The power of client feedback: are you collecting it effectively?

By Richie Almeida, Integrated Marketing Specialist on March 6, 2020

Your clients have the potential to lead you to greater success. If you’re not listening to them,
you could be missing out.

“I want to speak to a manager.” We all know that one customer who’s quick to get angry or complain, but who would’ve thought that this same person could be the unsung hero for your agency?

Customer experience should always be on your list of top priorities. After all, a satisfied client could set off a domino effect that could positively impact you and your agency. Pleased clients could lead to earned trust, loyalty, more referrals and (hopefully) new business—I think it’s safe to say your clients could be one of your greatest allies.

How can you make sure your clients are truly happy? The answer is simple—just ask.

Asking a client for feedback not only lets them know that you truly care about them and the service you’re providing, but it opens up a window of opportunity to collect valuable nuggets of information to keep them satisfied and loyal.

The impact of satisfied, loyal clients can’t be stressed enough, but I’ll let the cold, hard facts do the talking:

Are you ready to dive deep into the minds of your clients? We thought so. Let’s go over a few ways to effectively gather their thoughts.

Smart surveys

Yes, we know conducting surveys is nothing new, but let me ask you this: are your surveys effectively gathering useful, honest information from your clients? See, there’s more to surveys than just creating one, throwing it in an email and hitting send. You have to ask yourself a few questions first.  

What’s the overall goal of your survey? How long is it? How many closed-ended questions are you asking compared to open-ended ones? These are just 3 aspects to pay attention to amongst others, but it’s a good starting point. Consider these basics:

  • What are you trying to learn about your client’s experience? Now use that answer to come up with a clear, reasonable goal for your survey. Let’s say you’re noticing more clients taking their business elsewhere, so you turn to a survey for answers. Your goal could focus on general customer satisfaction among your clients, or you could do better than that. A more precise goal would be “to use a lost client’s feedback to assess strengths and weakness and ultimately improve satisfaction and retention.”

  • You have a busy life to lead, and your clients are no different. SurveyMonkey data finds that the more questions you include in your survey, the higher the respondent drop-off rate from start to finish. Keep your surveys succinct and watch more and more of your respondents fully complete them.

  • Closed-ended questions (think multiple choice) are much easier to answer compared to open-ended questions but they both have their place. Is your service meeting client’s expectations? A simple yes or no multiple choice question can give you an answer. Want to delve deeper and understand why? An open-ended question could be your best bet for eliciting more detailed information and adding a human voice to your results. Keep in mind: open-ended questions take much longer to answer, so consider including only one or two to conclude your survey.

Social Listening

Are you familiar with social listening? Well, considering how much people love to praise and scrutinize brands online, you should be. Social listening is the monitoring of your social channels for feedback, direct mentions and discussions of relevant trends to gain insight and keep your customer experience strategies on the right path.

Monitoring direct mentions can keep you aware of what clients are saying about you and your agency (both positively and negatively), and can give you the opportunity to directly contact clients to gain more insight on how to improve your operations.

Let’s not forget about the competition. Take a look at what others are saying about your competitors and ask yourself: what’s driving customer satisfaction and dissatisfaction? How can you ultimately stand out in a sea of options? The answers could be a search away.

That’s just the tip of the iceberg. Many social platforms allow you to engage with your clients through surveys and polls, and Facebook Live gives you the opportunity to host Q&A sessions to gain more insight on preferences and areas to improve.

Turn to texting

In the digital world we live in today, our phones are always in reach. Why not take advantage of this by collecting feedback through text message? Texting can be far less formal compared to sending an email or making a phone call, and this isn’t a bad thing. See it as an opportunity to connect with clients on a more personal level.

Still not sold on the strength of SMS? Well, you should probably know that 90 percent of all text messages are read within three minutes of being received and the average open rate of a text message is 98 percent, compared to just 22 percent for email.

The advice of a client is fundamental to a business’ success and if you aren’t gathering this feedback, now is the time to start. Already doing some digging? Let us know what initiatives are working for you in the comments!

Advice from a burnout survivor

Richie Almeida, Integrated Marketing Specialist

Richie is an avid movie goer with an addiction to Sour Patch Kids. If he isn’t at the movies, he is at the gym or on a hike trying to make up for his bad eating habits.

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