If your company has a superior product or is priced lower than the competition, those two factors alone are not a sure bet to gaining more market share. Customers expect – in fact – feel entitled to – a superior customer experience.
Enter Voice of the Customer.
Voice of the Customer (VOC) programs and team members are integral to a company’s success. The goal of VOC programs is to create a positive and consistent customer experience, across channels. VOC programs, to be successful, need to go beyond customer surveys – way beyond surveys. Building a VOC program is challenging and it requires buy-in from cross-functional teams.
The results, when done strategically, are well worth it.
Here are some key benefits you can expect when a VOC program is implemented well:
- Gain and retain customers
- Streamline processes
- Improve your cross-sell and upselling metrics
- Implement change
- Set your company apart
VOC programs run the gamut from omni-channel contact center programs to how the sales team is trained to capitalize on upselling and cross-selling opportunities. Similarly, the methods to capture what customers want are equally varied.
To truly capture the customer’s voice, the most effective technique is to literally listen to the customer’s voice. Surveys are too one-dimensional and give close-ended responses. Feedback from the sales team and customer-facing teams are simply too biased. Relying on tools such as website heat mapping and analytics show you only how customers behaved; they don’t give you insight into what customers would have preferred to do, nor do they tell you why customers behaved the way they did.
To build a VOC program that truly captures the customer journey and gives your team insight into how and why customers behave the way they do, you simply must incorporate qualitative research into your VOC process.
What do we mean exactly by qualitative research?
Qualitative research is a form of market research that relies on person-to-person insights. We interview. We host focus groups. We take internal teams and customers through customer journey mapping exercises. VOC qualitative research is conducted both internally (with sales teams, customer experience, marketing, and product teams) as well as externally with customers. The combination of the insights gives us a clear path forward in helping a company design a VOC program that is based on real behavior and needs.
Just how impactful are well-designed VOC programs?
When we apply qualitative market research methodologies in helping companies develop and refine their VOC programs, the results are an uptick in key metrics, including Customer Satisfaction Scores (CSAT), customer loyalty (as measured through Net® Promoter Scores), and an increase in sales, referrals, and retention.
It’s 2016. Your customers expect you to listen. Equip your team with cutting-edge qualitative market research that will transform your VOC program.