Setting Targets for Measures of Customer Satisfaction: Comparing Results Based on Benchmarking vs. Linkage Analysis

Every company wants to know how they add up against the competition. But how do you measure customer satisfaction and loyalty? Dr. D. Randall Brandt spoke about three ways to set target loyalty goals: judgment-based metrics, benchmark-based, and linkage analysis. Judgment-based choosing is when management simply picks a target based on personal judgment. This works best in tandem with benchmarking or linkage. It can be difficult for management to articulate the rationale, and it may not be realistic. When companies use benchmark-based targets, they define their targets in comparison to some benchmark, be it time, inter- or intra-organizational. These targets are easier to explain and take into account the company’s current state. However, this may promote a false sense of confidence since you don’t know if achieving the target will yield desired business results. Linkage Analysis is based on strength and creates a relationship between satisfaction and business outcome of interest. It is easier for management to explain, which increases the odds of achieving the desired business result The objectives of this analysis is to determine and evaluate the similarities and differences among targets based upon benchmarks vs. linkage analysis, then use the results to develop a framework. Frameworks should: – 1. Drive continuous improvement – 2. Achieve customer experience leadership – 3. Realize desired business results Use these criteria for setting targets for key customer metrics on the basis of business strategies and objectives. Evaluate scores on these metrics using the selected multiple criteria and targets to find out just where your company sits against others in the industry.

Steps to Driving Action on the Front Line in a B2B Environment

Tim Berry from Microsoft spoke of driving your sales force to enhance the customer experience. Every company should try to become a trusted partner with its customers. Microsoft has gone on a journey toward deeper customer satisfaction. When Microsoft was being perceived less positively, Bill Gates made a decision to start listening to customers. Since then, the company has received more and more positive feedback as it shifted to the Web, and now through the transition to the Cloud. Understand what your moment of truth is: It’s when a customer is most focused on you and when they make their assessment of how satisfied they are with you. The goal is to drive change. Use customer feedback to find out how to make the experience better. This can be measure by the Relationship Management Score (RMS). Have a consistent and predictable customer engagement model. This information can be used to create tools and resources to optimize the sales force. Listen to customers to find how they define success. Create actionable Customer Satisfaction Metrics to hold people accountable ‘ all the way down to the individual level. ‘What gets measured gets done.’ Make sure the data is being used. Here are Tim’s tips to drive relationship health: 1. Consistent Sales Methodology 2. Listening Methods 3. Drive Execution Excellence 4. Close the Loop You must know the value proposition for all your constituents, whether they be external or internal. The sales force needs to be funneled toward execution excellence. Start with a Strategic Relationship Map. Define which roles and relationships are needed and who can fill them. Be sure to communicate the results to customers and to employees. Create an action plan to improve upon what you learned. Focus on having CPE information stay close to the sales team. Formalize Corrective Action Plans ‘ if an issue comes up, be transparent and open. Create a conversation Start this movement from the top down. If the CEO isn’t behind it, others won’t come together either. Create a central group that supports the vision ‘ they will drive the overall strategy. Remember that CSAT is a long-term strategy and every internal and external factor has an impact. Tailor the process to each segment. Create actionable CSAT metrics to drive change. Then measure, and do it all again.