In addition, when I discussed social media analytics best practices, I explained that your predefined SMM strategy must be the basis for deciding the right SMM KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) for your business. If you wish to dig deeper into this topic, I invite you to read this article Social Media Analytics For Dummies (1) – Goodbye ROI & Welcome KPIs!.
Listening to customers is no exception and should follow the same rule: First, have solid business objectives in place. Then, filter customers’ insights against them. This brings us to very important set of questions:
What are the different types of customer reviews? Which ones should you give highest priority to? What is the appropriate action to take on each of them?
I brainstormed the most common types of customer reviews and will present them in order of highest priority (1 being the highest). I will also indicate the appropriate action(s) you need to take.
1. Repetitive Or Viable Complaints
Resolving serious issues in existing products should be given higher priority than developing new ones. That’s a no-brainer because if your customers are unhappy with your existing services, chances are slim that they will be interested in new offering from you.
On top of that, they will share their unhappiness (and sometimes fury!) with the world, putting your brand reputation at stake! To minimize the damaging effects of such complaints, you need to take immediate actions in two cases:
Common Complaints: When 10+ of your customers scream about the same issue, do something about it!
Viable Complaints: If even one angry customer had solid reason(s) to believe that your product sucks, s/he is right!
Appropriate Reactions To Customers’ Complaints
Respond immediately to angry customers, indicating that you will take fast action to recover the issue and don’t settle for comforting words: Fulfill your promise as fast as you can. (In some cases, you may want to share the exact actions you will be taking with your customers as this gives them a much-needed reassurance that you are serious about their complaints)
2. Viable Enhancements/New Product Ideas
In many cases, customers’ reviews may include enhancements on existing products or new product ideas. If these were in line with your current (or future) business objectives, rest assured that you are on the right track.
Appropriate Reactions To Customers’ Viable Ideas
Start by thanking the customer for taking the time to share his/her great ideas and assure him/her that you will work on adding the required enhancement/new product. Here comes a very important step that most businesses miss out: Take note of the customers’ info in order to inform them when their requests are readily available.
3. “Fictional” Enhancements/New Product Ideas
Sometimes customers could come up with the weirdest product ideas that you know you will never consider under any circumstances!
Appropriate Reactions To Customers’ Fictional Ideas
Again, start by thanking the customers for taking the time to share their ideas and for their sincere interest in helping you produce great products. Also, encourage them to share any future ideas they may have. You may also ask them about their experience with your current product. In this case, you want to give the customers a comforting feeling that they are valued and appreciated WITHOUT giving false promises.
Thanks to social media, you have many tools at your disposal to “eavesdrop” at customers’ buzz about your brand. Leverage social media to measure their reviews against your business goals. If they sound viable, act on them. If not, toss them away but, in all cases, make your customers feel that they are valued and listened to.
One last thought that popped to mind: If many customers pitched the same fictional ideas, perhaps it may not be as impossible as you imagined! In other words, there is nothing wrong with tweaking your business objectives based on massive customers’ demand WITHOUT losing sight of the big picture. What do you think?
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