How to follow up on feedback from customer satisfaction surveys

“What!!! Why did they give me 6 out of 10 for support!” yelled Dave from the corner.

Dave had just received his Client Heartbeat scores for the month and one of his customers had given him a rating of 6 out of 10 for support.

From Dave’s response, you can obviously see he’s not too happy. Dave goes onto threaten to cancel their account, blah blah blah.

This is a great example of how not to do customer satisfaction surveys.

When doing customer satisfaction surveys, you need to be open to criticism. Not everyone is going to give you a 10/10 rating, and that’s good. You want feedback, you want ideas to improve your product or service. So these customers that are giving you sub-par ratings are actually the most useful, they provide actionable feedback you can learn from.

Watch the video:

In this post, I’m going to take you through how you should be responding to your customer satisfaction surveys.


Don’t take feedback personally

When you start getting feedback from your customer satisfaction surveys, you might take things too personally. For example, Dave works in Support, one of the questions his survey asked was directly related to the support his company offers (which is Dave’s department). In the scenario, Dave can’t take the feedback personally. Remember that the reason you are doing customer satisfaction surveys is to get feedback and find ways to improve your service and product.

Tip #1: Take all feedback holistically and make sure you don’t take any of it personally.


Call and follow up with specific customers

This is the most important thing to do when conducting your customer satisfaction surveys. Follow up!

With all this data and feedback flowing back to you, it’s now time to crack the whip and pick up the phone. I recommend you identify the customers ‘at risk’ or who have given you scores/rating that are lower than you wanted.

For instance, we recently ran the Client Heartbeat surveys on our customers here at Client Heartbeat and one of our customers gave us a rating of 2/10 for Education.

Now… that’s a big alarm bell for me.

My role here at Client Heartbeat is to educate our customers on topics including customer satisfaction, customer retention and customer loyalty. If one of our customers doesn’t feel like they are getting this education, I need to do something about it.

In this example, I picked up the phone and called the customer. By talking to him, it turns out that he hasn’t be on our newsletter and wasn’t aware of the Client Heartbeat Blog. As a result, I sent him through a couple of our best articles on customer retention, and subscribed him to our Client Heartbeat Newsletter.

Moving forward, he will receive all the education I am pushing through the blog and it will help educate him on what he needs to be doing to improve customer satisfaction and start creating loyal customers.

Tip #2: Following up is key, use it as an opportunity to learn more about your customers.


Make changes and see the results

Last but not least, act on the feedback you receive. There is no point in conducting customer satisfaction surveys and not acting on the feedback you receive.

I recommend focusing on looking at key trends in your customer feedback and come up with one to three insights that you can act on. Taking us back to my example of receiving a rating of two for education, how do you think I would act on this feedback?

My first move would be to scour through all our users and see how many are subscribed to the Client Heartbeat Newsletter. Next step, I will want to send an email out to all our existing customers who aren’t on the list, and ask them if they want to subscribe. It is important to take a double-opt in approach here.

Tip #3: You want use an email marketing tool that can let you send a confirmation email to your customer and have them click the link to confirm their subscription. Try Aweber, Mailchimp, Signupto or Campaign Monitor.

Once this is done, they’ll now be on my Client Heartbeat Newsletter email list and will receive all future educational blog posts, video and whitepapers around the topics of customer satisfaction, retention and loyalty.


Related: Want to join the Client Heartbeat Newsletter email list so you never miss a blog post like this? Click here.

In wrapping up this post, I want to emphasize that customer satisfaction surveys are about getting customer feedback and you should try to take an open-minded approach to it.

Companies that can listen to their customers and take their feedback to make actionable changes and improvements to their products and businesses are the companies that will garner a following of long lasting, loyal customers.

Gordon Tan

Gordon Tan is an entrepreneur based in Australia who has started and sold multiple technology companies with a combined value of $150m. This included a client satisfaction benchmarking platform which gave him first hand insight into the best practices of over 6,000 businesses. After retiring at 35 he is now a recognised thought leader on winning and retaining clients - His two passions: making clients the heartbeat of a business no matter what the product or service and this blog.

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