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What is Voice of the Customer? A 2022 Guide

Customers who feel they’re cared about stick around, spend more, and spread the word about your brand to their friends and colleagues. Yet without an effective system for understanding how your customers are feeling, you’re unlikely to secure these benefits.

That’s why you need to be led by the voice of the customer (VoC). VoC is the process by which you gather customer feedback—from all of your accounts and at every touchpoint—and dig into their experience, preferences and expectations.

Armed with a regular understanding of your customer, you’ll be able to build stronger relationships with them, improve loyalty, grow account sizes and win more referrals.

According to Maureen Burns of Bain & Co on the Account Experience podcast, organizations that lead in customer experience consistently, and dramatically, outperform their competitors.

What do CX leaders have in common? They’ve built a successful voice of customer program, built around Net Promoter, that creates promoters amongst their customers. Promoters become opportunities to spread brand affinity, increase share of wallet, and win growth through referrals.

In this article, we’ll show you how to build a VoC program you can rely on. At CustomerGauge, we know our stuff. We’ve been ranked by Gartner as the leading VoC software for B2B brands.

Here’s what you can expect:

Table of Contents

  1. The Essentials—Things you need to know
    1. Definition of VoC

    2. Benefits of a VoC program

    3. What makes a successful VoC program?

    4. What’s the difference between B2B and B2C VoC?

    5. Three VoC examples from the real-world

  2. Building a successful voice of customer program in B2B—Getting set up right
    1. Questions to ask before starting

    2. Why a voice of customer strategy is key

    3. Which voice of customer framework should you use?

    4. Voice of customer and Net Promoter

    5. Alternative voice of customer methodologies

    6. Finding the right software partner

  3. How to implement your voice of customer program—Best practices once you’ve started
    1. Measurement tips (metrics, survey examples, and questions)

    2. Acting tips (doing analysis, benchmarking yourself and closing the loop)

    3. Growing from VoC tips (how to impact growth and show ROI)

    4. Advanced tips: How to improve your VoC program

NPS benchmarks

Definition of Voice of the Customer

Voice of the customer (VoC) is the name for the processes, frameworks, strategies, and tactics that businesses use to understand what your customers think about you. It clarifies what customers say (and what they don’t say) about your products, services, or brand and equips you to meet their needs and earn their future business.

In short, VoC is about capturing and acting upon customer feedback—primarily through surveys like Net Promoter and a closed-loop feedback strategy.

Unfortunately, not every customer that is unhappy will tell you they are unhappy. Instead, they might disengage, fail to turn up to meetings, and use your product less. Ultimately, you’ll want to know why—so that you can act on it to prevent churn.

As our VP of Education and Program, Cary Self, has said, customer surveys are “not a research tool, but an action tool.” To be effective, you must drive change with your voice of customer measurement efforts.

These days, the stakes are higher than ever. According to one study, customer experience is now the number one brand differentiator—even more important than both price and product. With companies increasingly competing on customer experience—and using increasingly sophisticated tools to do so—you can’t afford to neglect your own CX.

This is why an effective voice of the customer program matters so much:

The Benefits of Voice of the Customer

A voice of the customer program designed to create growth enables you to build stronger customer relationships, reduce churn, and drive new revenue opportunities.

These are the benefits of voice of customer programs that are fully operational:

  • Build stronger customer relationships. Customers are complex, capricious, and hard to keep track of across different touchpoints. But it doesn’t have to be that way. For an account manager or CX team aiming to keep customers happy, a voice of customer strategy that regularly ‘checks-in’ with customers clarifies the situation—helping you understand which customer relationships need focus and why.

  • Get insight into loyalty and retention levels. Selling to a new customer costs businesses 5 to 25 times more than selling to existing ones. That means having an insight into your retention rate (and the reasons behind churn) can help you increase your profit margins.

Many businesses are blind to their retention rates. In research for our ebook Retention Management to Combat Churn, we found 44% of companies couldn’t tell you their churn rate.

  • Quantify the financial impact of referrals. VoC systems such as Account Experience help you turn customer sentiment into hard numbers. With this knowledge, you can prove the value of your experience program internally and get more resources for investing in experience.

  • Improve your products and services. The knowledge you’ve gained from your VoC efforts should be used to improve your offering. It’s likely that your voice of customer program will reveal a number of egregious and not so egregious issues that are impacting your customers. Fixing these will go a long way to inspiring retention and upsell.

  • Align your team. A focus on customer experience has been found (Qualtrics Employee Study, 2017) to have a big impact on employee satisfaction. Meanwhile, dedicating your business to your customer experience provides a source of truth to align all growth efforts.

  • Identify opportunities for revenue growth. Our research found that 62% of businesses don’t link their VoC data to their bottom line. This is a missed opportunity. By linking your customer sentiments to account size, you can prioritize your most valuable customers first, saving them from churn. Furthermore, by identifying extremely happy customers you can find opportunities for referrals and upsales.

CustomerGauge’s Account Experience technology puts the financial impacts of your VoC program at the heart of what you do. Find out more below—or book a demo to get started.

What Makes a Successful Voice of Customer Program?

While VoC programs can improve your business, it doesn’t mean they will. That’s because many systems are simply not achieving what they should.

To secure the benefits your business needs, keep the following rules in mind when building your VoC system:

  • It should be designed with actual customers in mind. Customers don’t want surveys to be a nuisance or waste of time. Instead, any VoC surveys should be short, straightforward, and respectful of your customers’ effort. We’ll come to what makes a great survey below.

Yet, as our Cary Self says, there’s more to VoC than just a survey: “churn doesn’t come from feedback and data. It comes from a lack of feedback and data.” Your VoC program should account for the fact that the highest churn risks may not always reply to your surveys.

  • It adds value across the business. VoC strategies aren’t the responsibility of your marketing or sales department alone. Rather, they should involve everyone in your business—from customer service teams to the CEO.

  • Its emphasis is on action—not just listening. Understanding your customer experience is great. But that’s just half the battle. Transforming customer sentiment into action to improve is a crucial part of what your VoC program should do.

Here’s our VP of Education, Cary, again: “Nothing annoys customers more than taking the time to give feedback then having nothing done about it. Why bother having the program if you aren’t creating change from the feedback you receive?”

  • It identifies strategies based on revenue. A VoC program should isolate specific actions that can drive revenue. In fact, a VoC tool that isn’t linked to revenue isn’t worth the investment at all.

Discover more about why your voice of customer system must include revenue.

Voice of Customer for B2B: What’s the Difference?

The above applies to every kind of business. Yet, if you’re a B2B brand looking to set up a VoC program, you’ll have some specific factors to consider.

We recently wrote about this in our newsletter “why sample-based surveys don’t work in B2B”, you can subscribe at the bottom of this page for more insight like this.

Here’s some other things to bear in mind:

  • B2B brands typically have more touchpoints. In B2B, the customer journey is generally more complex than in B2C, with different stakeholders, decisionmakers, and touchpoints to juggle. In your VoC program, you’ll want to understand how everyone feels that interacts with your brand, for example by surveying multiple stakeholders in each account.

  • Your customers vary by value. In B2C, customer value (their financial contribution) is fairly consistent across customers. In B2B, different payment plans will likely impact how much each account is worth to your business.

A C-Suite leader at a company I talked to the other day gave us a great example of this. He discussed how a negligibly small customer for them brings in $15 million annually, an average customer $100 million, while their largest customers are in the ballpark of $1 billion in annual revenue.

This is a key differentiation point: in B2B, some customers are 100x more valuable than others. Knowing the difference will have a big impact on where you put your resources to prevent churn.

  • Loyalty is decreasing. A specific challenge for B2B brands is that customer loyalty appears to be in decline. One recent study found that 68% of leaders say customers are less loyal than they were. This speaks of higher competition—something you need to stay on top of.

B2B brands are struggling with their VoC. In fact, one study found only 28% of B2B leaders felt they had a real influence over their CX. But this doesn’t need to be you.

Here are 3 B2B brands that have made a success of their VoC programs:

3 Real-World Examples of Voice of Customer Successes in B2B

  • SmartBear, the US-based IT company, built a VoC program from the ground up in 2017. Before that, the company didn’t have a customer experience team at all. But in just 18 months, a remarkable change had happened:
    • The company increased referral revenue by $6 million.

    • It boosted referral close rates by over 50%.

    • It saved 60% of customers at risk of churn.

How? By implementing Net Promoter surveys, building deeper relationships with clients, and by engaging with multiple stakeholders in each account. Find out more here: How SmartBear Brought in $6 Million in Referrals

  • INAP is a data center manager that managed to cut their churn rate in half in two years thanks to their VoC efforts. The company used NPS surveys too, but as INAP’s TJ Waldorf said:

Fueled by action are probably the most important words. It's one thing to just collect the data, but in my mind the crux of this program is to actually do something (with the data)."

Find out more here: How INAP Reduced Churn by 50%

  • Alchemista is a catering company that suffered a serious blow back in 2019: they lost a customer that accounted for 20% of their revenue. But now, they have a retention rate of 100%. How did they do it?

Rather than checking in with customers every month or year, Alchemista began to continuously monitor every customer relationship every single day. This meant they could intervene on any hiccups before they turned into a bigger problem. You can read about the brand’s experience here: How Alchemista Achieved 100% Retention

What did all of these B2B brands have in common? They built a revenue-focus voice of customer program that focused on insight and action with the help of CustomerGauge best practices and software.

You can find more success stories here, Voice of Customer Examples: 6 Companies Doing it Right.

Building a Successful Voice of Customer Program

We’ve seen that voice of customer can drive new revenue opportunities, reduce churn, and improve your products and services. But how practically can you achieve these outcomes?

At this stage, your area of focus should be on:

  • Planning

  • Devising a framework and methodology to design your program

  • Reaching out to a software partner to guide you

Let’s start by reviewing the questions you should be asking yourself in the planning process.

Questions to Ask Before Starting on Your VoC Program

Before you get started with your voice of customer research, you need to be clear why and how you want to engage with your customers. These questions will help you develop your strategy:

  • What’s the goal? Start by identifying the intention behind your VoC program. Is it to solve your churn problem? To identify product improvements? Or do you want to use the data to build a referral program? Your answer will determine who and what you ask—and how you’ll know your strategy is a success.

  • Which stakeholders are you surveying? Not everyone will be able to provide the information you need. Understanding the right recipient of your surveys—in line with your strategic goals—will be an important part of your program’s success. Why? Because by keeping surveys relevant to customers, you’ll keep your response rate high.

In our best practice book on NPS surveying, we recommend surveying several people from each hierarchical layer (frontline, middle management, and executive) to get an accurate picture of account health.

  • Which customers or accounts are you surveying? If you’re in the B2C space, you’re likely going to want to segment your customer base and conduct a sample-based survey. That works well for B2C because customers are often quite homogenous.

On the other hand, in the B2B space, we recommend to start by segmenting customers by their revenue contribution (annual deal size). If you have limited voice of customer program resources then focus on collecting feedback from your most valuable customer accounts first, working your way down the revenue size until you have 100% coverage.

  • How many questions will you ask? What you want to find out will determine what you want to ask—but also how many questions you should ask too. Crucially, the more questions you include in your VoC survey, the fewer responses you’re likely to receive. If you’re running an NPS survey-led voice of customer program, use the best practices mentioned in this blog post.

  • How are you reaching your audience? Planning your VoC program is a good start, but it’ll be limited if you don’t have customer contact details. Email, phone, and internet surveys can all be effective, but in B2B contexts a lack of coverage is a big indicator of churn. Getting as many contacts as possible from across your customer accounts will be an important first step.

  • How frequently will you survey your customers? Surveying customers frequently gives you more voice of customer data to learn from (or more to be overwhelmed by?). There’s a fine line to tread here. No survey should be frivolous. Learn when to send a survey here.

  • Do you have the resources to act on the feedback you’ve collected? Feedback must be acted upon. If you’re a B2B organization, we recommend that you only survey the amount of people you’re able to effectively close the loop with. That means if you don’t have the team to follow up with detractors, then reduce the number of companies you’re surveying.

  • Do you have buy-in from senior people in other departments? It’d be a mistake to kick off your program without winning internal support. Every department is responsible for CX in some way, and some people don’t like unsolicited negative feedback. Get them onboard early in the planning process to help develop a collaborative mindset about improving processes with the customer in mind.

Why a Voice of Customer Strategy is Important

The previous questions will be pivotal in your overall VoC strategy—and lead you to a VoC framework you can use to formalize your efforts.

A goal-led voice of customer strategy will make or break the success of your program. Here are some other reasons we recommend using strategic frameworks:
  • Ensure alignment. Across your business, sales shouldn’t be doing something different to customer service when it comes to VoC. A company-wide strategy can help prevent silos in CX efforts. As our VP of Education Cary Self says:
“One of the biggest mistakes we’ve all made is making retention a responsibility of one person or one department. But to better understand how to retain a customer, you have to understand the entire customer journey—how each department engages with the customer and the impact each interaction has on loyalty. All departments need to be involved with this strategy.”
  • Track your progress. Goals create alignment, but they also provide benchmarks for progress and they improve your chance of success. We’ve found that companies that set strategic CX goals grow twice as fast as those that don’t.

Get clarity on your ROI. If done right, a VoC strategy should be able to tell you how your CX has affected your bottom line. Ultimately, this makes it easier to prove the worth of your customer experience program.

      Which Voice of Customer Framework is Most Effective for B2B?

      Your strategic goals will inform the voice of customer framework you use to guide your customer-facing activities.

      By framework, we mean the processes you will follow to take customer insights and put them to use to improve your business operations.

      At CustomerGauge, we developed a proprietary voice of customer methodology called Account Experience (AX). AX creates clarity on how B2B organizations can use Net Promoter programs to grow faster and more healthily.

      The world of customer experience was built for B2C and for far too long companies have struggled to translate the methodologies across. AX brings account lifecycle management techniques used in sales and customer success together with NPS to help companies identify churning accounts and opportunities for referral and upsell.

      AX runs Net Promoter surveys like a typical program would, to give a measurable, scalable, and revenue-based methodology that allows you to get insight into your customer experience—and how it impacts your bottom line.

      Account Experience works through three main steps:

      1. Measure. This is the part of your VoC framework in which you listen to your customers. Using NPS—alongside other voice of customer metrics—you’ll gather CX data and gain insights into the drivers of your customer sentiment. Best practices here focus on what, who, when, and how often you measure feedback.

      2. Act. In response to customer insights, your job is to close the loop. That means reaching out to your customers to show how you’ll improve. How will you change your customer service? Or will you incorporate their suggestions into your product development? Ultimately, you must take those actions. Without action, your VoC strategy sews distrust.

      3. Grow. Finally, use your customer experience data to drive revenue growth. Your aim here is to boost referrals, cut churn, and find opportunities for upsells. That means putting your VoC insights in the service of growth.

      We’ll look at this in detail below. But first, let’s explore why NPS is so important to your VoC framework.

      Why NPS is the Most Powerful VoC Methodology for B2B

      Net Promoter Score works by gauging how likely your customers are to recommend your brand to friends, family, or colleagues. This likelihood has been found to be a powerful predictor of revenue growth.

      In a voice of customer survey based on NPS, you’ll ask your customers:

      On a scale from 0 to 10, how likely are you to recommend our brand/service/product to a friend or colleague?

      With the responses to this question, you’ll identify three different types of customers:

      • Detractors. Scoring you 0-6, detractors are your biggest worry. They are your highest churn risks and they may spread negative word of mouth. Part of your VoC program should involve identifying them and nurturing them to become promoters.

      • Passive customers. Giving you a score of 7-8, they’re not your highest risk of churn, but nor can you take them for granted. Understand what would make them happier and engage.

      • Promoters give you a score of 9-10. These are your most loyal customers—those who are highly unlikely to churn and will recommend your brand when prompted. Your VoC program should aim to have the highest number of promoters as possible.

      Ultimately, you’ll receive your NPS score, which goes from -100 to 100. To find yours, subtract the percentage of detractors from the percentage of promoters. You can compare your performance to other brands in the largest collection of NPS benchmarks on the planet.

      The benefit of NPS is that it is scalable and flexible for you, and really simple for your customers to complete. And that allows you to ensure a high response rate, to better identify your churn risks.

      At CustomerGauge, we developed an extension to heritage NPS to make our Account Experience methodology even more powerful. That’s monetized NPS, which allows companies to tie their VoC data to financial metrics—to provide a fuller understanding of the impact their CX is having.

      Alternative Voice of Customer Methodologies to Use

      In our 2021 report, The State of B2B Account Experience, we found that 41% of B2B organizations are using NPS in the VoC programs. But there are other VoC methodologies out there that brands are using too.

      Our tip? Combine VoC methodologies to get the fullest picture of your customer satisfaction.

      • CSAT and CES. Alternative surveying systems can be important to your VoC efforts, with Customer Satisfaction (CSAT) and Customer Effort Score (CES) being two popular alternatives to NPS. Find out more about these below.

      • Customer service. Your customer service team will likely be engaging with customer sentiments full-time, through live chat, troubleshooting, or customer calls. Yet making these interactions useful for VoC can be a challenge for businesses. Recording all the exchanges will be crucial.

      • Passive VoC methodologies. Not every dissatisfied customer answers your survey, or even engages with customer service. If customers aren’t actively sharing their thoughts, those sentiments can be inferred from their behavior. For example, how many times are they logging into the product? Or are they attending business reviews?

      To build the most powerful VoC program you can, you need to be able to use all of these techniques together. Here, VoC software can help:

      Finding the Right Voice of Customer Software Partner

      With the greater complexity of B2B VoC, you need software that can keep up. And at CustomerGauge, our Account Experience platform has been consistently rated best VoC software for B2B by Gartner.

      Whichever voice of customer tool you choose, we recommend that it can give you the following:

      • Comprehensive VoC metrics. Survey results aren’t always enough. Choosing a VoC platform that can provide NPS survey data alongside engagement metrics and passive VoC is a must to catch any non-responding customers.

      • Flexibility. Every B2B brand has different needs, customers, and touchpoints. And the reality is that these might change as your VoC program progresses. To be able to manage this change, your software—and any payment plans—should be as flexible as possible.

      • Integrations. There are many different ways to listen to the voice of the customer. The best software out there will ensure that you can integrate all of them. At CustomerGauge, our VoC platform enables you to integrate data from live chat, customer service programs, CRMs, and more.

      • Revenue links. To optimize the results of your strategy, your VoC software should give you clarity on the revenue impacts of your customer sentiment data. And that means actionable insights into opportunities for growth too.

      As our VP of Education Cary Self explains, “CustomerGauge goes beyond just survey responses with metrics like response rate, speed of closing the loop, growth over time, and usage. That gives you a full 360 degree view of all the true indicators of customer experience. Layer revenue on top, and you can quickly see how much each area of your business is contributing or detracting from overall growth”.

      Implementing Your Voice of Customer Program: Advanced VoC Best Practices

      With the fundamentals in place, it’s now time to put your program into full swing with these voice of customer best practices. Let’s return to the three steps in our VoC framework: Measure, Act, and Grow.

      1. Measure

      Any voice of the customer program starts with measurement. To get this right, we need to talk about two primary things: VoC metrics and your VoC surveys.

      What VoC Metrics to Use in B2B?

      To get the clearest image of your customer sentiment, your VoC program should track as many CX and engagement metrics as possible:

      • Monetized NPS. This is the number one metric to use for your VoC program. Used by the highest number of B2B brands, it will be the most important benchmark you have to track CX competition and improvement. It will help you monitor revenue growth too.

      • Customer satisfaction (CSAT). Your customer experience team can track the success of individual interactions using CSAT. It’s not an excellent gauge of customer loyalty, but it can help you understand how customers feel about individual interactions they have with you.

      • Customer effort score (CES). CES is based on the belief that the less effort a customer makes to interact with you, the more likely they are to return. This makes it an important indicator of customer loyalty.

      • Number of customer logins. If you’re a SaaS brand, product usage is easily monitored. If this is low on a particular account, it could be an indicator of churn risk.

      • Account signals. Not all your customers will fill out your surveys immediately. But they will show several other signals like product usage, customer support interactions, purchases, and meeting attendance. You should also look closely at what we call absence of signal.

      • Survey response rate. Response rate should be included among your key metrics. Why? Because we’ve found that a healthy response rate correlates with higher NPS scores and higher retention. The average response rate for B2B brands is 12%. But you can get it much higher.

      Voice of the Customer Survey Examples

      There’s no time like the present to get started with your customer surveys. In fact, the more you delay, the more likely you are to be losing revenue to churn.

      You’ll be able to perfect your customer surveys later on. But to get started, use the following VoC survey question examples:

      NPS scale

      Or, alternatively, if you want to know about a specific touchpoint in your customer journey:

      NPS scale example

      But what is really important when asking VoC survey questions is that you ask customers why they gave the score they did. You can do that with a question a little bit like this:

      voice of customer survey example

      3 Common Questions from Companies Beginning Their VoC Campaign

      At this point in their VoC program, many companies have some uncertainties about whether they are doing the right thing.

      What’s important, firstly, is that you keep going with your campaign. Yet it’s completely natural to have some questions. Here are some of the most common:

      1. “Do you really need real-time voice of customer signals?”

        Receiving VoC signals in real-time will always be the ideal. And with a software that permits 360-degree customer tracking, you can be sure that you’re getting live updates on customer sentiment so you can be sure that your relationship stays healthy.

        Yet, with things like NPS surveys, real-time VoC signals just aren’t realistic. We’ve found that surveying quarterly gives the best balance of response rates with retention. Just make sure you close the loop as fast as you can.

        2. “Does sampling bias in VoC research matter?”

          Some companies worry that their VoC research doesn’t include enough responses to reach statistical significance. It’s a legitimate worry. But in reality, your goal here is not scientific research. It’s to prevent churn and boost your revenue. If even one survey response lets you do that, then it’s worth it.

          Find out more here: Why Sampling Bias in Voice of Customer Research Doesn’t Matter

          3. “How does voice of the user differ from voice of the customer?”

            Simply, the people that use your products aren’t always the people that pay for your products. Yes, you want to hear from the people that use your products directly, but you also want to know what the rest of your client account is thinking.

            You can find out more here: Why "Voice of the User" is not "Voice of the Customer" in B2B

            Now you’ve measured, it’s time to act.

            2. Act

            The second stage of your VoC framework involves understanding and acting on your results. We break this down into three parts: analysis, benchmarking, and closing the loop.

            How to Get Voice of Customer Analysis Right

            You have collected all that data from listening to your customers. But now you need to learn from it. That involves Voice of Customer analysis—and there are a couple of ways that you can make as valuable a use of your data as possible.

            • Monetize. One of the most important parts of your analysis process will be to understand how much each of your NPS respondents is worth. For example, if you have a high level of detractors, how much of your revenue is at risk of churn? Monetizing your VoC data will be key to making sure that any action you take has the biggest impact on your bottom line.

            • Prioritize. Action is required of you—but where to start? Typically, we say target your most valuable churn risks first—but, overall, any detractors should be the first customers with whom you close the loop. Meanwhile, if your VoC analysis shows that particular customers are not engaged at all, get in there fast to see what’s going on.

            • Ask why. Part of any VoC analysis must investigate the drivers of your customer sentiment. Why have clients given you the NPS score they have? Why are they not using your product as much as they used to? Why haven’t they turned up to a business review?

            The Value of Voice of the Customer Benchmarks

            An important tool to understand how well you’re performing is VoC benchmarks. These are the numbers you use to track your progress, compare your results to other companies, and understand what a good performance looks like.

            You’ll want to use the VoC metrics that we explored above as your central benchmarks. For example:

            • NPS. What is a good NPS score? That typically depends on your industry and your previous performance. What we found in The State of B2B Account Experience is that median NPS scores look a little like this:

            Check out our free database of 1,000s of NPS benchmarks here.

            • Survey response rates. Your response rate should be one of your key metrics. Why? More than anything, because it’s an important marker of customer engagement. But it also shows you the quality of your survey results.

            As things currently stand in B2B, an average response rate is 12.4%, with 4.5% at the low end and 39.3% at the upper limit.

            Why Closing the Loop is Key to Your Voice of Customer System

            However, to start with, don’t get too bogged down with response rates. At this stage, it doesn’t have to be perfect. What’s more important is that you collect customer feedback and then act to close the loop with whoever responds.

            Why do we emphasize closing the loop?

            • It builds trust. If customers take the time to give you feedback and then never hear from you, why would they engage with you again? The truth is they probably won’t. In this way, closing the loop on feedback increases the response rate over time.

            • It improves your retention. We found that simply starting an NPS program can boost your retention by 7%. Yet closing the loop with all of your customers provides an 8.5% retention increase—and can increase your number of promoters by a multiple of three.

            • You can leverage your promoters. Closing the loop is not just about cutting churn. It’s the way that you can encourage promoters to recommend your brand to others too. This will be a key part of your referral campaign.

            There are many more reasons why closing the loop is so important. Find them here:

            3. Grow

            The final stage in our VoC program is growth. This is when you will take all of the insights from your VoC research and put them at the service of your revenue.

            The main strategies you will need here include:

            • Target high-value churn risks. Whether they are detractors or non-engagers, encouraging churn risks to stay will be a crucial part of your growth strategy.

            • Build a referral program. Referrals and recommendations come from your most loyal customers. Nurturing them to actually refer you to a friend or colleague will unlock new opportunities for revenue.

            • Encourage upsells and cross-sales. It’s said that it costs as much as 25 times as much to sell to a new customer compared to an existing one. One of the biggest motors of growth is encouraging resells among your most loyal customers.

            With a strategy for growth in place, you have one more step to go before you have a fully-functioning VoC program. That’s calculating your ROI.

            Proving the ROI of Voice of the Customer

            Let’s hear from our VP of Education and Program, Cary Self, once more:

            “I cannot say this enough. If you’re not tying your program to what your leadership and investors think is the single most important number, you’re going to lack support. Your program should be able to quickly show what impact it has on the bottom line.

            “This was a hard lesson for me to learn: just doing it because it’s the right thing to do is not enough. With an ROI, you’ll not only be able to gain support for your program, but you’ll have a seat at the table when it comes to the future of your company.”

            The trouble is that our research shows that 62% of businesses don’t have their VoC program tied to their bottom line. And that’s making the future of their program pretty vulnerable.

            Get started with our ROI calculator. Or read our article How to Measure ROI of Voice of the Customer

            How to Improve Voice of the Customer: 5 VoC Best Practices

            So, your VoC program is up and running. But how can you make sure you get the best insights possible?

            1. Let NPS lead. While there are a number of different customer experience metrics out there that you can use, NPS remains by far the most powerful. Put this methodology at the heart of your VoC campaign.

            2. Make response rate and coverage key metrics. With your VoC campaign up and running, it’s time to move the needle on response rates. There’s no reason why you can’t aim for a 100% response.

            3. Ruthlessly tackle absence of signal. If customers aren’t engaging with you, it’s a big sign of potential churn. Non-engagement should be a big part of your VoC measurements throughout your program.

            4. Close the loop as fast as you can. You should be aiming to close the loop with all of your customers within 48 hours—maximum. Everyone in your business can be involved in this task—from your C-suite to your frontline staff.

            5. Always tie your VoC data to revenue. It’s always worth repeating: unless your VoC program is linked to revenue, it won’t be telling you all you need to know.

            Learn more tips like these in our article: How to Improve Voice of Customer

            Start Listening to the Voice of the Customer with CustomerGauge

            Voice of the customer is one of the most powerful tools you have to understand your customer sentiment, cut churn, and drive referrals. And there’s no time like the present to get started.

            At CustomerGauge, we specialize in helping B2B brands dig deep into their customer experience and use that data to boost their revenue. Book a demo with us to find out about our software and learn best practices on B2B experience programs.