“Double-click” to get the most from your NPS® surveys

TLDR: Net Promoter Score℠ (NPS®) surveys can help you decode many things about your business.  Most people start by looking at the global NPS trend.

To get the most value from your analysis, I recommend “double-clicking” on your NPS results and looking more closely at what’s below the surface.

Level 1 analysis: for your entire account base

Looking at NPS across your entire account base helps you see the big picture.  If you’re new to NPS, it’s an optimal place to start.

At this level, you can answer these questions:

  • What’s our overall NPS right now?
  • How is our NPS trending?
  • What are the top 3-5 themes of feedback?

Level 2 analysis: for segments of customers

Not every customer segment is alike when it comes to NPS.  Some segments are more or less loyal than your global average.

The first challenge is to understand where the variances are, so that you can uncover why they exist.

To find the variances, answer the same questions as above:

  • What’s our overall NPS right now?
  • How is it trending?
  • What are the top 3-5 themes of feedback?

……but look at these answers for each customer segment. Examples of potential segmentation:

  • By geography or region
  • By sales channel
  • By account tier
  • By product sold
  • By customer vertical / industry

Here’s an example from my past.  We knew that customer loyalty was lower in Europe than other regions.  We then narrowed our analysis down to Germany, which was itself one of our larger markets inside Europe.  We noted that within Germany, one distribution channel underperformed others when it came to customer loyalty.

So, a large portion of the European loyalty variance was in Germany and in one sales channel.

Upon further inspection, we realized that the quality of sales enablement in this channel was lacking. Salespeople weren’t selling well-qualified deals or accurately representing our product features.

With the root cause in hand, we knew to focus on better sales enablement and certification in this region.

Variances can also have another purpose. They also help you spot the most loyal customer segments. This can be a strong clue about your ideal customer profile and how to sign up more of the same.

Level 3 analysis: for one account at a time

To paraphrase Mitt Romney, “Accounts are people too”.  That is, accounts are a collection of people, each of whom can have a different perspective about your company.  

By looking across NPS responses for an account, you can better answer these questions:

  • What is the health of this account, as measured by NPS scores and their trend?
  • What is the political landscape within the account? Who are the internal advocates and potential enemiesAre the scores narrowly clustered (a consensus view of your company) or widely distributed (a mixed bag of support)?

Level 4 analysis: for each user

There are a couple of ways to engage individual users that will help your NPS analysis:

  • Reach out users who gave a score but left no comments, to learn why they gave their score
  • Reach out to users who provided comments to clarify and deepen your understanding of the feedback

Depending on your business size and resources, you might not be able to follow up personally to every survey respondent. However, follow-up helps your company in two ways.  First, customers believe you’re listening when you acknowledge their feedback. Even an automated thank-you is better than nothing.  Second, you’ll learn much more from live conversations than survey analytics alone.

While the global NPS score is a great starting point, there any many insights to be uncovered by drilling down into subsets of your customer base (segments, accounts and even individuals). By spotting the variances, you can discover specific opportunities to improve your business, and particularly loyal customer segments.

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