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Net Promoter News: Subaru drives most recommendation at 57, KIA coming fast at 18, Detroit's finest get a flat; Entrasys services 81; V-Rooms nix score, award themselves A+

[caption id="attachment_2409" align="alignnone" width="550" caption="Subaru focuses on the experience"]Screen-Shot-2012-02-03-at-1.08.37-PM-550x221.png[/caption]

Subaru in fast lane, KIA revs its NPS engine

Consumer-centric information portal has unveiled the results of a January survey of 9,317 consumers in the US that identifies which automotive brands enjoy the highest level of customer advocacy. It found the top five are Subaru, Toyota and Honda, Lexus and Volkswagen, in that order.

Did you notice what’s missing? That’s right – there is no US brand in the top five. BIGinsight notes that though GMC and Ford have improved since 2010, they remain considerably lower than their international counterparts. Is that the distant sound of nails being hammered in to the coffin of the US automotive industry?

Digging a little deeper into the research offers more insights. Among the top five, Volkswagen showed the greatest jump since 2010. Subaru’s NPS has also risen, and Toyota appears to be rebuilding trust following much-publicised recalls from 2009-2011. However, Lexus has stalled.

Last but not least, one automotive brand experienced a jump of 500% in their NPS from 2010 to 2012 – KIA - although not in the top five is coming fast, going from  2.8% in 2010 to 18.1% in 2012. Maybe it’s time to invest in KIA shares…. Full story San Francisco Chronicle

Top 5 Auto Net Promoter Scores (Ranked by JAN 2012 Score)
Subaru 56.8%
Toyota  48.9%
Honda 43.9%
Lexus 43.2%
Volkswagen  40.7%
Detroit (US) Auto makers:
GMC  27.9%
Cadillac 19.8%
Ford  15.7%
Chevrolet  12.3%
Buick  6.2%
Chrysler 0.3%

NPS for Usability

At a time when smartphones, tablets, and assorted tech gadgets are being upgraded almost weekly, usability has become a serious issue for many consumers beyond the bleeding edge of early adopters and tech-minded geeks. With this in mind, the gurus at FastCo Design recently suggested creating a metric for usability based on NPS.

Before we go much further, we firmly believe that NPS works because it is about the entire ownership experience. And would like to point out that if a customer is indeed a advocate of your product, chances are they are already quite comfortable with its usability. By way of evidence, last week we reported on the 10 most advocated brands in the UK. Two of these are from Apple (iPhone and iPod) – a tech brand that is the market leader at creating breakthrough products that are both user-friendly and incorporate cutting-edge technology.

Having said this, columnist and designer Roderick McMullen notes that though companies may believe deeply in the power of usability, most probably aren’t measuring it or making it a key part of their strategy. And that is why he suggests adapting NPS to usability.

After considering carefully the most succinct way to frame a question on usability, he suggests the following: “On a scale of 1-10, How confident are you using this system/product/service?”

And voila, he produces a Net Usability Score! But hey, Roderick, NPS starts at 0, not 1! FastCo Design

[caption id="attachment_2410" align="alignnone" width="550" caption="Enterasys's website: "There is nothing more important than our customers""]Screen-Shot-2012-02-03-at-1.13.24-PM-550x147.png[/caption]

Mantra pays off for Enterasys’ NPS

With a mantra of “There is nothing more important than our customers”, one would expect Siemens offshoot Enterasys to have a respectable Net Promoter Score.  And this week, the network infrastructure provider announced it had achieved an NPS of +81, based on input from global customers across a number of industries.

According to customers, key points of differentiation about Enterasys include the following:

  • The vast majority of the time the first person to answer the phone is the product expert.
  • Product experts are highly experienced – with an average tenure of 13 years.
  • Customers benefit from the simplicity of the company’s OneFabric architecture.

We were also particularly interested to note another tidbit of information. In stark contrast to the relentless drive to outsource support to call centres, the company’s support centre is 100% in-house. And this has paid real dividends in terms of customer satisfaction. Noted one client: “Enterasys' technical support is amazing. Whenever I call for support, I gain fast access to knowledgeable engineers who really care about getting the issue resolved and being thorough about it.”

Service providers, take note! More: Smart Grid

V-Rooms reveals A+ NPS, revenue growth to match

Atlanta-based virtual data room company V-Rooms has announced revenue growth of 38% for 2011, more than double the growth rate of the industry. In a press release, they attribute this growth to their A+ Net Promoter Score, which they call a “world class distinction.”

While we applaud a high Net Promoter Score probably more than the next person, we are a little confused. Although Karen Perkins, President of V-Rooms says “We've put our focus on delivering the service, security, and accessibility that our customers want at an affordable price,” we aren’t really sure if the company’s NPS has improved or declined, if their surveys have helped them to change and improve their offering, or who conducted the research. Numbers are good enough for the rest of the NPS world, can you tell us what an "A+" actually is? Source

NPS_Napkin2-300x300.jpgNPS on a napkin

The beauty of NPS lies in its simplicity, and nothing says simplicity quite like a diagram scribbled on the back of a napkin. David Mitzenmacher, chief customer officer at Volusion, has distilled the essence of NPS onto a napkin and uploaded a scan onto his blog.

In response, NPS guru Rob Markey noted “As the co-author of a 267-page book on the subject, I should probably find this vaguely disturbing. Instead, I’m really impressed. Nice job, Dave!” Net Promoter on a napkin Rob Markey’s response


Next Up: Case Study: The Welcoming Host - How SingleHop Implemented their NPS program

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