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Surveys and Interaction Analytics: The Perfect Voice of the Customer Pair

by Abby Monaco

One of the most important and fundamental pieces of a voice of the customer program is implementing a solution for your customers to provide unbiased feedback through surveys. But, if you are only using a one-dimensional approach you won’t get a complete view of how to improve your customer experience. What does a “complete” understanding of the customer experience really look like? Is it:

  1. a broad understanding of the experience across every touch point in the lifecycle?

  2. or a deep dive at any given point during an interaction?

Well trick question! To fully understand what your customer is experiencing, you need to do both. The most important component is to pool every source of data about customer interactions and combine that with the structured feedback your customer surveys deliver. Analyzing the combined data from both your survey results and your interaction analytics will reveal an unparalleled depth and breadth of insights into the voice of the customer.

How do you define the Voice of the Customer? Simply stated, a voice of the customer program takes a comprehensive approach to improving your business and delivering a lasting competitive advantage. Voice of the customer aims to understand your customers’ needs, perceptions, experiences and preferences to in turn create more meaningful experiences for them in the future.

In order to launch and sustain a successful voice of the customer program, you need the ability to gather data from a variety of sources.

Direct Feedback Customer feedback surveys help you receive timely, actionable feedback directly from the customer immediately following the interaction. These unbiased customer insights can be collected via a variety of channels, including voice, text, email, or web, and enable you to proactively identify patterns in behavior. The direct feedback gathered through a survey tool is incredibly valuable in your voice of the customer program and in coaching your agents. While direct feedback is important, you also need to layer indirect feedback in order to see a full view of what your customers are experiencing. That is where the importance of interaction analytics comes in.

Indirect Feedback Interaction analytics allows you to mine data to find indirect feedback for all omnichannel customer interactions. With interaction analytics you uncover data goldmines often overlooked when using a survey-only approach to understanding your customers. Use this indirect data in parallel with the direct survey feedback to completely capture your customers’ voices and improve their experiences. While surveys let customers tell you openly how they feel about an experience, analytics tells you their untold story. It delivers actionable insights with the help of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Natural Language processing to get to the root cause of trends and issues customers are experiencing and crosses all the touch points throughout the customer lifecycle.

These insights can help:

  • guide measurable improvements to increase customer satisfaction

  • detect risk and compliance issues

  • spot training opportunities to improve operational efficiency and performance

  • identify sentiment and detect emotion.

Connecting direct and indirect data for next level customer experience insights In interaction analytics, experience extremes are often under-represented, while in direct feedback (surveys) the extremes are often over-represented. So it makes sense that these two data sources complement each other. One customer’s negative sentiment in a survey (a negative extreme) can be in turn quantified across all customer interactions in the contact center This makes it easier to qualify that the issue is valid – rather than one isolated incident -- and quantify the cost of operationalizing with the information at hand.

In this way, survey responses help anchor sentiment analysis to reliable extremes, while the speech and text analytics work to normalize the information among the multitudes of interactions. With this knowledge, you can be much smarter about how you fix pain points for voice of customer program improvements.

Stronger Together To conclude, here are a few takeaways when considering the additional of interaction analytics to gain indirect feedback in your contact center:

  1. Discover trending topics and issues - Interaction analytics can easily help identify new and evolving customer problems, trending terms and issues. As issues start to emerge you can quickly put a plan into place to address the needs of your customers and make sure agents are armed with the right information.

  2. Increase CSAT - Interaction analytics identifies product and service gaps, reveals top complaints and establishes marketing and competitor strategies through customer feedback. Having access to all this data in an easy to digest format helps create a comprehensive view to improve customer satisfaction ratings and loyalty.

  3. Improve customer retention - A successful Voice of the Customer program reduces customer attrition (aka improves retention). Interaction analytics identifies frustrated customers. Frustration indicates that a customer could potentially churn away from your company - toward a competitor! By gaining an understanding of the processes, products and issues that are driving customer churn, you can build a strategy for customer rescue efforts.

  4. Understand every touch point- Interaction analytics helps you pinpoint issues every step of the customer journey by analyzing all recorded interactions with the organization from purchase to on-boarding and support. This helps improve business performance by understanding the full customer experience and where to improve.

If you would like to learn more about interaction analytics and how it plays an integral part in providing a comprehensive approach to improve your voice of the customer program, watch this video.

Abby Monaco Abby is a Senior Product Marketing Manager for NICE who brings over 20 years of experience in product management and marketing direction in software and technology. She is responsible for articulating and promoting the NICE vision, message, and competitive advantages of the CXone portfolio.

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