A Voice of Customer (VOC) program aims to gather and analyze customer insights, allowing you to identify trends and strategies to improve customer experience and deliver positive business outcomes. In simpler terms, VOC offers a way to give your customers a voice within your organization.
Organizations that have well-developed VOC programs consider feedback from every customer, respond immediately, and ultimately use what they learn to make improvements across departments.
Today, we’re sharing how you can leverage VOC data to improve customer service.
Understand Voice of Customer capture methods
In order to leverage VOC data, you have to ensure your customers are giving you feedback, and that you’re capturing it. Feedback can come in many different forms and be captured through a variety of channels.
Generally, VOC feedback falls into one of three categories:
- Direct feedback: Direct feedback comes when a customer knows the organization is listening, such as providing feedback in a Net Promoter Score (NPS) survey.
- Indirect feedback: When a customer gives indirect feedback, they talk about the company, but not necessarily to the company. Their feedback might come in the form of a tweet, for example.
- Inferred feedback: Inferred feedback is based on how customers use your products and services. For example, the number of times they use your services, contact customer service or buy from your company.
All of these feedback methods should be considered when compiling VOC data. After all, what a customer says directly to you may be different than what they say on a social media platform. Without considering all three types of feedback, you won’t get a good view into your customers’ holistic perspective.
Choose how and when to communicate Voice of Customer data internally
Once you begin capturing feedback from customers, it’s essential to communicate what you learn at a regular cadence. This is the point of VOC–you not only want to hear what customers say but also make sure that this information is disseminated within your organization.
Choose a channel
Many companies choose to use email as their go-to platform for communicating VOC data. However, many support teams find it easier to disseminate this information via chat tools (like HipChat or Slack) or via internal Wiki platforms.
Choose a cadence
You must decide how often you want to update your team with new data. Once per month is a good place to start, as this is long enough to record meaningful changes. You might also decide to update your service team once per week, but update your product, sales, and marketing teams at a different cadence.
Choose your audience
It’s important for many people within your organization to have an understanding of the customer’s voice. Some organizations opt to send this data to everyone. Others opt to keep it within customer-facing teams, such as sales, marketing, support, and product.
Check out the example below of a Voice of Customer (VOC) internal communications plan.
We send emails once per month to sales, marketing, and support teams.
These emails include:
- Current customer feedback scores (NPS, CES, and CSAT).
- Notable changes and considerations with these scores.
- 3-5 quotes from customers who received support.
- 2-3 customer trends we noticed this month.
- Improvement plans (if any).
- We keep emails short, so they don’t overwhelm.
- When including improvement plans, we’re specific about who is responsible.
- Amy (Head of CX) sends the email each month, with support from Jackson (Support Manager).
Come up with a strategic plan
In order to use VOC data effectively, you must come up with a strategic plan for listening to customers, following up, and ultimately making improvements to the customer experience.
First, you must make sure you’re listening to customer feedback. Your plan for listening should include the channels where customers regularly give feedback (surveys, social media platforms, support chats), as well as how often you’re responding to and searching for this feedback.
Secondly, you need a plan for following up with your customers. When a customer gives you feedback, how do you respond to it? And, how fast do you respond? You’ll need to decide what channel to use to address feedback, and equip your customer service team with scripts and helpful hints on what to say.
Ultimately, collecting VOC data isn’t helpful unless you use it to make systematic improvements to your source process. But in order to make these improvements, you need a plan for how you’ll implement them, how you’ll prioritize, and how fast you’ll act. Some companies may be constantly making improvements, while others may choose to prioritize improvements on a quarterly or annual basis.
Leveraging Voice of Customer at your organization
Your company is successful because of your customers, so they should have a voice within your organization.
By leveraging VOC data, you can respond to customers effectively, include your team in the support process, and ultimately improve the overall experience. As a result, you’re likely to have happier customers, reduction in churn, and a more profitable business.