I was just completing a report for a new banking client and noticed two measurements heading in opposite directions. Their mystery shopping scores were low, but their customer satisfaction from exit surveys was high.
So what’s going on?
This highlights the problem with reliance on one measurement. The customers are woo’d by the nice branch, and super polite staff who are expert and reiterating what the client asked for.
They also get a nice farewell. But here’s the problem. The staff are not doing the things that make the sale.
Two critical aspects of a home loan are to:
1) determine the customer’s needs (so they staff don’t go into boring sales spiels), and
2) follow-up after the sale (a big driver of making a sale) Both scored poorly.
The branch is polite and presents a professional environment. So the customer walks out thinking the service was “nice” but buys nothing. This is common, and it’s dangerous if you just listen to customers.
How do you get a labourer on a construction site to care?
How do you get a CEO to care?
How do you get your kids to care?
All jobs have implications. Everything you do, no matter mundane has consequences.
Know the consequences
Either you know the consequences of your actions, or you don’t.
A little smile or a growl to a customer will influence them. A small reckless action by a construction worker may unwittingly kill a workmate. An immoral decision by a CEO may knowingly bankrupt an employee.
But that’s not the whole picture.
What also matters is whether you care.
You may care about the consequences on the other person, or you may not.
The upshot is that everyone needs to know their actions matter, whether or not on purpose. Purpose is not a precondition to consequences.
Osteria Francescana was voted the best restaurant in the world for 2018. If you look at the Trip Advisor reviews, you will see 86 people thought it was terrible. That’s 3.8% of the reviewers.
Emirates is considered one of the best airlines in the world, but 2,619 people thought it was terrible (5.2% of reviewers).2 more terrible reviews came in after I did the video
Tiffany & Co Maddison Avenue had 61 one star reviews on Google out of 1,796 reviews (3.4% of reviewers).
So what’s going on? It’s obvious, but not simple.
If 3.4% of people think you’re terrible, then 96.7% of people think you’re not.
These brands stir strong feelings. Despite these being some iconic great brands, you can’t please all the people all the time. That’s obvious.
Public feedback knocks on your door and feels like public shame. It’s tempting to ignore.
It could just be that 3 in 100 people don’t connect with the brand. It could be that customers (in their own heads) have created a different narrative.
After all, Brand Marketing tries to position the brand in the consumer’s mind, but it’s ultimately the consumer who processes its meaning. Just because you position a brand a certain way doesn’t mean consumers will receive it that way in their head. So for some customers it may just be brand expectation.
You may position Tiffany as the go to luxury brand, but 3% of people may be expecting rainbows and butterflies when they walk in. They may somehow feel underwhelmed. You can’t control that and nor should you ignore it. Some people walking onto an Emirates plane may be expecting business class type seats in economy.
I often see brands freak out over a negative review. Someone from head office will contact the offending store asking them to explain the subjective review left by a single customer. This could be the only contact a store has with head office about anything in months. The store gets in a spiral, and morale just drops.
“They only care about catching us out on the bad things”
So what do you do with this information? Get global and local.
Get local and global
Individual reviews need to be reviewed at the store level. If an individual site receives a terrible review, then it’s incumbent on the store to find out why, and take corrective action if it’s at all possible.
Corporate should be looking at trends over time to see if there is a systemic deterioration (e.g. the quality from the new food supplier has dropped). Corporate should also be looking at trends by store to ensure the stores are taking corrective action. But corporate should not be freaking out about individual poor scores.
More importantly, no-one should be crazily think the sky is falling down when 97% of people don’t think you are terrible.
We’ve just launches a social media monitor to allow organisations to track the trends by store over time and also to track whether stores are actively dealing with poor scores. We still see people struggling to deal with the distinction of when to dive in and when not.
It’s quite clear. Stores should dive into the individual results, and head office should dive into trends.
If you think it’s to measure customer service you may want to re-consider.
Surveys measure what the customer thinks they thought.
Those thoughts can be wrong, and more importantly, they don’t measure what makes you money.
Customers are so easily swayed by a nice employee and nice environment. They may even be loyal to your product and give you unadulterated high scores. But…..
Was the promotion on display?
Did the staff member go through a needs analysis?
Did the staff member physically put the product in the customer’s hand?
Did the staff member try to close a sale?
Did the staff member try to up-sell?
Did the staff member mention the loyalty program?
Did the staff member take the customer’s details?
Did the staff member follow up after the enquiry? (e.g. in car dealerships)
All these points are core drivers of profit and INVISIBLE to the customer. You will surely have your own list of profitable events in your company which are invisible to the customer, yet they’ll give you rave reviews even if you don’t do the activities.
May 07, 2019 /
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