Customer research is integral to the success of any business. Without knowledge of your target demographics’ needs and preferences, your product or service may never be sold. However, eliciting customer feedback isn’t always as easy as it seems. The feedback you get may not provide you with the kind of things you want to know, or may not be helpful enough to have you respond with the appropriate changes. With that in mind, below are some tips you can use to get more genuine customer feedback from your audience and what you’ll need to look at to get good information.
One of the more traditional ways of obtaining customer feedback is to provide customers with surveys. While this has certainly been done for decades, it is a method that works. It can provide you with quick and accurate data, and if offered right after or before a purchase, it keeps experiences fresh in the customer’s mind. Obtaining these survey results no longer requires forcing customers to mail them in or standing around in a shopping mall until you find people who have actually purchased your products. Today, most customer surveys are filled out online. You can, for example, provide the link to the survey on a receipt when a customer shops at your brick and mortar location. Promising some kind of coupon or discount for filling out the survey may also act as a good incentive to increase the amount of genuine data you obtain.
Leverage Social Media
Another excellent strategy to obtain genuine customer feedback is to leverage your social media accounts. Social networks like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are the perfect vehicles for gauging responses to products and obtaining other valuable information from customers that use those websites. You need to be savvy about how you use your accounts. Make sure your social media manager is trained on how to properly elicit and respond to customer feedback. If your Twitter account actually responds defensively to negative tweets about new products, it could stifle further feedback and even turn customers off of your products entirely. Instead, you should be trying to understand how customers actually feel about products whether positive or negative. Come up with affordable and strategic methods of dealing with less than favorable reviews so you can start a discourse with your customers and get better ideas for changes.
Inbound & Outbound Call Center
Communicating directly with customers is also extremely important. If your customers can actually talk to you, you may obtain more information and context than you would if you were restricted to text alone. One of the best ways to do this is to maintain a call center that handles both inbound and outbound calls.
An inbound call occurs when a customer calls you. Usually, this is done to resolve some issue a customer may be having with your products. This kind of information is extremely important. It can allow you to adjust your products to address design flaws and greatly improve experiences and Customer Feedback overall.
Outbound calls can be made when your company wants to perform some research. You could ask questions to customers about their satisfaction or call non-customers in the demographic you’re targeting about their possible interest in your products. Make sure your call center representatives only do so in a friendly and calm manner. They shouldn’t be upset if certain people do not want to talk on the phone about products as will be the case with many. Overall, only use this strategy sparingly since calling too much can produce negative results.
Allow Feedback through Your Website
Lastly, try to give customers the option of sending you feedback through your website. Include a text box where they can compose their messages quickly. Forcing customers to draft an actual e-mails may be seen as too much work by many people. Make it easier by incorporating chat or message systems through your app or website.
Overall, customer feedback is integral to the success of any company. Make sure you implement good strategies for collecting genuine customer feedback and integrating that feedback into your business processes, product design, and marketing. When you show you can listen, your customers will give you real results.