The Easiest Way to Grow Sales and Double Customer Loyalty – Send a Survey and Do NOTHING

Of course, I’m over-simplifying, but not really.  According to a Harvard Business Review Study called US Banking Customer Satisfaction Study written by Dr. Paul M. Dholakia and Vicki G. Morwitz, simply going through the process of running a customer satisfaction study will double customer loyalty.

So, here’s how it worked.

They took 1,000 customers and gave them a survey.  customer experience

Ummmm – that was it.  That’s all they did.  They did NOTHING.  Of course they also had another group of 1,000 customers who were NOT surveyed.  And guess what happened?

The group that received the survey was 50% less likely to cancel and three times more likely to buy something else from the company.

The lesson is simple — it’s not about acting — it’s about ASKING

How many times have you been in the conversation that criticizes the management team for doing surveys and doing nothing?  PLENTY!  Well, guess what — they were right!

But HOW?  WHY?  What’s going on?

As far as we can see, there are a few things going on here:

  • Running a survey says your company cares
  • A survey is really a touch to the customer, it’s you reaching out and communicating
  • Surveys are a vehicle to inform customers of new products
  • Just asking the question, creates and opinion in the mind of the customers

How to use your survey to drive loyalty and customer opinion

Now that you understand that your survey is more of a communication tool than a feedback tool, how should you structure it to get the most out of this phenomenon?

  • Overall, how satisfied are you with our company?
  • How satisfied are you with the quality of service?
  • How likely are you to refer us to a friend or family member?

A word of warning — these are not good ACTING questions.  In fact, they are terrible questions if you actually intend on making a change.  But if you want to engage with your customers and increase their trust in you and get them to buy stuff — this is definitely the way to go.

Whatever you do — DO NOT try to get fancy wit this.  You will most certainly hurt yourself in the process.

Here are a few Don’ts

  • DO NOT  make your survey too long.  That will piss them off and you’ll not only do a lot of unnecessary work, you’ll confuse your customers.
  • DO NOT ask questions that are unclear and ambiguous – such as “How would you rate or parking and our french fries?”
  • DO NOT make every question a required answer

Got it — Good — GO

There you have it.  This is an article right up my non-technical market research alley.  I realize I’ve been a little tongue-in-cheek about this, but the idea is to stop beating yourself up if you haven’t made every change your customer has requested in their feedback.

This is just one example of how by simply asking your customers for feedback you can increase loyalty and sales — BRILLIANT.

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