How to Improve Your Company’s Net Promoter Score

3 Mins read

A Net Promoter Score is one of the classic measurements of success for gauging how you’re doing on the customer experience front. But if you want to improve your NPS numbers, you have to be diplomatic in your approach.

What is a Net Promoter Score?

In a world of complex metrics and sophisticated KPIs, the Net Promoter Score, or NPS, is rather straightforward. But don’t confuse its simplistic nature with a lack of value. When deployed correctly, it has the ability to completely alter your trajectory (in a good way).

NPS is basically a measure of the loyalty of customers to your brand. It asks a very simple question and then measures results based on a simple scoring and categorizing scale.

The question usually takes on some variation of this: “How likely are you to recommend [insert product or brand] to a friend?”

Survey respondents are then given the opportunity to rank their likelihood on a scale of 0 (not likely at all) to 10 (extremely likely).

Those who respond with a score in the 0 to 6 range are considered “detractors.” They’re unhappy, won’t advocate for your brand, and may even discourage others from purchasing from you.

Those who give you a 7 or 8 are satisfied, but not happy enough to go out of their way to recommend your brand. We call these “passives.”

Finally, any customer who scores you a 9 or 10 is considered a “promoter.” These are people who are loyal, enthusiastic, and likely to recommend you to others.

You can get your comprehensive NPS score by taking the percentage of promoters and subtracting the percentage of detractors. In other words, if 60 percent are promoters and 10 percent are detractors, your NPS is 50.

Net promoter score is a valuable measurement for many reasons, but most brands appreciate tangible benefits like:

  • Simple. It’s literally just one question. This simplicity typically translates into more submissions and more accurate feedback.
  • Easy. Because of the simple nature of NPS surveys, they can be deployed via any number of mediums. Phone, email, SMS, social media, and website landing pages are all viable options.
  • Trackable. The beauty of an NPS score is that you can track it over time. This gives you an idea of how you’re doing on a monthly, quarterly, and annual basis. And it doesn’t require a ton of squinting or analyzing to identify the trends. You can plot them on a simple chart and get immediate feedback on customer satisfaction.

With benefits such as these, NPS surveys are a no-brainer. The biggest challenge is dialing your surveys in so that they generate the most accurate data possible.

4 Ways to Improve Your NPS

Here are a few specific ways you can improve your NPS surveys and set your business up for success:

1. Get Everyone on the Same Page

Your team needs to breathe NPS. Whether someone works in customer service, sales, or accounting, they should wake up every morning thinking about your company’s NPS. In order to make this happen, you have to be clear and diplomatic about explaining the value of your NPS score and the importance of nurturing promoters. NPS survey software is one useful option for getting organized.

2. Speed Up Response Time

Many brands make the mistake of assuming customers only care about price and product. But truth be told, customers remember how you make them feel. And one of the best things you can do is speed up your customer service and/or response time. By making interactions smoother, faster, and more efficient, you can directly improve their satisfaction.

3. Gather and Apply Customer Feedback

Reasonable customers don’t expect you to be perfect. But they do expect you to listen to their feedback and apply it. Show customers you care about their input by putting insights into action. This builds their trust and gives them a reason to stick around.

4. Use the Three-Legged Stool Approach

There are three specific types of NPS surveys that work well:

  • Point-in-time surveys: Sent to customers at regular intervals (like at the end of each quarter).
  • Transactional surveys: Sent to customers immediately following an interaction with your brand.
  • Relative surveys: Sent to both customers of your brand and those of competitors to get a feel for how your brand ranks compared to others.

Using a combination of these three NPS surveys will give you the most useful data possible.

Putting Your Insights Into Action

Gathering data is only half of the battle. Armed with these insights, you can improve your business and engage customers on a new level. The sooner you take action, the faster things will change for the better.

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Larry is an independent business consultant specializing in tech, social media trends, business, and entrepreneurship. Follow him on Twitter and LinkedIn.