If your company is priced lower than the competition or has a superior product, those two factors alone are not definitely going to gain you more market share. Often, customers feel entitled to a superior customer experience.
Enter Voice of the Customer.
Voice of the Customer (VOC) team members and programs are vital for the success of a company. The VOC programs’ goal is to create a consistent and positive customer experience, across channels. To be successful, VOC programs need to be more – way more – than just surveys. Building a VOC program requires buy-in from cross-functional teams and is challenging. We’ll just go ahead and say that upfront.
However, the results, when done strategically, are well worth it.
Here are some key benefits you can expect when a VOC program is well implemented:
- Improve your cross-sell and upselling metrics
- Streamline processes
- Implement change
- Set your company apart
- Gain and retain customers
VOC programs run the gamut, from training the sales team to omni-channel contact center programs to how to capitalize on upselling and cross-selling opportunities. In similar fashion, the techniques to securing what customers want are equally varied.
To fundamentally capture the customer’s voice, the most effective technique is to literally listen to their voice. Surveys give close-ended responses and are too one-dimensional. Feedback from the customer-facing teams and sales teams are simply too biased. Relying on tools such as analytics and website heat-mapping show you only how customers behaved; they don’t help you understand what customers would have preferred to do, nor do they give you insight as to why customers behaved the way they did.
To build a VOC program that provides a complete picture of the customer journey and which gives your team acumen into how and why customers behave the way they do, it is essential that you incorporate qualitative research into your VOC process.
What exactly do we mean by qualitative research?
Qualitative research is market research that relies on person-to-person insights. We host focus groups. We take internal teams and customers through customer journey mapping exercises. We interview. Qualitative research for VOC programs is conducted both internally (with marketing, customer experience, and sales and product teams) as well as externally with customers. The composite of the insights provides a clear-cut path forward in helping a company design a VOC program that is based on needs and real behavior.
Exactly how impactful are well-designed VOC programs?
When we apply qualitative market research methodologies in helping companies refine and develop their VOC programs, the ensuing effects are upticks in key metrics, including customer loyalty (as measured by Net® Promoter Scores), Customer Satisfaction Scores (CSAT), as well as increases in referrals, sales, 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.