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Net Promoter News: Restaurateurs know customer service, Obama on a Promoter roll, but both candidates verging on unelectable, NPS asker on Telstra uniform, Canon smokes competitors

bad-customer-service-300x225.jpgOn Restaurateurs and customer service

To kick off this week’s News about Net Promoter, a note from the food industry.

According to a new book, “The Art of Restaurateur” reviewed in The Economist, the restaurant business is one of the toughest around. With approximately 60% of American eateries closing or changing ownership within their first three years, making the customer truly happy is a vital part of the success equation, lest the brave entrepreneur risk his or her livelihood and sometimes even health in this hazardous occupation.

Author Nicholas Lander, himself no stranger to the business, offers this sage customer satisfaction advice that could be applied across all industries: “Mistakes are inevitable, but almost all can be put right with a smile, and apology and a generous gesture. Treated right, the unhappy customer becomes a lifelong fan”. The Economist

[caption id="attachment_3396" align="alignleft" width="202" caption="Excellent Election Analysis from Temkin"]election-nps-temkin.png[/caption]

Obama on a Promoter roll, but both candidates verging on unelectable 

According to new research by the Temkin Group on the US election, President Obama significantly outstrips challenger Mitt Romney when it comes to Promoters. However, in an intriguing twist, the research shows that Obama and Romney have very low overall scores, with Romney registering NPS -67 and Obama -33.

According to Bruce Temkin, the survey was a random sample with respondent demographics matched to the US Census population distribution for age, income, region, gender, location and ethnicity, but does not include quotas for party affiliation. For a lively discussion on the methodology and implications of the survey, as well as extra demographic quirks in terms of support for each candidate, see Experience Matters.

Telstra’s new duds to get Net Promoter treatment

Aussie telco Telstra has had an image problem with many Australian consumers for a number of years, (external research put the company’s NPS at -44 in 2006). In an effort to turn around this dismal perception among its customers, this year the company has been trumpeting a renewed focus on customer service and implementation of NPS surveys.

In a continuation of this theme, this week the Telstra announced that in a push to give the brand a consistent identity and bring a more human and personal touch to its customer interactions, it is introducing new uniforms across its entire workforce. According to CMO Mark Buckman, the impact of the new uniforms will be measured using Net Promoter, both internally and externally.

By some measures, Telstra has already seen an improvement in its customer service over the last year – but how much impact will a new outfit have?

It may be tempting to dismiss this as a PR gimmick of little substance, but Buckman believes that uniforms have a “vital” role to play in perceptions of the Telstra brand, and furthermore, the new duds will help bring back a positive energy into the workplace. Given that employee engagement is a consistent attribute of businesses with leading customer service, Telstra may just be on to something.

However, we are curious to see how the question is worded. “Would you recommend this uniform to a friend or family member?” seems a strange angle to take on a customer satisfaction question… The Australian (partial paywall)

Canon outguns competitors in Readers’ Choice Awards

Canon USA has announced it has received the 2012 Readers’ Choice Award for Service and Reliability for digital cameras, camcorders and printers, with its NPS for camcorders increasing by 11 points (to +57) for 2012. bases the awards on responses to surveys it sends to its subscribers. Respondents are asked only to rate products and services that they actually use, and are asked several questions about their overall satisfaction with the products. These questions span product reliability, technical support, and repairs within the past 12 months – giving a thorough overview of consumer sentiment among a very engaged group of users.

According to the publication, PCMag has asked readers how likely they would be to recommend a company for a number of years, and now presents the answer to that question as both an average and a Net Promoter Score. Sounds a sound methodology to us!

Long Island Exchange PCMag

Australian CustomerGauge User Group (ACGUG) meetup

In March this year, our partner Genroe organised a meetup for CustomerGauge users in Australia, and according to visitors probably the best part of the meeting was the way attendees freely shared their insights and ideas on the question “how we’re making Net Promoter work for us.”

Genroe is now organising a second meetup for the end of this month, with the goal of sharing best practices among users and discussing new features of CustomerGauge.  Genroe

Net Promoter Vacancies

Customer Insight Manager: Glasgow

Customer Relationship and Loyalty Manager: London, The Carphone Warehouse

Next Up: Webinar, 12 Sept 2012: Making Your Business Transparent with the CG Social Media Suite

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