Stop Surveying (And Ignoring) Your Customers

I just ran into a great (negative) example of my 6th CXtipDon’t waste customers’ time asking them questions unless you are prepared to act on what they say.

1511_TextMsgSurveyWe were on vacation at a very nice resort (the name of the resort is not relevant for my discussion). During our second day at the hotel, we received a text message that led to the interaction in the graphic on the right.

To summarize, we were asked to rate our experience on a scale of 1 to 10. We gave it a 7, and listed a number of problems that we had run into. We got back a text saying it was great to hear and asked us “what could we do next time to make sure your experience is excellent?

We said to read the previous text (with our list of problems) and we have not heard back since.

Here’s another way to tell this story.

Resort leader(s) decided that it was a good idea to survey its customers and get some data. Company asks customer to give a number. When it gets its number, the company sends back a standard question and ignores the response.

The results:

  • Customer feels ignored, lowering his overall experience.
  • Company sees this as a success… it has a number!

It’s Time To Stop Surveying Customers

Over the last few years, it seems as if masses of companies have decided to start “measuring” customer experience. They seem to view this as a strategy. It’s not!

Instead of surveying customers (which leads to these types of dysfunctional interactions), focus on improving customer experience. As I said in the CXtip above, don’t waste everyone’s time unless you are committed to making improvements.

Instead of surveying customers, ask customers questions that help you make their experiences better. And do something with what you learn.

The bottom line: Stop surveying, start improving.

Written by 

I'm an experience (XM) management catalyst; helping organizations improve results by engaging the hearts and minds of their employees, customers, and partners. I enjoy researching and speaking about leading-edge XM topics. I lead the Qualtrics XM Institute, which is the world's best job. We're igniting a global community of XM Professionals who are inspired and empowered to radically improve the human experience. To achieve this goal, my team focuses on thought leadership, training, and community building. My work is driven by a set of fundamental beliefs: 1) Everything starts and ends with human beings, so you need to understand how people think, feel, and behave; 2) XM is a discipline that needs to be woven throughout an organization's entire operating fabric; and 3) Building the XM discipline requires a combination of culture, competency, and technology.

3 thoughts on “Stop Surveying (And Ignoring) Your Customers”

  1. A simple yet effective example used to get a point across. It is the perfect depiction of what companies do wrong and what they must do in order to improve customer experiences.

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