Net Promoter News: Hubspot’s interview with Net Promoter’s creator, A Twitter NPS survey, Amex swipes employee churn
Hubspot interviews Fred Reichheld, Hubspot employee runs NPS survey on Twitter handle
This week, marketing software biz Hubspot’s CMO Mike Volpe interviewed Fred Reichheld, the creator of Net Promoter, on his thoughts on the system’s relevance for B2B v B2c, and whether it should be a metric that marketing cares about. His answer was unequivocal:
“Most marketers recognize how relevant NPS can make their function. It links their world to the world of the CFO and finance — because it is possible to calculate the economic value of a promoter, passive, or detractor in each customer segment,” he said.
In related news, Hubspot says it is a “big follower” of Net Promoter – and the organisation is not kidding. Recently a Hubspot ecommerce expert, Sam Mallikarjunan, ran a DIY Net Promoter survey to find out how many of his 70,000+ Twitter followers would recommend following him.
Over Twitter he told CustomerGauge that his Twitter handle recorded an NPS of +18. It’s an entertaining handle to follow – Sam identifies himself as being here to “smoke cigars, drink scotch & kick ass” – and has a very engaged follower base, so the score is perhaps a little lower than one may expect. But according to survey feedback, people want to see more questions and answers (interaction) rather than links.
If you are interested in following a highly engaged expert on ecommerce, and inbound marketing, we have no problem “recommending” @Mallikarjunan as an account to follow.
And if you would like to learn more about how marketers can use Net Promoter, click here to read the full interview with Fred Reichheld.
Amex swipes employee churn with Net Promoter
Net Promoter buffs may know that American Express implemented a Net Promoter system way back in 2006, and real tragics may even be aware that the company sees a 10% to 15% increase in spending and four to five times increased retention from its Promoters.
But what is less well known is the positive benefits the organisation is seeing on employee retention and engagement. Notes Jim Bush, executive veep (world service), the organisation compensates according to two outcomes: Customer satisfaction, and operating margin. This approach has helped drive down employee turnover and helped the organisation contain costs associated with service operations.
Not coincidentally, according to the Financial Times, “As of May 2013, the consensus forecast among 26 polled investment analysts covering American Express Company advises that the company will continue to outperform the market. This has been the consensus forecast since 2009.” Business Standard
- According to a review of the latest Nokia Lumia, “owners who had opted for the previous striking red and yellow models rated the device more highly [with Net Promoter] than those who had chosen plainer colours.” The Register
- Financial tech biz Direct Capital has announced that its NPS has reached +65, versus “a financial industry average of +23.” The announcement is interesting because the high NPS correlates with a 2012, and is in the top five independent vendor finance company in overall organic growth, according to Monitor. Press release
- IT Services biz OneNeck® has announced its Application Management Division has recorded an NPS of 79, based on a recent DIY Net Promoter survey. Press release
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Net Promoter News: Holiday Blues, in-app NPS is HERE, IT innovators put care back in to healthcare, SafeMart calls every customer
Thomson Holiday Blues
We normally use this space to talk about companies that are improving their customer service offerings, but this week it’s a customer service fail that’s making headlines in the UK.
After spending several thousand pounds on a trip to Mexico with UK travel operators Thomson, Briton Gemma Fish was extremely disappointed with a below par hotel room, and made a complaint to the travel company. She was moved to a new room, and although it was still short of what she expected, the holiday was not a complete disaster. But a month later, Fish received a series of abusive emails from Thomson including a (probably, in retrospect, sound) suggestion to “shut the **** up and book with Thomas Cook.”
Unfortunately for Thomson, the emails were soon making headlines in everything from the trade press to the Telegraph, and the Twittersphere lit up with the sounds of a thousand potential customers sharing their negative impressions of the company with their friends and followers. Among the ruckus, on Twitter @KevParker said: “Shockin customer service by Thomson Travel Agents. Reasons like this why I always book with @KuoniTravelUK.”
@KevParker’s tweet interested us – we know of travel companies that have implemented Net Promoter customer feedback systems that pay significant dividends in terms of improving customer satisfaction and driving innovation (TravelCounsellers and others), and we believe this would not have happened in those customer focused organisations.
Though it is not a stranger to customer service PR disasters, a spokesperson gave the usual line that “Customer service is of paramount importance to Thomson.” However, we’d like to cheekily (but seriously) suggest that if Thomson is indeed determined to pick up its customer service act, being inspired by Net Promoter companies like Kuoni and Travel Counseller’s lead may be a start. Daily Mail
IT innovators put care back in to healthcare
According to Dave Chase (boss of Avado, a business that has created a cloud-based patient management system) , doctors spend far too much time dealing with insurance companies, and time and expenses related to these processes mean that patients end up spending more on healthcare than they should.
However, thanks to a small group of disruptive trailblazers in the IT industry, costs associated with insurance will soon be slashed, and with them the overall costs of healthcare will drop for patients. Chase cites healthcare management startup Qliance as one of these businesses. Not only does Qliance’s product reduce the direct costs of healthcare by 20-40%, it has a very high level of satisfaction among its customers (reflected in its NPS). If the future of healthcare is more on patient care and less on patient paperwork, we like what we see. Forbes
In-App NPS is HERE
Apple recently endured criticism for its new mapping application in the latest release of iOS 6 for the iPad and iPhone, even prompting CEO Tim Cook to apologise and say “other apps are available”. One of those mapping apps is HERE by Nokia, which was the first, and is also handily free, a price that is attractive to this reporter, and prompted installation on an iPhone 4S.
While the mapping itself seems efficient, our eyes were drawn to the invitingly bold “Feedback” button, which produced a familiar looking survey scale when pushed. In fact, credit to Nokia, who have turned out a creditable one-page Net Promoter survey embedded in their app. Seems you can only give feedback once a day, and there is no notification or reply back from the survey – however good to Nokia continuing their commitment to NPS (Net Promoter News passim).
It does look remarkably similar to the new CustomerGauge mobile survey, available on iPhone and Android. So perhaps Nokia were inspired by our previous work… We’ll put this down to imitation/flattery etc. Explore the CustomerGauge survey here (view on mobile device to see what we mean)
SafeMart calls every customer, boasts a perfect 100
US home security specialist SafeMart has the distinction of being the first company reported on this year by Net Promoter News to claim a perfect NPS – that’s right folks, a score of +100.
While SafeMart appears to be a relatively small company and may have conducted the research internally (and indeed, sample sizes and methodology are absent from the release and online as far as we can see), one thing to note from the announcement is that the company claims it calls every single customer after a new sale or activation, just to ask for feedback and how they can improve. This process has apparently led to “major process improvements” that have boosted both loyalty and referrals. Melodika.net
- Princess Alexandra Hospital Trust has recorded the lowest score yet by any organisation on the UK’s Net Promoter-based friends and family test for the National Health Service (NHS). It has placed last for the last two months, despite being in the top five performing trusts for the first four months, leading to yet more questions about the soundness of the survey methodology. HSJ (paywall)
- Laser printer group Bradshaw has announced a self-reported NPS of +67. Bradshaw blog
Net Promoter News: Israelis like to drink (Leffe) and drive (Honda), Over 40% of Sky Germany purchases made on recommendations, SingTel sings customer-centricity, Nokia Music tunes in new features
Israelis like to drink (Leffe) and drive (Honda)
Annual Net Promoter-based research by TheMarker Magazine in Israel has found that Honda is the most advocated brand in the country, followed by Belgian beer Leffe, Mueller yogurt, Yotvata milk and Tuborg beer (Israelis are quite fond of beer and dairy, it seems:). International brands with fast rising levels of advocacy include Ikea and AIG Insurance.
The results of this year’s survey are interesting because they contrast quite dramatically with 2011. Last year in Israel, there was a widespread public backlash against the cost of living, and this sentiment was so deeply felt that according to TheMarker Magazine’s 2011 survey, the number of people willing to recommend brands dropped significantly across nearly every category.
For businesses that focus too much on the score, this would have been a moment to panic, wonder what they are doing wrong, and perhaps start to question the validity of Net Promoter and throw in the proverbial towel on the whole idea. But that would have been a mistake. This year, advocacy levels have returned to levels similar to 2010 – and in some cases even exceeded them.
This highlights an important lesson in terms of using Net Promoter. Implemented effectively, your score should move in a positive direction over time. However, it is important to remember that there are an enormous amount of factors that can cause short term volatility in your score – and not all of them are under your control. L’Chayim! Haaretz (paywall)
Sky-high: Over 40% of Sky Germany purchases made on recommendations
Over the past year, we have reported on a number of businesses that show a correlation between Net Promoter Scores and improvements in the bottom line.
Although there is evidence to suggest that higher NPS correlates with stronger growth when compared to a company’s competitors, unfortunately correlation does not equal causation. So for that reason, we were extremely interested in to hear Sky Deutschland’s Euan Smith tell a recent media conference on TV user interfaces that “well over 40% of all Sky purchases are now made on the basis of recommendations from friends.” (emphasis added)
We’re curious: Do you know of any businesses for which recommendations account for more than 40% of all purchases? Rapid TV News
SingTel sings customer-centricity
Singaporean telecom giant SingTel is rolling out a rebranding initiative that will be measured in part by Net Promoter, and will focus on service quality, communication with customers, and more unique content.
For customer service junkies, it is interesting to note also that SingTel’s top 1,000 executives in its consumer segment have spent at least a day with customer-facing staff, and CEO Chua Sock Koong has even been listening in on customer service calls (gulp). Asia One
Nokia Music tunes in new features on Net Promoter feedback
Nokia continues to assert its high NPS for Lumia smartphones and the benefits it is getting from Net Promoter. This week a spokesperson said that based on Net Promoter feedback, Nokia Music is introducing features including the awkwardly-named “Searchable Gig Finder” that finds gigs by artist, venue, or name. Sounds cool, but with all these snippets of information being released about Nokia’s Net Promoter program, we’re ever so curious for more details!! (Or perhaps that is the whole idea?) Noknok.tv
- In its earnings report, ING mentioned ING Belgium’s mobile ‘app’ has boosted the bank’s NPS and that ING Insurance has used Net Promoter insights to make process improvements. ING.com
Net Promoter Score / Customer Research Manager, Henry Nicholas Associates, Bristol, UK.
Net Promoter News: Qantas customer sat hits surprising altitude, ex-Junker Michel Falcon on Net Promoter, Genpact’s NPS highs, Indianapolis residents cool on Public Schools
Qantas customer satisfaction hits surprising altitude
Qantas has claimed that this year, on a scale of 0-10, its international service has recorded a “customer satisfaction score” over 7.9 every month (note – the article seems to imply the customer satisfaction score is based on Net Promoter, but we’re not exactly sure). The company also said that at the height of the industrial relations dispute that saw its aircraft around the world grounded last year, Qantas’s international arm was recording a customer satisfaction score of 7.7.
While we’re not exactly sure of the methodology, considering the thousands of people whose flights were cancelled in the industrial relations dispute in 2011, and more anecdotally a nasty social media backlash to a marketing campaign a couple of months later, these levels of satisfaction seem to be surprisingly high. (This less than dramatic 0.2 movement seems to be pretty typical for Cust Sat type programs, which usually hover around the 7.5 average mark. In our opinion, this is one of the very good points in favour of using the NPS -100 to 100 scale – Ed). Sydney Morning Herald
Ex-1-800 GOT JUNKie Michel Falcon on how to use Net Promoter
Michel Falcon helped implement the Net Promoter program at 1-800 Got Junk, and has written an interesting post on the two types of organisations that use Net Promoter.
In his experience, the first way is to focus entirely on the score, and get discouraged when it decreases and (overly) enthusiastic when it increases. The second type balances the score and the comments, and takes steps to ensure that the entire organisation rallies around Net Promoter. Needless to say, this is the way that Net Promoter should be implemented. And we particularly like his closing quote: “I’ve always said, the score is for the score board, where the comments are for the playbook. What type of organisation are you?” MichelFalcon.com
Genpact zooms to NPS highs
In its Q3 2012 results, Genpact announced improved revenues and client satisfaction levels at historic highs, and noted that its NPS has improved almost 50% in five years. CEO N. V. Tyagarajan gave an example of how focusing on customer satisfaction via NPS with one particular client had helped grow that relationship from one single service line several years ago, to multiple areas today. Seeking Alpha
Indianapolis residents too cool for (Public) Schools
In a survey of 7,000, residents have given the Indianapolis Public Schools system an NPS of -24. However, the survey implementation has drawn its own criticism, with the district superintendent saying the survey sample included numerous people with no connection to the school system other than living in the district. Indianapolis Business Journal
- Nokia has once again hinted at a high NPS for its Lumia range. This time, Marketing Director for Nokia UK & Ireland, James Kitto, said “Nokia Lumia experiences, namely in terms of design, build quality and colour, as well as innovative software such as Maps and navigation and Nokia Music with free Mix Radio streaming are driving very high levels of satisfaction (Net Promoter Score).” NokNok
- Direct digital manufacturer RedEye On Demand, has announced monthly Net Promoter Scores over +70 for four months in a row. Herald Online
- In its fiscal year 2013 Q1 earnings call, Vistaprint has announced “positive indicators in all regions, such as strong new customer acquisition and improved net promoter scores.” Bloomberg
- Fuelcard Keyfuels has been given an ‘Excellent’ rating for customer service by the Customer Service Network. Its NPS has increased by nearly 15% in the last 12 months. BDaily
Net Promoter Vacancies
Customer Experience Analyst – Net Promoter Score, Automatic Data Processing, Alpharetta, Georgia.
Net Promoter Score Business Analyst, Telstra, Melbourne.
Head of Customer Service, e-Experience, West London
Net Promoter News: You Can Be Sure of Shell Customer Service, Android NPS blues but iOS in pink, Transactional Net Promoter Score is “Need To Know Buzzword”
Shell puts customer service in the fast lane
Shell in the Netherlands has launched an intriguing campaign to find out what its customers think about its service via dedicated mobile apps for iOS and Android.
As spotted by CustomerGauge staffer Chris, the pilot campaign runs across 14 stations, and the app allows customers let Shell know what they like about the Shell filling stations and what could be improved.
In addition, the stations have a device at the entrance where customers can select an appropriately happy, sad, or indifferent face depending on their experience.
It’s a simple initiative, and if we have one small suggestion it may be to include a mechanism to give feedback in-store as well as online. Shell Netherlands (in Dutch)
Android wallows in NPS purgatory, but will Apple continue to dominate?
Like a televised cage fight, consumers are watching battles by Android v iOS, Microsoft v anyone, Samsung against Apple, Nokia and Blackberry begging to be let back in. As smartphones march toward ubiquity, predicting where each of the major players will be in a year’s time is complicated by the fact that it is not just handset against handset, but also operating system against operating system, and even carrier against carrier.
New research in the US has found that:
- iOS is the most preferred operating system among IT professionals, with a Net Promoter Score of 69, well ahead of Android at 27.
- AT&T and Verizon are equally preferred carriers among IT professionals, with Sprint a distant third.
The low score for Android may be surprising for some, but it does seem to have some correlation with an earlier prediction that we reported on by analyst Ben Bajarin, who believes that partly based on Windows’ high NPS, iOS and potentially Windows will be the longer term operating system winners.
However, this is complicated by a number of factors, including Samsung’s momentum. Predicting the state of the mobile market in the medium term is best left to those more knowledgeable, but we are watching this space with interest. Red Orbit
Transactional Net Promoter Score dubbed “need to know buzzword”
MarketingWeek UK has named Transactional Net Promoter Score to its list of “need to know buzzwords in 2012.”
While we’re bemused with the idea of Transactional Net Promoter Scores being thought of as just another buzzword, the article makes some good points on the strengths of the metric and how it differs from regular Net Promoter surveys.
One of the more important considerations is that transactional surveys can potentially provide a much bigger data set than conventional surveys, as they ask for a response at the moment of contact, rather than once every quarter or other predefined period. For businesses that don’t often see customers face to face, such as insurance, Transactional Net Promoter Scores can also offer an opportunity to resolve a customer’s problem immediately.
Please check out this link if you’re interested in reading more about transactional surveys and how they have helped CustomerGauge clients, including insurance business nib, branded manufacturer Melitta, and more. Marketing Week
- Wonga, the financial services business that announced an NPS of +73 in May, this week announced it has trebled its earnings, with income rising 225%. The Guardian
- Recent research in the UK has revealed that “only 14% of service organisations have a system in place that accurately and automatically scores employees on performance in customer service.” For more insights into the state of customer service (or lack thereof) in UK businesses, see HR Magazine.
Net Promoter Vacancies
User Experience Manager – North America: LEGO, Hartford CT, US
Net Promoter Systems Analyst: Aerotek - Parsippany, New Jersey
Net Promoter News: Jet Blue does NPS b2e, NPS holds up in HBR, Nokia claims high NPS…. again – and have you been “Phliked” on Facebook?
Jet Blue uses Net Promoter to measure employee engagement
Net Promoter is generally considered as a metric to measure customer advocacy and satisfaction, but in fact, it is also a valuable metric to survey employee satisfaction.
Jet Blue (in collaboration with consultants HCMI) is one recent company that has done just this – using Net Promoter to test how likely employees are to recommend working for the airline.
The logic is simple. Highly-engaged employees translates into higher Net Promoter scores by customers, so in order to improve engagement across its workforce, Net Promoter was adopted in combination with other metrics to identify areas where employee engagement was lagging and implement HR initiatives to improve it.
Following successful results, the airline surveys its employees continuously on their employee anniversaries. This gives the company an ongoing insight into employee advocacy and helps leadership develop and implement strategic solutions to improving training and other management decisions that ultimately have a positive impact on the bottom line.
We have discussed elsewhere that too often employees are a forgotten cornerstone of customer advocacy, so it’s fantastic to see a business of the caliber of Jet Blue use Net Promoter to proactively address employee satisfaction. Workforce
[NB. We at CustomerGauge also measure this business-to-employee metric. We give it the snappy acronym B2e.]
Harvard Business Review validates Net Promoter
In order to assess which is the single best customer satisfaction question between Customer Satisfaction (sometimes called CSAT), Net Promoter Score (NPS), and Customer Effort Score, researchers Matthew Dixon, Karen Freeman, and Nicholas Toman analysed 10,000 responses from 100 companies to see how results predicted customer loyalty levels, with results published in Harvard Business Review.
The results were widely different – the authors attribute this to survey bias – but they did conclude that Customer Satisfaction is not the best predictor of expenditure, while NPS is “clearly a good predictor of the individual customer’s attitudes”.
One more tidbit to note from the post – in the comments below the article Customer Effort Score co-founder Nick Toman states “CES was developed purely as a post-service transactional loyalty metric. In no way, shape or form would we advise this be used to examine broader relationship loyalty.” Harvard Business Review
Nokia Lumia 900: Hot or not?
It’s a case of “another product release, another high Net Promoter score” for Nokia. According to the company, a survey in conjunction with Nielsen has given the new Lumia 900 a Net Promoter score of +63. This follows on from Nokia reporting its Asha range and Lumia 800 both scored extremely highly with Net Promoter.
But according to another source, users do not have such a rosy view of the new handset. A survey by Yankee Group with a sample size of 111 returned an NPS of -50.
This massive difference has us scratching our heads, so we did a quick scan of reviews to see what professional opinion-givers say. Crave Online, CNet, and techradar all give the thumbs up, leaving us to wonder – why were the respondents in the Yankee Group survey so low?
In brief: NextUC and PEER 1 claim growth, strong NPSs
- Cloud-based communications provider NextUC claimed a Net Promoter Score of +30 which it says is tracking up from the month earlier.
- Web hoster PEER 1 has claimed an NPS of +36 after growing nearly 100% in the last year.
And Finally… Have you been “Phliked”on Facebook?
Measuring customer advocacy across social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter is an emerging trend in our industry, but one that has yet to convince us as being equal in value to surveying customers with Net Promoter.
Among other things, sentiment on social media platforms is unstructured and unrepresentative, and while monitoring social conversations is definitely important, it is a reactive rather than proactive way of listening to customer feedback. We could go on, but you get the picture.
Now another story emerged to muddy the waters of hyped “social media measuring” products. Earlier this year Facebook itself announced that 5-6% of its 900 million users may be fake – that’s around 50 million profiles. And this week the BBC ran a story on scam profiles set up by robot computer programs or low-paid spammers in developing countries that inflate the number of “Likes” on Facebook.
For those in the know, the phrase du jour is “Phoney-Like” hence “Phlike” – as in “How many “Phlikes” have you got?”
Do you think Facebook “Phlikes” are an issue? Let us know! Source: BBC
Net Promoter News: AmEx cashes in, Apple’s in-store asker, Nokia talks up Asha’s NPS, SoDA pops 51 plus NPS Everywhere
American Express: Tracking Net Promoter all the way to shareholder value
A fascinating interview this week with Jim Bush, EVP of world service at American Express outlines how the company has used Net Promoter to propel it to the leading position for financial services brands in terms of customer service in the US, and how the company is tracking its Net Promoter improvement all the way to its shareholder value.
Among the insights:
- In the past, 75% of customer service training was on how a transaction was completed technically. Now, training focuses on how to create the relationship and build it through humanity, conversation, and engagement,
- No scripts. When a customer calls American Express, the Customer Service professional is presented with a customer profile and other relevant information. This allows the care professional to leverage the power of their personality to build a human relationship suited to the particular customer.
- The company sees a 10% to 15% increase in spending and four to five times increased retention from promoters. In addition, due to streamlining, operating expenses associated with service have been reduced. And even better, since the height of the financial crisis, the company’s stock has considerably outperformed the industry’s index.
Finally, a personal reflection by Jim Bush on his time in the role offered some interesting insights into what motivates a market-beating customer service professional. As with many people, he initially thought of customer service as a back-office operation. But as he considered the millions of interactions the company has with customers, he realized the following truth; “If we can unleash the power of that customer-facing organization, think of the value we can create.”
Not just for your customer, but for your bottom line! CNN Money
Steve Jobs on Customer Service
Steve Jobs famously once said “It is not the customer’s job to know what they want.”
But despite a significant number of punters taking this to mean that Apple doesn’t focus on what customers think, the brand actually uses Net Promoter to track customer sentiment very closely. A Business Standard article this week touches on how Apple uses Net Promoter to fine tune customer service in-store, noting that when customers make a purchase they receive an electronic receipt and sometimes a Net Promoter survey. Any negative responses are followed up by store managers, and results are aggregated and share internally. Customer service is not the reason the brand creates category-defining devices again and again. But it does take customer care extremely serious.
The article also mentions LEGO Group – which collects scores across both online and offline customer service touchpoints. Scores are distributed through the company monthly, and follow-ups are made on all negative responses. Since 2005, scores have improved 26 per cent. Business Standard
Nokia gives earning call, reiterates Asha NPS
In brief: Yesterday Nokia gave its Q1 2012 earnings call, and once again mentioned that its range of Asha smartphones has the highest Net Promoter Scores for any of the company’s mobile phone products. According to CEO Stephen Elop, this was due to the fact that Nokia “delivered consumers more aspirational designs and experiences.”
This may be so, but will it be enough to put a dent in Android sales, let alone Apple? It’s something we’re keeping a close eye on, so stay tuned! Seeking Alpha
SoDA gets Net Promoter Score, claims Outstanding Member Satisfaction
Another non-profit group has adopted Net Promoter as an important metric according to a Virtual Strategy. The Society of Digital Agencies (SoDA) announced in a PR bragger their recent 51% Net Promoter Score, with 60% respondents falling into “Promoter” category. Chris Buettner, SoDA Director of Operations said he was pleased with the results, but was not complacent, and wanted to evolve the programs based on the results. Virtual Strategy
Net Promoter now available Everywhere says CustomerGauge
“These days, everyone is responsible for customer experience” says a senior Electrolux executive, “It’s not just the property of the research department or a customer service team”. Responding to challenges like this has resulted in the new platform from CustomerGauge who this week announced their “Everywhere” Net Promoter® solution, delivering customer feedback and scores to everyone in the organisation, on desktop and ipad devices.
Comments are delivered in real-time, with the screen updating as customers respond. New features include performance boost with a claimed one million records graphed in around a second, more ways of slicing and dicing data, and language options with German and Italian available already. Wilkommen, Benvenuto! CustomerGauge
Net Promoter News: Safelite breaks NPS glass ceiling, Overstocks over 60, Android losing NPS battle, B2B Comp in the swingin’ 60s
Safelite Solutions smashes automotive glass ceiling.
The automotive glass repair and replacement industry may not immediately spring to mind when one thinks of industries that attract high Net Promoter Scores, as these are normally reserved for those that elicit strong emotional bonds from consumers – such as some food products or glamorous consumer tech.
But this week in the US, Tom Reid of Safelite Solutions proved the “glass ceiling” could be broken when he announced that his company not only has a Net Promoter Score in the mid-80s, but that they are continually striving for improvement.
We liked the fact that Reid also honoured five franchisees with scores of 90 and above. And we were equally impressed by the company’s survey response rate – approximately 40%. (CustomerGauge Factfans: Mr Reid went on to say the survey was done by email from the 60% of customers that leave an email address, with a 40% response rate, so they have an NPS score based on a total 24% response of ALL customers. Pretty much in line with CustomerGauge stats – Ed)
Some industries may be predisposed to getting higher average Net Promoter Scores than others, it’s always great to hear about a company that doesn’t just buck the trend, but breaks preconceptions as well. Congratulations Safelite! Source: The splendidly named GlassBytes
Overstock.com stocks up on customer satisfaction
Over five years ago, technology-based retail company Overstock.com aimed to increase customer satisfaction levels and put a brake on contact centre costs. As part of that effort, the company turned to cloud-based contact center solution Echopass for a new cloud-based solution.
Since then, Overstock.com’s post-incident Net Promoter Score has improved to over +60. The company attributes this particularly to enhanced agent training, monitoring, and compliance, which it says are capabilities provided by a fully capable quality management and call recording solution.
But we found two things particularly interesting about this story – the first that the collaboration between Overstock.com and Echopass seems to have been instrumental in Overstock.com’s customer service improvement, and the second that the companies reported on this successful collaboration only after five years of (presumably) hard work.
The message here is that there is no silver bullet to continually delighting customers. Even with (or maybe because of) today’s dizzying array of tech tools that all seem to promise more and better results, pleasing customers is more often the result of putting in consistent, concerted effort over a considerable period of time. MarketWatch
Datamart scores sky-high NPS, but we have no idea why
Net Promoter is a metric designed to measure customer advocacy and give businesses the insights to become truly customer-centric. Of itself, it does not predict business performance, though there is often a correlation between Net Promoter Scores and business momentum.
So when a business reports that it has a Net Promoter Score of +93, our first reaction is “Wow, that’s phenomenal!”. Our second reaction is to ask questions:
- How is the business performing?
- If Net Promoter has been used over some time, how do the latest scores compare with previous scores?
- What customer service insights and innovations can you share?
- What is the average NPS for your industry?
- Who did the research?
- How many people were surveyed?
This week, Datamart, a New England company that designs, installs, and supports communications systems, featuring call centers, video conferencing, and VOIP (voice-over-internet protocol) announced a phenomenal score of +93. The self-puffer says that the company is “using the data collected to guide Datamart into a promising second half to their fiscal year,” (gosh, I hope so).
But absent from the release is any information about the above questions. Instead, there is simply an explanation about what NPS is and an announcement of this amazing score.
Datamart: We wanted to talk about your fantastic service. We wanted to quote your delighted customers. We wanted to share information about your customer service innovations. But instead, we’re left with a blank space where that information should be. Your riposte is welcomed. PR Web
Windows in, Android out?
Last week, we talked about the Nokia Lumia 800 and the fact its Net Promoter Score is the highest recorded for any Nokia mobile device. We speculated that based on reviews and the fact the company does not appear to have actually publicized the mobile’s score, it may be somewhat less than the iPhone and leading Android phones.
Analyst Ben Bajarin weighed into the debate this week with some bold predictions of his own. Based partly on Nokia Lumia’s high Net Promoter Score and his analysis of Android, he believes there is an operating system shift taking place – with “iOS for sure and potentially Windows Phone are the longer term winners.” Tech.pinions
B2B Computer Products: Expanding fast, with NPS to match
B2B Computer Products is a provider of technology products and services. This week, ShorTel, a provider of IP unified communications solutions, announced that B2B Computer Products scored an NPS of +67 for the 9-month period spanning July 2011 – March 2012.
According to the company, B2B Computer is consistently identified by Inc. magazine as one of the fastest growing companies in the U.S. and by Crain’s as one of the fastest growing privately held companies in the Chicago metro area.
We mentioned above that there is often a correlation between Net Promoter Scores and business momentum – and in the case of B2B Computer Products, that correlation certainly appears strong! San Francisco Chronicle
Net Promoter News: NPS beats Nokia Sales KPI, Kaiser Permanente is health leader with Aetna the ‘wannabe’, Kodak Gallery clicks with users.
Nokia takes NPS as KPI for Lumia 800
A few weeks back we reported on Nokia and how a campaign in Mexico and Indonesia to launch its range of Asha phones led to Nokia’s Net Promoter Score increasing to its “highest ever level” in these regions.
This week at the Credit Suisse Group Technology Conference, the company discussed its plans for the Nokia Lumia 800, which is a key part of its growth strategy.
According to CFO Timo Ihamuotila, the company has adopted Net Promoter as the most important KPI for this phone, and at this point, it has the highest Net Promoter Score of any Nokia device launched.
For interest’s sake, we took a look at a couple of Lumia 800 reviews just to see if customers and hacks are on the same wavelength when it comes to how satisfied they are with the product. Engadget, CNet and TechRadar seem to agree it’s a pretty good phone – in some ways very good. So far, so good.
In the presentation, the company did not give specific scores, so if we presume that reviewers and consumers share roughly similar sentiments toward the phone, it’s probably a safe bet that in terms of NPS the Lumia 800 still trails the iPhone and leading Android devices by some degree, despite its high scores compared to other Nokia devices.
As to whether that’s enough to turn around Nokia’s momentum, we’ll have to wait and see! Seeking Alpha
Kaiser Permanente – the health insurer that could….
Last week we briefly mentioned that major US health insurers were viewed poorly by many customers. According to recent Net Promoter research, the average score for health insurers is +4, which compares unfavorably with more glamourous sectors such as tech (Google +56, Apple +68) or travel and hospitality (Virgin America +66, JetBlue Airways +64).
But is this really a fair comparison? For starters, health insurance is a utility. Like banks, which had similarly low Net Promoter scores, people need insurance, but needing something doesn’t necessarily mean that emotional engagement follows. Furthermore, the chances of a customer relationship with a health insurer souring are significant – if someone has a claim rejected they can have a strong negative reaction to their insurance provider, whereas approved claims may often be considered basic service.
So based on these factors, would it be reasonable to assume that health insurers should not aim for Net Promoter Scores similar to that of a JetBlue or Apple?
Not so fast. There was one outlier in the research – Kaiser Permanente, which scored +33. According to the article below, this is down to two key reasons – one being that Kaiser delivers health services, rather than simply a health plan, and two that it leaves competitors in the dust when it comes to providing the right customer service when people need help.
Hopefully, leaders such as Kaiser Permanente will help other insurers, banks, and telecoms to develop out-of-the-box strategies to put customer-centricity at the core of what they do. And who knows, maybe someday we’ll see a Kaiser beat an Apple. Insurance Networking News
.…and Aetna – the health insurer that wants to
So Kaiser Permanente leads major health insurers for the moment. Aetna is one of the worst-performing , with a measly NPS of -11. But according to one pundit, Aetna is on the path to making up at least some of its lost ground.
In articles across several publications, Dave Chase, CEO of patient portal & relationship management company Avado.com, argues that the company poised for a “remarkable reinvention,” reminiscent of the turnaround engineered at IBM by Lou Gerstner in the 1990s. He cites four key insights driving the coming turnaround. Of most interest to advocates of building customer-centric business such as ourselves is insight number two:
“Simply going through traditional channels of employers and providers won’t allow them to reach all of their target market. They have to create new pathways to the ultimate consumer. For a bunch of reasons, healthcare is becoming a more consumer-driven market so they must build or acquire that skillset.”
While we might argue that insurers who had earlier recognized healthcare as a consumer-driven market might already be sporting an NPS of the likes of Kaiser Permanente, we won’t quibble with the sentiment that American health insurers would be well-advised lose their lumbering dinosaur mentality and get their customer service act together, pronto. Forbes, TechCrunch
Kodak Gallery captures more than Kodak moments
More than 75 million people worldwide manage, share and create photo gifts online at Kodak Gallery, and based on the imaging innovator’s recent customer satisfaction and Net Promoter scores, it would be a shame if Kodak’s recent financial woes prevented it from growing in the way it deserves to.
This week, the company announced a year-on-year customer satisfaction increase of 30% and Net Promoter Score (NPS) increase of 57%, which it attributes to acting on issues that were uncovered by cross-channel investigation.
The most significant of these was a surprisingly simple change. Visitors wanted to be able to download photos from members – no surprises there – but because the option was disabled by default, many visitors weren’t aware it existed. This was also reflected in customer service analysis, as there were a significant number of questions about how to enable the feature.
According to the press release, changing the default setting saw a whopping NPS increase of 33%.
Remember, folks, sometimes it’s the little things in life that make all the difference. Food and Drink Digital
Net Promoter News: Nokia plots its comeback, V-Rooms accelerates customer service, Genroe organises CustomerGauge meetup, Social business needs a metric, Best of Staffing Awards integrate NPS
Nokia takes note of NPS, plots its comeback
The direction of Nokia has been the topic of a great deal of speculation over the past few years as the company’s fortunes have tumbled in developed markets following the rise of the iPhone and various Android phones. However, it is easy to overlook the fact that the company is relatively stronger in emerging markets and among price-sensitive consumers.
In fact, the company noted at the opening of the World Mobile Congress this week that a campaign in Mexico and Indonesia to launch its range of Asha phones led to Nokia’s Net Promoter Score increasing* to its “highest ever level” in these regions. Based on this success, the company is now considering rolling out successful campaigns from developing markets to developed markets, rather than the more traditional opposite approach.
If it wants to regain its position as a preeminent mobile player in developed markets, Nokia certainly has its work cut out for it. But if it can replicate its high NPS, it will be very interesting to see whether it can start to make inroads into the smartphone market against heavyweights such as Apple and Samsung. Stay tuned for what could be a long battle (on your mobile, of course)! Marketing Week
[*editors carping note: NPS on Nokia product, or on the campaign itself? To be honest, we're not sure... If on the campaign, it's "trebles all round" for the ad-men, but pretty meaningless for Nokia success... Reminds us of a marketing meeting we attended a year ago with a well known consumer brand that had perhaps gone a bit too far on measuring Net Promoter - they were presenting in earnest the survey results of the question: "Would you recommend this email marketing message to a friend or family member?". As if that would really make a difference to customer loyalty...]
V-Rooms accelerates customer service, writes fantastic press release to prove it
A few weeks ago we discussed Atlanta-based virtual data room company V-Rooms, and its “A+ Net Promoter Score,” which left us wanting to be impressed but instead slightly confused.
While we still aren’t 100% sure what an A+ Net Promoter Score is, the latest self-puffer outlines with admirable detail exactly how seriously the company takes customer service – and this time, we are impressed.
The headline – “V-Rooms Increases Customer Service Staff by 25%” – is a promising start. But further reading reveals a company that is not only telling their customers how much they value them and outlining the clear steps they are taking to maintain and improve their customer service, but also highlighting this strength as a clear point of differentiation with their competitors. Check out these quotes:
- “At a time when many of our competitors are trying to cut costs by delivering the least amount of human connection, we are expanding our customer service staff.” (Dan Bradbary, CEO)
- “Unlike a lot of the other providers in the virtual data room space, our customers have the option to pay on a month-to-month basis.” (Karen Perkins, President)
- “Because we treat our customers well, they stick around. We give our customers the freedom to leave, they just don’t want to.” (Karen Perkins)
- And finally: “If the lifeblood of an organization is its customer service, then V-Rooms Virtual Data Rooms is already very healthy having recently achieved an A+ rating on their Net Promoter Score Survey.”
What’s an A+ Net Promoter Score? I’m too busy swooning to care! PR Web
Genroe organises CustomerGauge Australia meetup
If you’re a CustomerGauge user in Australia, keep March 15th open. Genroe, CustomerGauge’s Australian partner, is arranging a meetup to exchange Net Promoter information, product tips and best practices. And as Genroe notes on their blog, since there are not yet any competitive overlaps in the Australian CustomerGauge user community, there should be little problem in sharing great ideas with one another.
We’ll be supporting the event from Netherlands HQ, and look forward to hearing about how it goes! For complete details including a program and contacts, please check out Genroe’s site .
Social business needs a measurement metric
With the rise in social as a medium for brand communications, one of the big trends in the last couple of years has been social business, which global MD of Social@Ogilvy John Bell defines as “producing business value from social behaviour.” In a recent post for PR Week, he outlines three clear steps a business should lay out in order to develop a successful social business strategy.
The third step is to establish a measurement model, and nothing, he notes, breeds strategy like a common evaluation criteria. Though he is careful not to give a blanket statement on how a business should measure its social business, he mentions “you may decide to focus on relationship marketing versus advertising or because you believe in the strength of the Net Promoter Score.”
To which we’d like to add one small note: Social metrics are now a dime a dozen, but few are as clear or proven as Net Promoter. PR Week US
Best of Staffing Awards integrate NPS
There are currently around 13 million people unemployed in the US – a sobering statistic that we hope will change for the better sooner rather than later. And while it is only a part of the solution, the 2.5 million strong recruitment industry is helping to connect at least some of these people with new employers.
With that in mind, Portland-based research firm Inavero has released its annual Best of Staffing lists. In order to make the company’s Best of Staffing Client and Best of Staffing Talent lists, firms were required to attain a Net Promoter Score of +55, nearly double the industry average – with less than 1% of firms making the cut. This week the internet is awash with firms promoting their recognition, but for a full list you can check out the link below. Best of Staffing
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