What are your customers really thinking? (CHURN PART 4)

Anita Toth
Anita Toth Member Posts: 246 Expert
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edited December 2020 in Strategy & Planning

You’ve done all the right things -- NPS, CSAT, CES and other surveys are sent out with regularity and at key times in the customer journey.

You speak regularly with customers to make sure all is going well and provide the support they need for success.

And yet, there’s so much you don’t know about what’s going with your customers, despite speaking to them regularly and sending out surveys.

It’s because your customer feedback strategy is missing the 3rd level of data: deep data.

The 3 levels of data are:

#1. Surface level data

#2. Medium data

#3. Deep data

#1. Single-answer surveys like NPS, CSAT, CES are surface level data. They provide a general indication of how customers feel about your company or product. Surface level data is ideal for trends and benchmarking.

#2. Medium level data is surveys that are multi-question with both open and closed-ended questions (NPS, CSAT, CES with comments for instance). Medium level data surveys allow for comments which give a little more understanding of why customers picked their responses. Medium level data includes both quantitative and qualitative data responses.

#3. Deep data is found in focus groups and interviews where there is the ability to ask the respondent to provide greater detail to their responses. Deep data from customer interviews and focus groups highlight the nuances that surface and medium level surveys like NPS, CSAT and CES gloss over. Because of direct interaction with customers in real time, focus groups and interviews provide an opportunity to ask customers to explain their responses at a deeper level, something even the world’s best surveys are unable to do.

To increase retention, you need customer feedback from all 3 levels: surface, medium, and deep to get a complete picture of what your customers want, need and desire. Relying only on surface and medium level data (like NPS, CSAT and CES) is like having a puzzle but with a bunch of missing pieces – you can get a sense of what the puzzle looks like in general but you can’t see details and some areas you can’t even figure out what’s going on.

To get the complete picture of what your customers want, need and desire, you need to add formal customer interviews and focus groups to your feedback strategy. Speaking to customers when touching base or sending surveys simply isn’t enough.

To really understand your customers, interviews and focus groups have to be a part of your customer feedback strategy. Focus groups and interviews are the only data collection methods that provide opportunities to probe customers for deeper, more meaningful responses in real time. Unlike in surveys, there’s no need to guess what a customer’s comment means. With focus groups and interviews, you can ask them to explain what they meant. This is how you get a deeper understanding of how your customer think, what they feel, why they behave as they do and what they truly want.

My next post will show you specific ways to use your customer feedback to lower churn.