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You are here: Home / CRM Contributed Content / Converting Detractors into Promoters
 How To Convert Detractors into Promoters
How To Convert Detractors into Promoters
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One critical component for business success and customer satisfaction is knowing how to convert detractors into promoters. Here's some smart advice from Retently on turning negatives into positives, to help grow your business.

Today's consumers have a huge role in either growing your business exponentially through word of mouth and loving your company or becoming a viral scrutiny for your brand with a ton of criticism, creating negative word of mouth.

The fundamentals of scaling customer satisfaction that helps all businesses to grow is to understand the basics regarding how to convert detractors into promoters.

First and foremost let's define what they are:

Detractors - someone who is unhappy with your product, service or company at that moment in time
Promoters - raging fans that will refer your business to their friends or colleagues.

Those 2 basic terms along with "Passives" are often referred in the concept of Net Promoter Score.

For the sake of this specific article, we are going to focus purely on the framework of turning detractors into promoters.

1. Detractors Identification

Top 2 ways of identifying detractors are these metrics:

Customer Satisfaction Surveys - CSAT (Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT) is measured by asking "how customers rate the recent business experience on the scale of 1-5?")

Net Promoter Score - NPS (Net Promoter Score is measured by asking "On the scale of 0-10, how likely are you to recommend [company] to a friend or colleague?")

A lower score on the CSAT in the short term can mean that a customer is more likely to be a detractor. While in the NPS framework, the detractors are classified from the scores of 0 to 6.

2. How To Turn Detractors into Promoters

Close the Feedback Loop - With detractors, the key to closing the feedback loop is using any channels or systems possible with speed to develop customized solutions for their problems. Acting on the feedback in this fashion will demonstrate to your customers that you actually care about their issues and you put their business first. For maximum efficiency, replying in less than 1 hour will increase your results to close the loop and increase the chance of converting a detractor into a promoter.

A great practice is to include their name, company name, and portofolio item, to engage on a more personal level and show your customers that you know how your solution is designed for them specifically. On different high volume events that repeat themselves, for example a detractor just offering a score without feedback, you can use automation with a personalized flow to save you time and actually get more reasonable feedback that you can act on later. Feel free to use a creative approach with a bit of more manual research for your customers to close the loop and show you can go to the next level of customer care and commitment.

Again, at the end of the day, speed and personalized approach trumps everything in this step. Always thank them at the end of closing the feedback loop and leave the conversation open as your customers can need extra help.

Encourage with Multiple Channels - Make a huge hub of possibilities and leading call-to-actions so that customers can leave feedback on your articles, newsletters, SMS, surveys, in-web surveys, social media, directly, demos, customer support and many other processes included in your business. With this, you will increase the percentage of customers opening up and interacting with your brand where they are most comfortable.

Engagement in multiple channels will require a manual approach but will introduce your customers to more awareness of your brand. Additionally, what you can do is make your company available with full access to company information such as phone number, email address, social media, address of your offices on your main webpage and all your social media platforms you are active on. A best practice you can also use for this step is to have an amazing customer success rep who will go fully into details with all your detractors -- following-up, reaching out for discovery product market fit and flows, receiving actionable feedback. The role of the customer success manager will be to provide the human aspect of a practical conversation channel with your customers that can eventually uncover specific problems of the business model or product in the initial stage, before going into scaling.

Delight Detractors - The third step includes active listening and being on the same page with customers, solving their issues in a personalized manner, and then over-delivering with more actions so the detractors change their mind because of how positive you made them feel. Over-delivering is critical as well, meaning you can include a special offer for them, offer a special feature or custom subscription they need that your team doesn't do too often for other customers. Another practice you can use is having a workflow follow-up sequence of consistent engagement for them, by taking the time and analyzing their actions on a social network and/or on your website, in the timeframe they have been most active.

A good way to delight detractors is reaching out to them when they don't expect it with a personalized letter, let's say on weekends with a small gift. Eventually, this will make them feel special and understand the value of your brand. What other customer centric companies use to delight detractors is actually to have top management executives get involved in the customer support or satisfaction. For example, the Executive Chairman of Starbucks, Howard Schultz made a huge commitment to go from store to store to train their employees and interview customers who bought Starbucks in the store about their experience and feedback, trying to make an impact on the spot and influence people to convert them from detractors to promoters.

Give your detractors high priority; respect their boundaries; listen carefully to their feedback with engage; act with the best solution; over-deliver with your service, product, and skills; and, invite them to take a deeper look into your company culture.

To reduce detractors as much as possible, companies need to invest in customer satisfaction tools to analyze & determine why a customer became a detractor, and to start to dig until they find the real reason(s).

Just to start with the most basic and the easiest customer satisfaction tool, companies can sign up with Retently, an NPS Software which provides all the features & benefits a company needs, from NPS survey customization to survey reports & trends.

About Retently

Retently started its journey in early 2015, when a group of successful entrepreneurs from the data science, customer success and telecom industries came together to build a framework that would change the way companies measure and improve their customer satisfaction.

Located in Mountain View, California and Chisinau, Moldova, Retently is changing the way businesses understand and interact with their customers using Net Promoter Score®.

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