Net Promoter Scores are like Picassos

Before everyone gets upset thinking that I am hating on the Net Promoter Score, (or Picasso for that matter) I’m not. In fact many of our customers rely on their Net Promoter Scores to assess customer service performance. However, the fact remains that Net Promoter Scores are like Picasso’s – they both produce an incomplete picture, leaving its audience with more questions than answers.

The Net Promoter Score is based on a simple calculation:

Net Promoter Score = % Promoters – %Detractors

Applying this calculation to identify detractors is of course exteremely important – but you simply cannot base your business decisions solely on an amount. The customer journey is dynamic one, and includes several touchpoints with your business along the way. In order to fully map your customer’s journey you have to be able to understand their experience at each one of these touchpoints: Why are these particular customers considered passive? Was it a bad experience with our brand? Did our company gain a bad reputation?

But just as important as knowing what the issues are, is knowing what’s keeping your customers happy — that is what are the characteristics of an active customer? Is it our great staff? Why do they love our product features so much? Your Net Promoter Score, though indicative of your support team’s performance at a high-level, only tells half the story.

What your Net Promoter Score Isn’t Telling You

In order to truly understand how your customers feel about your brand and your business overall, you need to tie your NPS results to a tool or solution that can provide you with the WHY to your WHAT. For instance a solution that can provides comprehensive sentiment analysis is an excellent way to know if your customers see your business in a negative, neutral or positive light. Let’s take another example using your NPS to illustrate this. Let’s suppose your results have revealed a particular high detractor score. This clearly indicates that some aspect of your customer service process is broken. The bigger question is: WHY are you seeing such high levels of customer churn? WHERE does your customer service process need improvement and at WHAT stage of the customer experience?

Sentiment analysis tools designed to make sense of large volumes of customer feedback, allow organizations to get useful insights about their current and future customers’ feelings towards a product or service. More specifically, whether that feedback is negative or positive, what topics of interests are discussed, customer experiences with staff, complaints or issues, and so much more.

Using Keatext, the customer support team of a large hotel chain wanted to know how a group of recent guests felt about their stay and overall experience. So, after running a really quick sentiment analysis, they quickly discovered that there was an overwhelming about of negative feedback associated with the subject of “ROOM”. Digging a bit deeper they identified exactly  what caused those negative reviews of the rooms: some found them to be smelly, unclean, or neglected.

Ok, now we’re getting somewhere.

As you can see, when you combine your NPS with a deeper analysis of your customer feedback you get a much more complete picture. You quickly learn what matters most to your customers and you can confidently base future business decisions on concrete evidence – not just the result of a simple subtraction.

It is precisely these types of insights that present customer support teams with important customer information beyond the Net Promoter Score— that they can use to resolve issues and improve customer engagement.

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