Customer Experience 2 – Listen

Our benchmark study in 2009/10 found that 100% of the ’best’ organisations collected customer feedback where as under half of the ’rest’ did so.

Once the programme has been set up and aligned to the key priorities of the organisation it is time to start work listening to customers. So what are the key considerations for an effective approach?

Start with understanding what your customers value?

Identify the key touch points between your organisation and target customer groups. Understand the ‘customer journey’ will help to define aspects that create value in the relationship and ask your customers about what is important to them. Use this feedback to shape your key measures.

What to measure?

Some organisations measure the overall strategic relationship with key customers, annually. Others will collect more regular, detailed feedback that is focused on transactional activity. We have found that a blend of each approach provides a more complete picture. Ask only about things that are important to customers. Don’t let internal departments develop a “super  questionnaire” of questions that is irrelevant to the customer journey. You must decide whether to use a bespoke detailed or more simple approach (such as Net Promoter) Which will provide a clear and true picture of your reality?

How to plan your fieldwork?

So many decisions here. Decide on how to set up your “listening posts” using different formats including web, telephone and face to face meetings. Decide on the fieldwork strategy most appropriate to the value of customers and your budget. Consider the number of questions you ask, survey frequency/length and understand the available resources to complete analysis. Put in place an effective testing and review approach that will allow you to monitor progress. Then monitor it in a disciplined manner.


1. Define the customer journey

2. Understand what customers value in the relationship and measure this

3. Collect regular and timely feedback through blending appropriate  measures and channels

4. Resist the lure of developing a questionnaire by committee.


Also in this Customer Experience series :

Stage 1 – Strategic Alignment

Stage 3 – Understand

Stage 4 – Focus

Stage 5 – Engage


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