I have worked with many agencies that have a strong focus on their customers. In a true customer centric business, the team rally together to ensure their internal systems and process are supporting what they tell their clients. I have worked in many agencies where they have made a commitment to their clients through a service agreement. If they commit to returning phone calls to their customers within two hours, they ensure they have a system to both measure this and deliver on it. Another example would be, they commit to never having a phone call go to voicemail during business hours. To support this, they would invest in systems that allow a call to be routered to people who are available to answer them. While this is great, how do you know that you are actually delivering to your clients? How do you know whether your clients see value in these initiatives you are putting in place?
Having a robust feedback loop for your customers is crucial to ensure you are not just delivering on what you think is great, but also what your clients think is great. Use a survey system that allows you to benchmark the agency. The Net Promoter Score (NPS) is a customer service survey program used world wide. It allows your clients to rank you with a score. The agency can then use this score as both a benchmark against other businesses but most importantly, as a measure of improvement for the agency itself. The survey also offers a short space of free text that allows your customer to offer feedback.
There are three key areas the agency needs to consider when seeking feedback. Firstly, are you delivering on what you have promised? The survey is great way to measure all those client facing initiatives that you have put in place, to go the extra mile for your clients. It is an important way to sanity check those initiatives and use the feedback to tweak them if need be.
Maybe there are other initiatives that your clients would like to see the agency doing. The survey feedback is also a great source of new ideas for the agency to implement. I wouldn’t just implement everything your customers tell you to do, but look for trends in the survey data. If one client suggests free ice cream for all clients, I wouldn’t give all your clients free ice cream, but if 20 clients did, it might be worth considering.
Finally, are you surveying all your former clients as they leave? This is fertile ground for customer feedback. Your client feedback tends to be very raw once they leave the agency, which allows you to really analyses this feedback for potential changes to customer facing services.
To round off your business you need to ensure your clients are receiving what they want. Sometimes the agency comes up with some great ideas, other times, your client may not see value in them. Surveying your customers is truly the only way to measure and improve on this.