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Feedback: The bearer of great news?

Customer feedback doesn't always have to be negative - why you shouldn't be afraid of gathering customer feedback, and how to use it for continuous improvement

Customer Radar

May 01, 2024


Opening the door to feedback can be a daunting process. No one enjoys those conversations with customers where you leave feeling embarrassed, demoralised, and frustrated. Feeling like that’s all feedback is? This couldn’t be further from the truth…


Why most people are so scared of getting feedback

People avoid feedback because they hate being criticised. This traces back to deep psychological reasons, such as our self-preservationist instinct to avoid experiencing harm or social humiliation.  As a result, we give negative feedback a lot more attention than positive feedback. It’s easy to dwell on the negatives, and quickly forget the positives. Because we remember the negative feedback, we tend to assume any feedback will be worst-case scenario – and simply avoid the process altogether. But to be truly customer-centric, you need to face your fear of negative feedback and ensure you’re regularly asking for feedback. Luckily, the news isn’t all bad.

The positive reality of customer feedback

Let’s face it – your business must be doing something right. Today’s marketplace is too competitive and value-driven for businesses who provide no value to survive. So perhaps it’s no surprise that most of our clients get an average of 70% five star ratings when they ask their customers for feedback.

Being able to understand what your customers love about your business is one of the biggest benefits of gathering feedback. It shows that your business strategy is working, and that your on-the-ground team are living up to your brand promises. Many of our clients who were initially terrified to ask for feedback have now found a renewed sense of confidence in their business’s performance.

What this means for your employees

Getting customer praise is a real boost. Gathering positive feedback will help increase employees’ morale, while negative or constructive feedback will give them ways they can improve the level of service they provide. Some of our clients have even gamified this, rewarding employees who get improved feedback, or turning it into a competition between different branches of a store.

Employees become more engaged, and feel more accountable when they know their service is getting feedback. Ultimately, proactively taking a customer-centric stance and seeking out feedback means that your business gets the full picture – you get validated, reliable data and benefit from the value of both positive and negative feedback, rather than only seeing the negative outliers which come to your attention from outspoken customers.

Using feedback improve your customer experience

Though positive feedback occurs much more than we expect, there will inevitably still be a degree of negative feedback.  Thankfully, your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning. Gathering instant, actionable feedback is an opportunity to make customer centric, continuous improvement a central pillar of your business.

After receiving negative feedback, engage with your customer. Let them know they are heard. You want customers to share their negative feedback with you, before they go telling their friends and family – giving you control of the process, and allowing you to make amends before they begin spreading their feedback. A recent study has shown that 83% of complainants who leave a comment on social media liked the fact that the company replied. Making changes based on a customer’s feedback and showing you are truly customer driven is a prime opportunity to turn unhappy customers into advocates.

Feedback shouldn’t flounder at the bottom of your business's priority list. It’s an enabler of continuous improvement, and a proven gateway to more engaged customers, happier employees, and ultimately a better performing business. The best part? Finding out what your customers love about you.

To get started on your feedback journey, just get in touch.

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