback, and build relationships that help you deliver exceptional experiences to your customers.