Published April 13, 2016, updated Oct, 26 2021
Developing, executing and extracting value from NPS surveys is not without its challenges. These can include:
- Distributing the survey to a large customer base without pissing them off;
- Getting a high enough response rate to make the results matter;
- Getting an NPS reading in real-time so you can act to improve your business in real-time.
These challenges are heightened by the fact that most NPS reporting is periodic and ad hoc, with little foresight to what will be done with the results. The “result” is therefore a vanity metric that is of little use. For more on the NPS vanity trap see my previous blog Beyond Vanity Metrics: NPS and Customer Referral Rate.
I struggled with some of these challenges as I worked to develop an NPS program here at Klipfolio. One of my major early concerns was that I was going to disrupt our customer base (by adding yet another email to the pile they receive from us), and that those who would take the time to respond to the survey were more likely to be our brand champions - so the results would be skewed. In relation, I was concerned that I wouldn’t get a high enough response rate to make the results statistically significant; I was issuing the survey to cohorts of customers based on the month they signed up, and because at this stage in our business life cycle we don’t have thousands of new customers each month, I needed a pretty high response rate to make the results representative of the cohort as a whole.
These concerns led me to investigate whether it was possible to embed the NPS survey directly in an email. As things stood, customers had to click a link in the email we sent, to be taken to the online survey. The process took two clicks and a page load. Many customers opened the email, but never clicked the link. Some opened the email, clicked the link, but didn’t respond to the survey. I was confident we could improve the response rate if we put the survey right in the email - one click and a customer would be done. It would be as easy to answer the one click survey as it would to close the email. I asked around at Klipfolio - digital marketing, product management, development - to see if anyone had seen this done and the response I got was “nope”. And since time is money for a startup like ours, I stopped digging and continued to administer our NPS program haphazardly.
Then a few weeks ago I was introduced to AskNicely, one of our new technical partners. AskNicely is an app for getting real-time customer feedback based on the NPS framework, and yes, the app enables the embedding of the NPS survey directly into emails to customers. This one capability can help surveyor’s overcome or reduce three NPS challenges: (1) irritating customers, (2) getting a high enough response rate to make the results matter, and (3) reducing the survey response bias by making it more likely that detractors will complete the survey.
A fourth NPS challenge that AskNicely helps marketers overcome is (4) continuous NPS measurement. With AskNicely, you can build an automated NPS program triggered by customer actions or events logged in your CRM, e-commerce or email platform. For example, you can schedule NPS surveys to go out after a call with customer support, or after a specific customer milestone is recorded in your CRM. Setting up an automated NPS program with event triggers like these can give marketers, sales and customer retention specialists access to a constant stream of information surrounding customer satisfaction, loyalty and advocacy - a huge step up from the static data points that periodic surveys produce.
Finally, AskNicely enables (5) real-time NPS monitoring, which can support data driven decision making to improve business outcomes. AskNicely customers have access to an NPS dashboard that updates as new NPS surveys are completed, so businesses can see how they’re doing in real-time. Are NPS response rates generally higher in the afternoon? Is negative publicity hurting NPS today? What impact is the customer support program launched today having on NPS? Answers to all these questions and more can be made more accurate with real-time NPS reporting via AskNicely.
Developing, executing and extracting value from NPS surveys can be difficult, and they can be a waste of time if they don’t inform action. Tools like AskNicely can help you extract that value, and improve your business.
Check out our Klipfolio + AskNicely NPS Dashboard
Here’s a demo video on how to connect Klipfolio to AskNicely: