February 20

Thirty years later, thirty-one percent of online users ALWAYS post after a bad marketplace experience. On average, an initial negative experience reaches just over seven hundred people in the first twenty-four hours, before re-posts or re-tweets.

Roughly eighty percent of all customer service Tweets are negative. One million people view Tweets regarding a customer service every week. That’s eight hundred thousand bad experiences. Every. Week. And that’s just on Twitter.

Customer opinion is no longer a “critical factor,” but the single difference between growth and bankruptcy. If these numbers tell you anything, it’s that you’re not just carving your name in the call center industry. You’re in the cheerleader business. You need to make fans of your customers: customers who will march down Main Street for you, carry your flag on their shoulders, ignore negative critique and stand up for you, either in person or online. Don’t just develop an advocate. You need to develop an army.

The KPI for this is Net Promoter Score, or NPS. NPS calculates the percentage of customers who say they will recommend your product or company, while subtracting those who say they will not, and eliminating those who are neutral. For example, if seventy percent say they WOULD recommend your center, ten percent say they are passive, and twenty percent say they would NOT recommend you, you remove the passive ten percent, and subtract twenty negatives from the seventy positives, giving you a score of fifty. At the very least, you want a positive score: anything over zero. Fifty is generally considered the bar for excellence.

You can’t just hope your way into NPS; you need to go out there and get it. Be proactive. Reach out to your customers. You’re going to need to evaluate the best mechanism to follow up as effectively and unintrusively as possible, and you’ll need to develop surveys that custom-fit your market.
And, above all else, provide an amazing service with an amazing customer experience to back it up.
NPS tells you where you stand, but remember: It’s the first metric you need, not the last. You’ll also need supplemental scores that measure degrees of loyalty, customer opportunities to recommend or dissuade, and a customer’s likelihood to return.

Still, because of today’s online word of mouth, without a strong NPS measurement, you’re just hoping customers will like what you provide as much as you do, eliminating your potential to carry your company around the globe along with your reputation.