Overcoming Hurdles In Your VoC Strategy
Voice of Customer (VoC) is a buzzword that has been around for a while now, but what is it? How can we make a foolproof strategy and avoid the hurdles that affect many VoC programs out there? Check out our top tips below!
What is VoC and why should you have a strategy?
VoC is a term used to describe the process of collecting customer feedback. This can be via a number of methods, from email surveys to focus groups. The aim? Create a detailed set of customer wants and needs and then use this data to improve your product/service.
This isn’t an innovative concept – it’s just new terminology. Any time that a company asks for feedback from customers, it’s all part of the larger VoC strategy. Successful companies analyse this data and dig deeper to discover the pain points and what can be improved. Why? Well, asking for the data means that they can understand the customer’s point of view. If you aren’t doing this, then you assume that you know what is best for them…and that never ends well.
Overcoming the hurdles in your strategy
So, where do the hurdles come in? Let’s start with looking at the blockers when it comes to creating and implementing your VoC strategy.
Don’t pick and choose who you collect data from. The wider the net, the more feedback you will receive. A mistake often made is that companies only ask the favoured few for feedback, those customers who are already seen as promoters and rockstars. Companies that do this are showing that they don’t actually want to improve, that they don’t appreciate their customers’ voice. Go big or go home!
We often see that the VoC strategy lies with the Customer Support or Customer Success teams. They take it very seriously. But the ownership stops there. How can you expect change to occur if other teams don’t prioritise the responses from the VoC program? By ensuring that all of your employees feel responsible, you will see improved inter-departmental relationships and quicker product changes.
Ask your employees
Don’t limit your VoC program to customers only. You can, and should, include employees who work closely with them. Sales reps, account managers, support teams, anyone with daily customer contact. Most of the time, they hear unfiltered feedback. So include them!
You can’t expect to send out a customer survey and be done with it. This is why many VoC strategies fail. Your customers are all unique, with different languages and communication preferences. You need to offer different modes of communication in order to receive the most feedback. Not sure how to do this? Check out our trends article where we discuss omnichannel support.
One last tip when it comes to communication? Avoid all of the corporate jargon. Use the same terminology as your customers. This will improve response rates and create a more empathetic feeling towards your brand.
Collect feedback at the right time
This is a good one! Don’t leave it too late to ask for feedback. But don’t send it too quickly either! Sound impossible? We promise you it isn’t! What happens if you send it too quickly? Imagine sending a request for feedback on a product that hasn’t arrived yet. At best, the customer won’t reply. At worst, they will be annoyed at how long it is taking.
So, how can you do this? One option is to include a QR code on your products. When they receive it, all they have to do is scan it with their phone and they can leave voice or written feedback. This avoids any mishaps with timings and also allowed live customer feedback as they use the product.
Use different methods
In order to gather a wide range of feedback, you need to use different methods. We recommend active feedback methods such as surveys, focus groups, and customer interviews. You should also take note of passive methods such as customer support data, online reviews, and social media mentions. The only way to have a truly all-encompassing VoC strategy is to include all of these forms of feedback.
Do something about it!
So you’ve gone through all of the effort to gather your VoC data. Now what? Well, you need to do something about it. There is nothing more annoying to a customer than taking the time to provide feedback, only to see nothing change. There is nothing more satisfying than seeing your feedback taken on board to improve a product/service.
Once you gather the feedback, let your customers know that you are analysing it. If you are making changes, tell them. If not, explain why. By keeping them updated, they will feel heard and appreciated, boosting your customer retention numbers and increasing brand loyalty.