Net Promoter News: nib prescribes NPS, DNA art and promoters, Whistler Blackcomb whistles past rivals, Surety1 goes from -6 to +52, Gold for Forest Pines
nib prescribes Net Promoter Scores
Australian health insurer nib has announced it is about six months away from launching its own mobile app. Called ‘White Coat,’ the app will help patients make informed decisions when choosing a healthcare professional.
According to boss Mark Fitzgibbon, Net Promoter is a conspicuous element of the app. “You’ll be able to go online via your phone or iPad or PC or laptop, search for a medical provider in your area – a doctor or hospital or dentist – and go and see their Net Promoter Score,” he told the Australian Financial Review.
This is an interesting development for a couple of reasons.
The first is that nib is a client of CustomerGauge and Genroe, our Australian partner. In fact, we recently posted a case study on how nib is using Net Promoter to ensure that its rapid growth does not come at the expense of customer service. It is particularly heartening to see that the metric we advocate and work with has made such a positive difference to our clients that they are recommending it to their own customers!
The second reason is that this news comes hot on the heels of the rollout of the Net Promoter-based “friends and family” patient satisfaction measure in the UK. Is Net Promoter an emerging trend in the healthcare sector? It may be too early to call at this stage, but we’ll be keeping a close eye on developments! Australian Financial Review
DNA art and the importance of Promoters
From the quirkier end of the online retail business world, DNA11 is a site that creates works of art from its customers’ DNA or lip imprints. (And yes, it’s a real business).
According to co-founder Adrian Salamunovic, in the age of social media the company’s Net Promoter Score is more important than ever. The reason he gives is that social networks offer Promoters a potentially powerful platform from which to make unsolicited recommendations. To which we’d add, this would be particularly true for an unconventional, conversation-worthy topic such as your new DNA Ancestry Portrait (yes, they apparently exist too). Las Vegas Business Press
Whistler Blackcomb whistles past rivals
Canadian ski resort Whistler Blackcomb has been named best resort in Canada in terms of satisfaction, customer loyalty and commitment to promoting and growing skiing and snowboarding by the Canadian Ski Council (CSC). The resort also achieved the highest Net Promoter Score in Canada for the season. Pique News Magazine
Surety1 goes from -6 to +52
According to a self-puffer, insurance provider Surety1’s first score was returned two years ago, and was a miserable -6. However, in the time since then, the company has invested in bettering its customer satisfaction levels to such an extent that its NPS for June this year was a dramatically-improved +52. PR Web
The verdict is in: Gold for Forest Pines
In the UK Forest Pines Hotel & Golf Resort has been awarded a VenueVerdict Gold award for delivering exceptional service. The recognition is awarded to hotels with a Net Promoter Score of +70 and above. At this point in time, only 31 hotels in the country are recognised with the status. Hotel Industry UK
- At its most recent earnings call, car rental company Hertz announced that its average Net Promoter Score for the Rental Car division improved by 40 basis points. (Non-bankers note, = 0.4% improvement). Hertz consistently call out NPS along with other excellent metrics in their presentations. Seeking Alpha
- ShoreTel closed the second half of 2012 with an NPS of +62 for the business and NPS of +64 for Resellers. Shoretel Blog
Net Promoter Vacancy
Are you a customer satisfaction buff itching to get your hands on a new role?
An iconic Australian company is now seeking a Customer Community Lead. The successful applicant will be able to build and lead an NPS community across the operations of a large organisation. If this sounds like it may be you, please visit the ad for more details.
Net Promoter News: A Nation of Shopkeepers say “Meh” to Points Cards but #1′s Waitrose, Accuray enters loyalty zone, Earnings ‘n’ NPS from Aviva, Hertz, Overstock, Bank Montreal plus Doxim’s self-promo fails advocacy test
British shoppers think loyalty cards are past “Best Before” date
What drives loyalty among shoppers? This week a Net Promoter survey across 1,200 British shoppers was released – with some eye-opening results.
While you may think cost-effectiveness was a sure way to driving loyalty, the brand with the most loyal customers was premium supermarket chain Waitrose. [Check out our previous Waitrose coverage]
Based on that, it might be reasonable to assume that customer service and quality were the main drivers of loyalty. Well, sort of. In fact, the biggest driver of loyalty was “Good price for good quality,” followed by “Customer service; product quality.” But that doesn’t mean cheap prices aren’t important – discount supermarket Aldi was second on the ladder, not far behind Waitrose.
But perhaps the biggest surprise of the survey surrounded loyalty cards. Despite the name, they don’t seem to be effective. Loyalty card pioneer The Co-operative Group, has the least loyal customers, and Tesco, which operates the mammoth-sized Clubcard scheme, has the third least. By contrast, Waitrose has only recently launched a loyalty card initiative.
These were the key findings, but also intriguing for us Net Promoter junkies are a few observations on the supermarket chains’ Net Promoter scores against their overall business performance. Not only did Waitrose and Aldi record the best and second best scores respectively, they have been among the two fastest-growing grocery retail chains in recent years. The Co-op, which scored -14, sacked hundreds of head office employees just last week. And Tesco, which scored -8, recently gave its first profit warning in 20 years.
Of course, Net Promoter Scores and business performance are not always in sync. But we believe there is more than a little truth in an independent 2005 study by the London School of Economics which was quoted in the article. The study found that Net Promoter “may be useful not only in predicting sales growth but, also predicting share performance and employee productivity”.
If that’s the case, I think I just felt Tesco shudder. Those scores in full:
|Store||Net Promoter Score|
|Marks & Spencer||-10|
|Source: Grocer/Satmetrix Mar 2012||The Grocer|
Big Data Analytics and the role of Net Promoter
The rise of big data has been the subject of much discussion over the last few years, as businesses try to capture, analyze, and capitalize from it.
Bernard Marr, author of a book on the topic called “The Intelligent Company” suggested in a post this week that while traditional KPIs will remain vital tools to chart business strategy, they will increasingly be supported by analysis of “big data” – such as unstructured conversations across social media networks or search engine keywords.
He suggests that increasingly, companies may utilize tested metrics such as Net Promoter to assess advocacy and loyalty among a group of customers, but supplement this with big data analysis, such as social media analysis of the conversations around the product or brand on platforms such as Facebook and Twitter.
We have long been firm advocates of a customer-centric approach to business, and therefore what we like about this approach is that it sensibly places your relationship with your customers at the centre of your strategy. Despite the changes brought about by big data, sometimes the fastest route to nurturing delighted customers is by asking them one simple question: “How likely is it that you would recommend our company to a friend or colleague?” Smart Data Collective [Editors note: Bernard Marr has "75 measures every manager needs to know" but Adam Dorrell of CustomerGauge bests him by two in "77 Essential Metrics"]
Does a social media presence affect your Net Promoter Score?
The past few years have seen an enormous amount of noise (and some informative discussion) around the rise of social media, but what happens when a marketing-leading brand puts little or no effort into creating a corporate social media presence?
Conventional wisdom might tell you that the brand in question is missing out on an enormous opportunity. However, a post this week argues that beyond the hype, social media is just one medium through which customers interact with a brand. And if customers are consistently being delighted by that brand every time they interact with it, they will in turn advocate it to people around them – their friends, families, and social media communities.
According to the post author, automotive general manager Peter Anthony, the key takeaway is that corporate social media initiatives are not always necessary to achieving a high Net Promoter Score. (Note: While he cites Costco as an example to support his argument, we did find a Costco page on Facebook with nearly half a million fans, so we aren’t sure that the brand does not have a clear social media strategy.)
At any rate, we agree with the point, but we’d like to add a significant caveat. There may be a select few large, highly-advocated brands with enough positive momentum to rely on positive word-of-mouth buzz across social media channels to help generate advocacy. However, if you do not have a corporate presence on social media, that is one less channel you have to delight your customers and nurture new advocates.
In short, although for many brands there are risks associated with being on social media, the argument of whether to be in the space or not has already largely passed most of us by. The question for most companies now isn’t whether a social media affects your Net Promoter Score. Instead, it’s this: How can I nurture new advocates across my social media platforms? Peter Anthony’s blog
Accuray enters the loyalty zone
It’s another week, another NPS-based award for customer satisfaction as radiation oncology company Accuray Incorporated became the first company to receive Omega’s NorthFace ScoreBoard Award(SM) for excellence in customer satisfaction and Net Promoter Score.
This award system works on the Net Promoter Score’s basic principles. To be eligible, customers are surveyed a minimum of four times in the preceding year. However, rather than simply relying on the tried and tested NPS scale of zero to 10, Omega spins a little magic with the metric and converts it to a 5 point scale. Companies must achieve a score of 4.0 or above from their customers to receive the NFSB Award.
While we are not a fan of the mechanism or reasons for converting NPS to another scale, the basic principles of the award methodology seem sound, and we particularly like the fact that customers are surveyed four times in the preceding year. According to Omega, companies that average over 4.0 in their scale are in the so-called “Loyalty Zone,” and this ensures that they are “locking in profitable, long-term customer relationships.” But hey hey Accuray, what’s wrong with just sticking to the 0 – 10 scale? The Sacramento Bee
Doxim’s self-promotion fails the advocacy test
Last week we took a look at an announcement by virtual data room company V-Rooms that it had achieved an “A+” Net Promoter Score. While we weren’t sure exactly what that was, we were very enthusiastic about the tangible, clear steps the company is taking to further improve on its customer service.
This week, cloud-based enterprise content management firm Doxim has announced its “record Net Promoter Score” of 63 – an admirable figure, but a puffy piece of self-promotion that still leaves us feeling like we’ve just watched a nil-all draw.
Where V-Rooms focuses on the future and getting even better, Doxim discusses the past and how they compared to now. While V-Rooms drew a clear line of differentiation between their competitors, which are cutting down on customer service costs, Doxim compares its scores to global companies such as Sony, Google, Amazon and Apple – none of which are direct competitors and for which comparison is mildly interesting at best.
To wrap it up: Kudos on your score, Doxim. But what’s next? PR Web
Finance and NPS – A round up of recent company filings that mention Net Promoter.
Aviva PLC 2011 – reporting in London, Andrew Moss, Group Chief Executive Aviva said: “Last year more of our customers were willing to recommend us than ever before. We improved our customer satisfaction measure, Net Promoter Score(TM), last year and now more than half of our businesses operate in the upper quartile relative to local competition”. And in the UK: “Customer satisfaction levels and employee engagement have increased, with customer complaints down 20% in 2011. We’ve been changing the way we look after our customers by simplifying our processes and making them more customer-friendly. In our existing annuity business this has delivered a 26 point improvement in our Transactional Net Promoter Score(TM), achieved significant cost savings and helped reduce call volumes by around 20%.” Marketwatch
By the way, found on the web, really nice Net Promoter story from Andrew Moss, at Henley Business School June 2011. “…And when we look at our customer metrics, it’s an amazing thing but, here in the UK, our best net promoter score, which is how we measure customer satisfaction, is in our Death Claims Unit in York. So, how we deal with people in that very difficult situation, it’s amazing how people appreciate it if you really do deal with them like a human being” Aviva
Telecom Italia Adopt NPS (from Q4 2011 Earnings) “Move to our goals for the Mobile business… progressively shift customer care to self caring and adopt net promoter scoring across our organization to gauge customer preferences….” Seeking Alpha
Metro PCS (Q4 2011 Earnings call). Interesting as it’s in an answer to an analyst – shows that the COO understands NPS: Thomas C. Keys: “That’s a great question, Michael. The first thing is you’re asking me to give up a little bit of the secret sauce, so I’ll be happy to do that. [...] That works on the viral nature of how we advertise, at how we move a product, keeps our CPGA lower. It keeps our net promoter score higher…. ” SeekingAlpha
Bank Montreal Q1 2012 “This business continues to perform well with volumes higher across most products, and we continue to innovate in the execution of our strategy, achieving higher net promoter scores and increasing share of wallet” SeekingAlpha
Overstock Q4 2011. Report Net Promoter of 52 (see graph) “Customer, net promoter score has, slide 20, has still remained sort of astronomically high compared to retail in general. I just saw another scoring service came out and it put us right at the very top, we scored an 83, well, on another scoring service.” Seeking Alpha. and Slides
H&R Block (Q3 2012) “Additionally, our retention and Net Promoter Scores are up 150 and 400 basis points, respectively, demonstrating sustained improvement in 2 of our most important metrics.” Seeking Alpha, and Slides
Net Promoter News: Centrica +3, 10Ks from eBay, Nokia, HomeDepot – plus FaceBook stuff, Sony NPS-Man, Kamp skore
Net Promoter News 3 June 2010
Centrica supply Net Promoter Dashboard
Centrica (the Company Formerly Known as British Gas) come with plenty of customer experience baggage. To their great credit, they are reporting their Net Promoter progress by publishing on their site a chart and downloadable numbers. They also list goals: “British Gas’ NPS at the end of 2009 was -2, placing us equal first in the league table of major UK energy providers with three other suppliers. Our target for 2010 will be to increase this score to +3.” An example of transparency that we look forward to seeing more of. Source
Zuckerberg: Privacy down, NPS up!
Facebook’s privacy controls have been heavily criticized recently, but CEO Mark Zuckerberg is confident users care less about sharing data, more about possible subscription fees. And he knows this because he tracks what he calls “a special metric”, which most others call Net Promoter Score. “We’ve seen no meaningful change on the stats on any of that stuff,” which is how he refers to people quitting the ‘Book.
“Whenever we make a change, the net promoter score always goes down. But it will usually recover to a higher place than it was at before,” he continued. “So when we started rolling out these changes after f8, our net promoter score went down. And we thought it was because of the privacy issues. But what we found was that it actually went down because we made changes to our news feed…” Interesting reveal there – we would dearly like to see some more stats on how they are surveying people. And whether they gave permission. Maybe its not just hubris though, as yesterdays “Quit Facebook Day” apparently was a flop, and did not result in a significant amount of “that stuff”. VentureBeat and Forbes
At a recent conference, Sony Canada opened up about their Net Promoter journey. Excellent tips from Wayne Ground, CIO of the Canadian division, explaining how it was not initially driven by executives, but after getting daily reports, the president was quickly on board. Customers are invited to complete online surveys on call center interactions, website visits and retail store visits. They have sent more than 100,000 surveys with a response rate of 23%.
All detractors gets a follow-up contact from customer support. Promoters also receive a follow-up — a coupon for future Sony Canada purchases. The promoters who receive coupons tend to use them, and sales transactions with those customers are 40% higher than the average purchase.
Additionally, the company started to capture email addresses at the in-store locations. Once in-store managers and sales reps realized they were being evaluated, they caught on to the program pretty quickly, Ground said. The follow-up contacts have really made a difference: “When we phone back the day after they send in a survey, customers are blown away,” Ground said. “They can’t believe someone actually read it.” Source: – SearchCRM.com
Sage grows Net Promoter
Sue Swenson – CEO of Sage North America opened Sage Insights ’10, and revealed how it is “Maximizing existing assets“. Sage has climbed 10 points in its Net Promoter score, which quantifies customers’ “willingness to recommend to others.” It’s also boosted renewal rates from 90 percent up to 97 percent. Customer value comes from not just product functionality, EVP marketer Palsule said, it comes from how easy Sage is to do business with. Source DestinationCRM
Phones 4U Pay on NPS. Probably.
Mobile News reports on the fiendishly complex compensation scheme from High Street SIMmery Phones 4U. The scheme has so many “ifs” and “buts” it takes four paragraphs to summarise. NPS excerpt: “Phones 4U sales consultants will now have their full commission entitlement paid out if the store hits a Net Promoter Score of 37.5. Previously, stores had to achieve a score of 35 for consultants to receive full commission.” Mobile News
Temkin on Take-Up.
Bruce Temkin of Temkin Group blogs about how executives are using NPS: 400 people took their recent survey. Key numbers: 43% are using Net Promoter Score (NPS), and 65% of those people think that it has had a positive impact on their company. Temkin
Wall Street News – Our regular review of the 10-Ks
eBay Inc. (EBAY) – Q1 2010 Earnings Call
Chief Online Gavel Swinger John J. Donahoe called out how eBay is “…becoming a more customer focused company. We are driving improvements to our user experience and we are measuring our success with three customer oriented metrics; net promoter score, velocity and market share. I have tied a portion of our leadership compensation to customer satisfaction.” SeekingAlpha
But the public knew this already, as eBay’s top goals for 2010 were revealed in a tweet by their corporate blogger, Richard Brewer Hay. Having seen a poster in a stair well in San Jose he posted an image of it on yfrog. The goals include 1) Increase eBay’s Net Promoter score by 10 percentage points. Source Tamebay
Nokia Corporation (NOK) – Q1 2010 Earnings Call
Nokia CEO Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo talked NPS on the call, referring to C3 with Ovi Mail: “Since January there have been 10 million downloads [...] Consumer engagement is very high. In addition, feedback on the user experience has been very good with a double-digit positive net promoter score since we launched.” SeekingAlpha
In contrast Parks Associates research of the basic phone market called out some bad news for Nokia. Their Consumer Decision Process research of CE product buyers showed Nokia, once the unequaled leader of the U.S. mobile phone market, last year fell to the bottom of the list of brands of basic mobile phones that people would recommend, as measured by Net Promoter Score (NPS).
Basic Cell Phones by Brand, Q3 2009:
- Samsung 32%
- Motorola 26%
- Basic Cell Phones 21%
- LG 18%
- Nokia 7%
The Home Depot, Inc. (HD) Q1-2010 Earnings Call
Frank Blake, boss of DIY shedder Home Depot explained on Q1-2010 call called out customer service as key to success: “Last year, […] we re-trained every associate in the company on our customer service expectations. […] We’ve seen consistent improvement in our net promoter score […] in the first quarter, 600 basis points over last year, even as our transactions increased 4.2%.”
Analyst William Truelove from UBS is one of the few bankers we have seen ask about customer service (so for that he gets our “Analyst of the Week” prize) and quizzed EVP Ellison further “…Did you have any kind of service metrics from the customers?”. Marvin Ellison shoots back “Frank talked about the net promoter score […] We get roughly 100,000 customer surveys per week that we look at […] trying to make sure that we have incremental improvement week over week, month over month.” SeekingAlpha
From another source we learn that Home Depot net promoter score (a score measuring customer loyalty) is almost 70%, an improvement of 800bps in the past year, (Shareholder Meeting 20 May 2010)
Hertz Global Holdings, Inc. (HTZ) – Q1 2010 Earnings Call
Mark Frissora, Hertz CEO called an increase of nearly 8 points in NPS “Our net promoter score rose 790 basis points in the US or 18%, reflecting the appeal of a newer fleet and the addition of popular new car classes.” We estimated Hertz NPS at around mid 50s last year (http://customergauge.com/2009/02/net-promoter-news-hertz-drives-26-in-europe/) so that may put them in the 60s – firmly in the Cadillac class. SeekingAlpha
BMW forecourter up 66%
UK BMW seller Vines reports a 66% year-on-year increase in its Net Promoter Score results, as computed by Mondial. Vines BMW (or Mondial) say they have gained insight into its customer satisfaction levels, and using this to predict future business growth. Note of caution: the math is provided by a PR company, and based on that, it’s unclear if that’s and impressive 66 NPS points up (impressive only because it must have been a low base) or a 66% increase, i.e. 10 to 16, (equally non-impressive). Still, they pepper the text with superlatives, “massive” and “huge” so that must be good then. Source
The fantastically named RV Daily Report tells us that Kampgrounds of America has added yet another guest feedback service for its franchise owners to help them improve service and drive camper nights through increased referrals, based on Net Promoter Score. KOA’s new on-line camper feedback survey offer KOA owners near-instant feedback from their guests following their stays – so far 9,200 surveys have been completed by the campers. RV Daily Report