You might not know this but getting feedback from your customers can be the cornerstone to expand your business. You have to do this right though.
You have to be geared towards providing the best possible experience for upcoming and current customers alike.
Here are the best and most effective ways to approach customers for feedback.
Why Feedback is Important
He might be the world’s richest man, but South African born tech business tycoon, Elon Musk, knows the importance of getting feedback to satisfied- and not so satisfied- customers.
Back in 2016, Musk was alerted to a post on Twitter from French Entrepreneur Loïc Le Meur.
Le Meur Tweeted that owners of electric-powered Tesla vehicles were taking advantage of charging ports as an excuse to park their cars, “free of charge”.
Musk spared no effort to find a reasonable solution to the dilemma. In less than a week, Tesla stated it was going to charge $0.40 for every minute a fully charged Tesla remained stationed at its parking stations.
This might be a harsh approach, but was merely a reaction to feedback from a customer that could easily have disappeared, and cause a domino effect on other Tesla customers.
Don’t Underestimate the Feedback Loop
Musk’s decisive action is a perfect example of how important it is for a business owner to be in the know of his or her operations. This emphasizes the importance of personalized care methods across every spectrum your customers exist in.
The marketing director of A.I company Keatext, Catherine Constant, has said that providing a feedback loop is still underestimated in a lot of businesses.
“Closing the feedback loop means acknowledging your customers, and letting them know that their feedback was heard. Sadly, a very small fraction of companies do not take the time to do this.”
She recommended that businesses who wish to make feedback more actionable need to take a test case, and confirm any action taken is made known to your customer(s) who brought the issue to light.
“To create and maintain a healthy relationship with your customers, they must be able to see the real impact their feedback is having on your business and ultimately, their continued experience.
For example, if you decide to implement new features based on several product requests from a group of customers, send them a personalized update through their preferred channel of communication. Be sure to describe how their suggestions and ideas have contributed to creating a better customer experience.”
Managing Partner of the Phelon Group, Whitney Wood, said that a company’s value is determined by their actions after receiving feedback.
She said that doing follow ups is directly linked to the level of reliability customers will have with your business.
According to her, a small fraction of customers are convinced that many businesses attentively pay attention to their feedback. This is quite worrying.
Why Don’t Customers Leave Feedback?
Knowing how to get feedback from customers leaves a world of difference. Asking for feedback like it’s a choice doesn’t motivate customers to respond.
Have you been going with the “feel free give us a review” approach?
What you are actually saying is “Meh, we will be alright regardless of what you have to say”
You have to take into account the reasons why customers give online reviews. When you are for all intents and purposes, gunning for free information and understanding from your customers, you have to underline the value their response has.
With the decline of customer value Is it really any surprise response clients do give a damn when asked with such unimportance?
Don’t waste their time.
Prove that their feedback will not be tossed to the wolves and overlooked. Authentic customer feedback is precious and if you really want it, you have to be sincere and deliberate.
Below are a few of the best approaches you can take.
Sending a Follow-Up E-mail.
The most common way to ask for customer feedback is via e-mail. You should send an e-mail shortly after your services have been provided or a few of your products have been bought.
When you shop online or stay at a hotel, you are most likely to receive an invite to rate your experience.
There are a few email marketing platforms you can use to automate this. What makes this even more handy is that they tend to spread all reviews across different networks like Google, Yelp and of course Facebook.
Add Feedback to Your WiFi
Many leisure focused businesses such as coffee shops, hotels, and even a few commercial stores provide free WiFi to entice customers to their whereabouts.
The increase of traffic to the business outlet presents an equally valuable chance to accumulate a bit of feedback.
A good idea would be to let customers create a free account to access the WiFi spot.
This gives you the opportunity to sneak in and use their captured email address to ask for feedback thereafter. Other than that you can just ask how their experience is while they’re online- WiFi for a review sounds like a sweet deal.
Paper Feedback Cards
If you are feeling a bit old-school you can simply dish out pen and paper feedback surveys. This approach is a rather cheap way to gather a few reviews, but it can have a few costs that you might not be thinking about right now.
Like what? You may ask.
Well to take important actions from feedback, the replies need to be tabulated in a database and then overviewed. This takes time and effort and you might have to employ someone if you don’t have the time to capture the data yourself.
Review live Chats
Live chat tools are becoming more popular when it comes to customer support and service.
Going through copies of live chats and grouping any feedback into groupings can help a business recognize inadequacies. Regularly talked about issues are tricky scenarios in your business that can be enhanced. Doing this will not only help with securing customer approval but also minimizes the essential resources needed for customer support.
Conduct customer interviews
You don’t need to have a big budget to do this successfully. Loyal customers are usually eager to give their feedback by just asking them. In spite of everything, they are the ones who are the most invested in doing business with you.
Add the human touch here and make certain that the customer is contacted by an actual person from your company. This will play a little bit on their ego, and become even more loyal, while increasing the likelihood of them providing valued feedback.
Observe Your Social Media
This is an ineffective way to get in contact with your customers. They are already keenly joining in on communities on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. You can add your voice to the conversation. Do things like replying to comments, send direct messages, and take part in knowing your customers to see how they truly feel about your business.
On the chance that you get a negative review, prioritise this and respond quickly as well as professionally- ask Karen to take a deep breath and relax, you’re here to help.
Social media users want a fast response, so it would be best to give a resource to each channel. Carefully observing your social media following is a great way to observe developments, fashions and trends that can have an impact on your business.
Who doesn’t like to be rewarded for their time?
Answering a bunch of questions can take away time from a customer’s hectic agenda.
So it would be a good idea to offer a reward for the time they take to answer your questions.
Even though money or discounts are great, remember that the reward can be a whole lot of things.
You can incentivize customers using free content that’s useful to their everyday lives. This could be an e-book, small free samples, or an entry into a competition.
Hold Your Horses
As great as getting immediate feedback may seem, it’s better when it is considerate and precise. From time to time it will take time for your customers to form an opinion in doing business with you.
When rushing a customer to give you feedback immediately, you won’t be able to accurately capture how the product or service affected them over time.
Patience is key here as you may find that they might have some prolonged issues as they continue to use your product or service.
Customer satisfaction is not the responsibility of customer service sections, but should be a central part of your business. Find the best and cost-effective ways to engage with customers and keep them smiling.
Going the extra mile means customers will show loyalty to you leading to a chain reaction of business growth.