Use NPS® to boost your advocacy program in 3 Steps

TLDR: Advocates. References. Promoters. These customers are “gold” to your business’ ability to grow, and do so efficiently. However, the complaint I often hear is that there aren’t enough of them in hand. If you take a purposeful approach to your Net Promoter℠ program, you can meaningfully grow your advocate list.

NPS® surveys identify advocates by definition

Companies often focus on their NPS scores solely as a barometer of the health of the business. However, the beauty of the Net Promoter System is that it spots potential advocates in the Promoter responses.

If somebody says they are “likely to recommend your product” then why not ask them to do just that?(!)

Increase your survey frequency and sampling

If you want to maximize your chances to discover advocates, then you have to cast the widest possible net.

  • Survey everybody. There are lots of promoters out there, but you need to go looking. Don’t sample just a subset of your user base with surveys, or you’ll pass over the others who could also help you.
  • Survey through multiple channels, including in-application. Response rates from in-application surveys in particular can drive the highest response rates you’ll get. Of course, other users may prefer email, so use both channels to maximize the total responses you get.
  • Survey every user up to four times a year. You want multiple chances to collect a response. Even with an overall survey response rate as high as 25%, that means you’re likely to get just one response from each user each year.

Have a call to action and a program

Of course, spotting potential advocates in the Promoter responses is the first step. Next, consider the call to action for these people. What do you want them to do?

Advocacy and reference programs can be very simple or robust. Simple examples might include:

  • Liking your company’s Facebook page
  • Following your company on Twitter
  • Referring-a-friend

Advanced examples might include:

  • Tweeting about their purchase (B2C)
  • Sharing their purchase on Facebook (B2C)
  • Providing references to other prospective customers (B2B)
  • Providing references to industry analysts (B2B)
  • Speaking on your behalf at an industry conference (B2B)
  • Agreeing to an ROI case study (B2B)

If you don’t have a program in place, start a simple one now so that your call to action is super-clear to your Promoters. You can get fancy later.

A quick and easy way to get started with your program is to build a spreadsheet that tracks the following:

  • Customer Name/Company Name/Contact Info
  • NPS Score
  • Type of evangelism event customer is willing to engage in
  • Date of last evangelism event (to avoid overuse of your advocates)

Final thoughts

Half the battle in maximizing your advocates’ contribution to growth is to find them in the first place. NPS is the perfect vehicle to do so. Push past the naysayers (“we shouldn’t bother our customers so much”) to get the folks who can really help you grow.

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