I recently watched Nimble’s CEO, Jon Ferrara, participate in a Google+ Hangout with the Influence Marketing guys: Danny Brown and Sam Fiorella. I enjoyed Jon’s passion for social CRM, and I appreciate Nimble’s approach, user interface, and willingness to integrate with other solutions. Mantis has our own Pulse Analytics monitoring and sentiment analysis product, so we share the same passion as Nimble for identifying and engaging the social customer.
Contrary to some of my own blog posts, “time of death” announcements for customer surveys would be premature. Surveys are still outstanding devices for getting in-depth, targeted feedback from your customers. You can even normalize the survey questions to provide structured results using a numeric scale or multiple-choice answers.
- An example of a numeric scale would be “on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being AWESOME, did you enjoy our product?”
- An example of a multiple choice response would be “After drinking our energy drink, would you a) recommend to a friend, or b) summarily categorize all energy drinks as nasty-tasting?
Since the responses are structured, it is very easy to aggregate and analyze the results. The feedback is also in a closed loop between the consumer and the brand, so brands can easily contain negative feedback. One of the main drawbacks with surveys is that they are strictly “opt-in” based upon brands soliciting feedback. I cannot remember the last time I filled out a customer survey.
In contrast, consumers frequently use social channels to express pleasure or displeasure with brands. They are providing brands a wealth of unsolicited and uncensored feedback – whether the brands like it or not! Consumers no longer have to carry a receipt back to a home computer to log in to a survey, and they do not require a pen to be handy. They just pick up their trusty mobile device, select their favorite social platform, and SHARE their sentiments about your brand to their entire social network!
But no need to panic, my friends! As they said in The Six Million Dollar Man – “We have the technology.” Great tools (like Nimble and Pulse Analytics!) allow brands to find these conversations and monitor them.
When you engage prospects and customers where they live and play online, you create a dynamic relationship that can stand the test of time, nurture trust between consumers and the brand, create positive consumer experiences, and encourage customer lifetime value.
When was the last time you filled out a customer survey? – I bet it’s been awhile. But I bet you provided unsolicited brand feedback on a social network or review site in the recent past, right? Don’t you wish brands would monitor that feedback, engage you as a valued consumer, and then take your input as a call to action?
Brian Vickery serves as Principal of Mantis Technology Group, Inc. His specialties include business intelligence and rapid application development.
Photo by ABC Television (eBay item photo front photo back) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons