Monday, Jun 24, 2024

Customer Retention: The Power of Customer Surveys

Do you constantly look for ways to generate more business? Well, have you ever polled your client-base to determine what new services or features your company can offer? This week's column will be focusing on the importance and value of customer surveys. Surveys help businesses by revealing the satisfaction levels and preferences of their customers. A constant flow of customer feedback can help direct companies in making improvements that positively impact sales and profits. There are numerous methods for conducting surveys; some are extremely costly and others are surprisingly economical.

Focus groups and face-to-face interviews fall into the first category as they require significant manpower and time to sort through the overwhelming amount of data generated.


A phone survey offers some of the advantage of face-to-face interviews and focus groups without the additional cost involved of sending an employee or agent to meet to survey participants (although nothing ever replaces face-to-face interaction).


Surveys sent to participants via direct mail have proven to be quite successful, as it allows the people being surveyed to think about their answers before writing them down, often resulting in more accurate and insightful feedback.


However, mailed surveys always face the risk of being discarded or not answered by the recipient. Therefore, it is imperative to grab the participant’s attention with a complimentary coupon, free gift offer, or even the promise of something that will benefit their community. Just like the biggest survey of them all — the U.S. 2010 Census Bureau — successfully did with their recent advertising campaign.


According to PRNewswire, The U.S. Census Bureau is being recognized by Mediaweek, a leading advertising industry trade publication, for its 2010 Census advertising campaign. The primary purpose of the Census’ advertising efforts were to educate and motivate households to mail back their 2010 Census forms when they arrived in March – and more than 72 percent of America participated.


The Census sparked the interest of participants by showing that when they take 10 minutes to fill out the questionnaire, they help get their communities what they need for the next 10 years. For instance, one convincing headline they used on their mailings (and alternative advertising methods as well) asked, “If we don’t know how many kids there are, how do we know how many classrooms we need?”


With a hard-hitting sales pitch like that, it’s no wonder that American’s made it a priority to mail those forms back quickly and on-time.


Another popular survey method that has become almost ubiquitous when completing a shopping transaction online is email and pop-up surveys. According to numerous studies, the response times and percentages of these surveys are quite high, and customers appreciate the ease and convenience.


Of course, surveys do more than just provide important feedback; they also create a bond between your company and the customer, helping involve them in your brand and your success.


For example, the Evenflo Savvy Parents Survey is the first in a series of polls that infant and juvenile product manufacturer, Evenflo, will conduct to gauge the feelings of people and their everyday parenting dilemmas. The surveys are part of the “The Savvy Parents Guide”, a new online destination aimed at providing education, resources and a sense of community for parents in the know.


While parents will benefit by sharing common parenting concerns and possibly finding helpful solutions, Evenflo will benefit the most by having their finger on the pulse of the parenting community, and in-turn, will eventually create new products that will address the problems and concerns being faced by the modern-day parent.


But most of all, when that new product — the brainchild of the parent’s participating in Evenflo’s survey — is launched, guess who will be first on line to buy it…?


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Yitzchok Saftlas is the CEO of Bottom Line Marketing Group, a premier marketing agency recognized for its goal-oriented branding, sales, recruitment and fundraising techniques. Serving corporate, non-profit and political clientele, Bottom Line’s notable clients include: Mike Bloomberg for Mayor, Dirshu and TeachNYS.


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