In this short episode of the Net Promoter System Podcast, Rob Markey explains how a customer advocacy office, or CAO, can be a focal point for learning about—and improving—the customer experience.
A customer advocacy office can serve as the project management office that coordinates product development, marketing and other functional groups in the organization to focus on the customer experience. Net Promoter provides the methodology and the tools; the CAO is the arm of management that puts the methods and tools to work.
Most companies that serve other companies solicit feedback, often in the form of quarterly or semiannual satisfaction surveys.
The Net Promoter System in a B2B setting also solicits feedback from customers. But that’s where the similarity to conventional methodologies ends. This system’s twin goals are to foster customer engagement and build strong client relationships. It isn’t so much a survey method as a means of facilitating relationship-enhancing conversations. It helps sales reps and account managers get involved in solving customers’ problems. It shows marketers and product designers and service engineers ways to make the customer’s experience better. The feedback it provides is continuous: It offers granular insights into what is troubling or delighting any given customer at any given time.
In this short episode of the Net Promoter System Podcast, Rob Markey discusses how the system can facilitate relationship-enhancing conversations.
Learn more: Get Real Feedback from Your B2B Customers
How do you get the best out of employees? Scripted interactions and oppressive rules are never the answer. The best companies hire the right people and set the right expectations, and they trust their employees to use their judgment to make customers happy. When executives step back, employees provide more authentic and empathetic service.
Former Disney executive Lee Cockerell returns to the podcast to share his tips for striking that balance between loose and tight control. At Disney, Lee ran a operation with tens of thousands of employees who were spread across a huge physical space and ranged across a multitude of operational and service functions. What does it take to create a magical experience on that scale? Strong hires, high expectations and trust.
If you missed Lee's first interview, you can check it out here: At Disney, the Show Must Go On
What do you call the space between you and your customer? According to Dayton Semerjian, that's where you'll find the true value of a customer relationship. Dayton is general manager of global customer success and support at the IT services firm CA Technologies.
CA's customers tend to be large companies, and the decision to buy its software and services is usually made by big groups of people armed with heavy analysis. Customer relationships can be very complex, involving many internal teams that handle sales, implementation and tech support.
It’s not that uncommon for some customers to feel like they've fallen through the cracks in situations like these. In this episode, Dayton shares what it takes to earn promoters in complex client relationships.
Learn more: Do Your B2B Customers Promote Your Business?
Hotels didn’t always give out free toiletries. It wasn’t until the 1970s, when a Four Seasons hotel in London first started offering shampoo in showers that other hotels started following suit. And Four Seasons has been setting high standards for luxury travel—and hospitality in general—ever since.
Barbara Talbott, former chief marketing officer at Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, shares how the company grew from a small chain to a global luxury brand during her two decades with the company. She left to start GlenLarkin Advisors in 2009, and now shares her keen sense of customer experience with other companies.
Employees need to see the fundamental connection between the work they do every day and its impact on customers. They must experience firsthand the deep satisfaction of earning their customers’ heartfelt gratitude and loyalty. If they don’t, then their jobs are just jobs—they may do as they’re told, but they won’t bring much energy, enthusiasm or creativity to the workplace.
In this Net Promoter System Podcast short, Rob Markey explains how companies can create an environment where employees bring their best to work every day on behalf of the company.
Learn more: Energetic, Enthusiastic and Creative
To close the loop is not only to let customers know that you have heard their feedback but also to bring the customer’s voice right inside the organization. Employees get a direct line to the people they are serving. They see and hear how they are creating or destroying loyalty and what they can do to improve the customer experience.
In this short episode, Rob Markey explains why this step is a central element of the Net Promoter System.
Learn more: Closing the Loop
Creating a pilot or prototype is an essential part of designing a robust Net Promoter System. These small-scale efforts allow a company to experiment with the system's essential elements, helping the company to create an effective program it can expand to other parts of the organization. In this Net Promoter System Podcast short, Rob Markey shares some best practices for prototypes.
Learn more: The Value of Prototypes
A number rarely tells the whole story. That's why leading Net Promoter companies ask customers to discuss their experiences in their own words.
Bain Fellow Fred Reichheld returns to the podcast to talk about the shortcomings of multiple-choice surveys, the power of verbatim feedback and some common customer service myths.
Some people have a knack for forming genuine human connections whether it's with customers, colleagues or employees. They have a gift for making people feel special. The ability to speak with authenticity and authority might come natural to some people, but it's a skill that can be learned, says Jordan Harbinger, cofounder of The Art of Charm, a program that teaches people how to improve their social skills. Why should this matter to Net Promoter companies? These skills are critical to delighting customers and engaging employees as Jordan explains in this episode.
Recreating the same customer intimacy that an individual shopkeeper can provide is possible for large organizations if they have an operational infrastructure that can foster high-quality interactions on a bigger scale. Rob Markey explains how in this Net Promoter System Podcast short.
In the US, we're used to seeing sale signs that tout 40% discounts. However, consumers in China are more likely to see signs that promote the percentage a customer will have to pay after the price cut. This seemingly subtle shift speaks to the underlying motivations that inform a customer's buying decisions, says Angela Lee, a consumer psychologist and marketing professor at Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management. In this episode, Angela discusses how culture and emotions influence brand loyalty and buying choices.
Have you ever found it hard to tell an employee that his work simply wasn't cutting it? Maybe you were afraid of hurting the employee's feelings or creating tension, so you decided not to say anything. Kim Scott, an executive coach and former Google executive, considers these situations missed opportunities for growth. She argues that honest criticism that's shared with sincere concern can empower employees at every level of a company. In this episode, Kim discusses her Radical Candor framework and the power of saying what you think.
It's a scenario that we routinely face: a company starts off using the Net Promoter System with great enthusiasm, gets a number of quick wins and then hits a wall. They inevitably ask themselves: "What are we doing wrong?" My colleague Aaron Cheris, one of the chief architects of Bain's Net Promoter System, gets this question a lot. So he helped craft an assessment tool that allows companies to measure their efforts in a straightforward and quantitative fashion. His premise was simple: find out what Net Promoter leaders are doing and work backward to understand why their results are so stellar. In this episode, Aaron discusses how companies use the assessment tool and what Net Promoter leaders do differently.
Maurice FitzGerald, the recently retired vice president of customer experience for the software business at Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, has been happily married for more than 25 years. But one Valentine’s Day, he had an epiphany about why some couples stay together for the long haul and others don’t—and why that knowledge is so critical to improving an organization’s customer experience. Maurice shares those insights and others from his Net Promoter experience at HP Enterprise in this episode.
Under Jack Brennan's leadership, Vanguard became an early adopter of the Net Promoter System. With it, customer loyalty became core to how the investment company operated. Jack pushed employees to ask "Are we doing the best thing for the client?" until the question became second nature to them. The goal was always to keep clients for life and to never take on a client they couldn't keep that long. In this episode of the Net Promoter System Podcast, Jack shares some of the practical lessons he learned from his experience at Vanguard.
VimpelCom is one of the largest telecom companies in the world, but a few years ago the company started facing more competition from a new crop of Internet-based rivals. The company decided to become more serious about its mission to focus on customers, adopting the Net Promoter System to guide its efforts. To gauge its progress, VimpelCom used Bain's Net Promoter System assessment tool to identify weak spots. In this episode, Rob Markey talks to VimpelCom executives Anton Telegin and Natalia Macpherson about what it took for the company to make this cultural shift.
The Net Promoter System is about creating a culture in which companies make better decisions on behalf of their customers. The only way to do that is to get reliable feedback from customers, says Rob Markey in this Net Promoter System Podcast short.
Customers can explain what's bothering them or what they like about a company. But they don't always know the full story behind their own feelings. Rob Markey discusses the importance of digging deeper into customer feedback in this Net Promoter System Podcast short.
Customer feedback has traditionally been used to evaluate performance, not necessarily improve it. The Net Promoter System, however, seeks to empower employees by teaching them the skills they need to generate loyalty and enthusiasm among customers. Rob Markey explains how in this Net Promoter System Podcast short.
Fifty years ago, few people could have guessed some of today's most common habits. Habits like having a mobile phone within arm's reach at all times; checking Facebook or email multiple times an hour, or calling an Uber instead of a cab. All companies dream of inspiring such new and compelling habits in their customers, but few manage to achieve it. Nir Eyal, author of Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products, shares his theories on what sets these products apart.
The Net Promoter System is simple in concept, but adopting it can be a cataclysmic event for an organization. From asking frontline employees to reach out to customers to asking finance to manage new metrics, turning Net Promoter into tangible results typically requires significant culture change. Bain Partners Andreas Dullweber, Jason Barro and Maureen Burns discuss some of the biggest hurdles they encounter as they help companies build customer-centric cultures.
Earning goodwill among your customers isn't enough to ensure long-term growth. Leaders must also create the conditions that enable and encourage loyal customers to do what they’re inclined to do anyway. They have to offer customers a continuing stream of products or services that stand out from the competition. They have to deliver those goods at the right price, at the right time, through the right channels, using the right messages. And sometimes they have to help customers communicate their experiences to friends, relatives and the world at large, as Rob Markey explains in this Net Promoter System Podcast short.
Customer feedback is pointless if a company doesn't use it to improve the customer experience. To create loyalty, Net Promoter System companies use this input to address individual customers' concerns and inform systemic improvements, explains Rob Markey in this Net Promoter System Podcast short.