Improve the relationship between my company and customers


(Alessio Fattorini) #1

I’m doing some research about a new challenge. My company is trying to improve the relationship with their customers and I don’t know if a community is an answer.
I started with an internal survey, asking my colleagues which could be the benefits of that improved relationship: for the Company (first part of the survey - retention, loyalty, ecc. ) and for the customers. (second part - be acknowledged, be heard, be awarded, ecc… )
For both, I listed some benefits asking to evaluate the importance (and impact on the relationship)

I plan to have a phone interview with my customers too, in order to validate our ideas and thoughts. I want to use the second part of the survey.
Any idea on that? Did you tackle something like that before? How would you validate your ideas?

(Sarah Hawk) #2

It’s a great idea to talk to your customers, but I’d be pretty careful about going in to validate existing ideas – you already have bias.

For clarity, are the customers that you are planning on talking to already community members?

(Richard Millington) #3

@ale_fattorini I think the first step here is to define what ‘improved relationship’ would be in terms of metrics.

Would this be improved customer satisfaction with products/services? Improve sentiment towards the brand etc?
Surveys can measure both pretty well. If you’re going down that road I would definitely make sure to try to define what those relationships are in metric terms and how they would be measured.

If it’s improved communication, then what would they be? Getting useful feedback, product ideas, or notification of problems etc? Each of these are possible to track in metrics. Some of this ties into the empathy work we did recently too.

It sounds like you’ve generally got both of these sorted though. Phone interviews tend to be better to develop hypotheses to validate through a survey to the broader group (as opposed to validating hypotheses you have with surveys). The problem with phone interviews is, as @HAWK says, it’s very easy to come away with any viewpoint you choose. Two people can have exactly the same call and come away with entirely different opinions.

Phone interviews work really well to get ideas to test, rework the language/wording you use, probe deeper into the mindset of customers…and then extract ideas to validate with the broader group. So I’d use them that way and then use a survey to validate (or refute) findings.

(Alessio Fattorini) #4

Sure, I’m looking for priorities and what is valuable for who, trying to avoid bias

Yes, they have. It didn’t work at the moment, I don’t know if because it’s too technical and too focus on the product or just the “platform”: Freshdesk forum. The platform doesn’t help indeed.

That’s my interviews’ main goal! I’d like to understand what a better relationship means for my customers and company . Tech people would say “feedback on the product” or “new ideas” “share technical info” (current forum is based on this) salesmen or managers would say different things: improvde sentiment towards the brand, being top customers, acknowledgements, prizes, ecc.

My question is, what’s more important? From the company perspective and from the customers perspective.
This is very interesting:

Looks a great strategy. What about starting with an “open” interview and at the end a brief survey?
How can I approach an interview like that?

[26 June] What are you working on this week?
(Richard Millington) #5

Sorry, missed this!

What do you mean by approach? How to reach out to members?

If that’s the case, I think it’s pretty easy to reach out to people but be clear you want their experience and expertise. They have to feel like they are making a unique, useful, contribution. It shouldn’t feel like you’re reaching out to 50+ people and they’re just the next name on the list. I’d focus on unique, useful, contributions :slight_smile:

(Alessio Fattorini) #6

By phone. I mean, how can I start my interview? Which kind of questions you would ask? Something like that.
I love the “make feel unique” way :slight_smile:

(Richard Millington) #7

Ah, gotcha! :slight_smile:

I don’t think you need to script it too much, it will begin to sound formal.

I usually have a few themes to ask questions around and zoom in on areas that are interesting.

So “thanks for this, it’s really going to help us…” …and then go into it.

The questions would depend upon what you’re trying to validate. But I usually try to get a sense of:

  1. Their personal background and story. Why they are doing the job they do from their perspective and company perspective.

  2. Any frustrations they have/what’s hard about their job and why? What specifically is stopping them from progressing? I really try to gently nudge people here to get very specific areas. I try to get broad answers first and then dive deeper.

  3. Where they hope to be in the future. What would be their ideal outcome? Again, pushing for specifics as much as possible here.

  4. What else is interesting about them or they feel they would like to mention.

It’s not entirely fitting with what you’re doing, but you get the broad idea. Let us know how it goes though. The results should be really interesting.