All you need to know about running a successful VoC program

Voice of the customer questions


Table of Contents

What is the voice of customer questions?

The Voice of customers is the heart of market research. Businesses these days rely the most on this technique of gathering, capturing, analysing and implementing customer feedback. A successful voice of customer research in itself is not a goal, but its success is measured on how well it has served its purpose of delivering valuable insights and ideas. 

Therefore the above goal can be achieved if you have the well-framed voice of customer questions. The outcomes of your survey will be as good as your survey questions were.

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Tips for the well-structured voice of customer questions

  • Don’t ask too many questions. Of course, you would want to ask your customers hundreds of questions, but they don’t have that much time. An average time window in which customers can stick your survey is 5-10 minutes. 
  • Keep the questions short. Unnecessarily long questions can complicate the understanding of the respondents, resulting in higher survey abandonment rates.
  • Focused on the topic. Make sure your questions are focusing on the topic you started your survey for in the first place. Don’t let the survey go out of the topic scope, resulting in getting irrelevant data. 
  • Avoid nested questions. Even though you want to ask a lot of questions, combining them together is not a good idea. Keep your questions focused on one moto at a time. 
  • Balance quantitative and qualitative questions. Make use of both the methods of questions. Quantitative questions will require the customer to explain their answers in a brief while quantitative questions will have pre-defined options to choose from.
  • Keep the questions easy. Make use of simple words that the respondents can understand. Know that not all customers have the same vocabulary and knowledge about your brand. 
  • Start with the overall experience. The very first question of your survey should be to ask what the customers think about your brand’s overall performance. Keeping this question till the last will just narrow down the customers’ opinions and they might end up giving influenced answers. 

Why do you need to focus on the voice of customer questions?

You realize that you want to get customer feedback on your customer service. If their issues are being resolved, are they comfortable with talking to your customer care agents, and all sorts of product or service related interactions?

You make a survey in no time and distribute it to your customers. Now your survey is having a great response and you cannot wait to dig into the data and start analysing. But when you actually get to that point, you realize 75% of the data is just random and irrelevant to the “customer service” topic. 

Now you are frustrated and have no clue how you are going to analyze this random data and how much can you rely on the conclusions that you will get out of it. 

Now imagine if you had spent some more time and effort in actually framing the right questions, this disaster wouldn’t have happened. 

This example is the reason enough for why it is important to focus on the voice of customer questions, and why you need to structure the survey properly. 

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Types of the voice of customer questions you need to include

In this final section we will see some of the commonly used types of questions you can use in your survey:

  • Awareness and image – these questions brings out where your brand stands in the market and what the customers perceive it as. Example: “What comes first in your mind when you hear our brand name?”
  • Communication – these questions ask the customers which platform of interaction they think is more comfortable with your company. Example: “Which of the social media platforms do you use more?”
  • Competition – this type of voice of customer question will let the customers tell you their perspective of who your competition is. Example: “Have you purchased the same product from some other company in the past?”
  • Concepts – ask a question to know whether they are liking your product, service or concept. Example: “How appealing would each of the following products would be to you?”
  • Customer-specific – ask this question to get information on the customer that is unique to them. Example: “How long have you been with us in this journey?”
  • Decisions – this question will have your customers themselves tell you what their purchase strategy is. Example: “What do you look for first while purchasing a product?”
  • Demographics – this is a personal question intended to gain somewhat personal information about the customers so that you can adjust your marketing strategy accordingly. Example: “In which of the following ranges does your annual income fit in?”
  • Negative feedbacks – be open to negative feedbacks as they are the prime source of your improvements. Don’t hesitate to ask questions to which you know there are going to be bad responses. Example: “How likely are you to buy the same product from some other brand?”
  • Lead generation – ask a question to know if the customer is getting enough attention from the company. Example: “Do you need a follow-up from the company for any reason?”
  • Performance – ask the customers directly about your performance and services. Example: “What do you like/hate the most about us?”
  • Testimonial – knowing not all customers will be comfortable with giving their responses to be used as testimonials. But it wouldn’t hurt to ask, just don’t make it mandatory. Example: “Would you be interested in giving us a testimonial of your experience with us?”
  • Value – ask the customers if their wants and needs were met by your brand. Example: “Did you find anything useful today?”
  • Loyalty – use NPS® (Net Promoter Score®) to understand how much the customers are willing to spread your brand across their network. Example: “On the scale of 1-10, how likely are you to recommend us to your friends and family?”

Net Promoter®, NPS®, NPS Prism®, and the NPS-related emoticons are registered trademarks of Bain & Company, Inc., Satmetrix Systems, Inc., and Fred Reichheld. Net Promoter Score℠ and Net Promoter System℠ are service marks of Bain & Company, Inc., Satmetrix Systems, Inc., and Fred Reichheld.

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