WHAT IS AN OPERATIONAL LOYALTY PROGRAM?
We often meet organizations that explain that they are already using NPS as, for example, part of an existing customer survey or an annual questionnaire. There is basically nothing wrong with that, but what we focus on is how a loyalty program provides far greater value when implemented with a simple and effective methodology such as NPS and across the entire customer relationship.
Basically, it is when a customer loyalty program becomes a clearly defined process and an ongoing program, rather than an annual project that becomes an integral part of customer-facing work processes.
An example of the first step towards a more operational customer loyalty could be when the full- or semi-annual customer survey, which is typically sent to all customers, is changed to an ongoing measurement. This could be done by dividing up the customer base and asking fewer at a time throughout the year.
There are many benefits and gains to be gained from a more operational loyalty program, where loyalty measurements and customer feedback come in smaller portions. This means that the program becomes dynamic and more relevant. The hand on the customer barometer does not only move once a year and the interest in the program, and thus in customer focus, increases throughout the organization.
Another very significant benefit of operational customer loyalty is the follow-up. If only rarely measured, the follow-up task becomes a work hump, which will disrupt the daily work and the follow-up will probably also be unnecessarily delayed in relation to the answer. With more drip responses, the follow-up will become a natural part of the employees’ everyday lives and the customers will feel the follow-up more relevant with faster follow-up.
In the ideal operational program, the relationship measurement (the overall NPS score) is thus spread out over the year. The timing can either be random, or even better, then it is timed in relation to the relationship’s “lifecycle”. It could be X number of months after a customer has arrived, X number of days since last purchase, X number of days before an agreement is renewed, etc. We will discuss later how this type of measurement can be automated.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN RELATION SURVEYS AND TRANSACTIONS/TOUCHPOINT SURVEYS?
In continuation of the timed relationship measurement, the question arises about the difference between relationship measurements and transaction / touchpoint measurements. If a customer is asked about loyalty and feedback immediately after a transaction, the NPS rating is likely to be affected by the current experience. The customer’s subsequent comment will also largely be related to what the customer has just experienced.
It can be used to great advantage to build an overview of customers’ experiences in specific transactions / touchpoints. Finally, these should not be confused with the overall relationship measurement and NPS, as it is an expression of the whole of the relationship and not the individual experience.
Thus, relational NPS and transaction NPS should be completely separated. For a majority of our customers, transaction NPS has actually completely replaced traditional questionnaire surveys with many, and for the customer, less relevant questions.
GAIN MUCH MORE – WITH MUCH LESS
Almost every day we are in dialogue with customers who want to use NPS, but who feel the need to ask further specific questions. Often because they have done so historically, and now they have added NPS. However, they fear that with a pure NPS-based solution, they will lack answers to specific questions.
It is basically a bad solution to mix questionnaire surveys with a simple and effective loyalty program. First of all, it is extremely difficult to make a study with more specific questions, really operational.
The organization is drowning in data and automation in particular is being made more difficult. Secondly, the relationship is burdened with cumbersome answers and it is difficult to ask frequently across the customer journey. With an NPS-based survey, the customer is ready to respond more often and in particular make his unreserved and objective opinion known in the free comment.
This is where almost all customers experience that with a simpler survey, they actually get more feedback, because the customer has the focus and profit, to answer what exactly matters to the individual. It is from the outside in and not the other way around.
CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE RADAR
With an NPS-based loyalty program, it is thus possible to reap input from customers, both in relation and transaction / touchpoints. Good and bad experiences can be identified across the customer life cycle.
We see it as your customer experience radar, which keeps an eye on experiences across the customer journey, and where you can engage with both individual action and transformation.
Is your customer experience radar also only switched on a few times a year? Imagine the military or others using their radar in the same way!