The automated digital world we’re living in has done a lot to make us more productive, but studies show that it’s also turning us into terrible listeners. It’s an unfortunate side effect, especially right now when your customers not only want to be heard, but they also need to know you’re listening and that you understand. And it’s a two-way street. Understanding your customers’ needs helps you improve products and services which, in turn, keeps customers happy and loyal to your financial institution. Often, a customer survey does a great job of gathering useful information, but there are times when you need something more in-depth to fully understand customers’ views, experiences, and concerns. In those cases, a live, in-person conversation is the perfect solution for really getting to the heart of the customer experience.
More Than a Survey
Surveys are designed to optimize data-gathering by presenting customers with close-ended questions. It’s quick and easy to answer “yes” or “no” or to rate an experience on a numerical scale, and it’s just as convenient to gather the feedback and compile it for analysis. Survey data is definitely useful, but there are times when close-ended survey answers may be limiting.
For instance, sometimes it’s impossible to give an accurate answer when choices are limited. What if a survey asks a question and the customer isn’t sure of the answer, but the only choices are “yes” or “no”? If a customer is asked whether their financial institution makes them a priority, for example, but they don’t have an option of responding that they don’t know where they are on their bank’s priority list, they might answer “no”. That could raise a red flag; but answering “yes” for lack of an accurate answer could be a bigger problem because that wouldn’t alert you to a potential issue. In cases like this, offering more answer choices would be helpful, but it would also be useful to dig deeper and find out what’s behind the answers your customer gives.
Talk It Out
A conversation with a live interviewer takes VoC to the next level, giving customers the sense that their bank or credit union cares enough to follow up. It provides a chance for the customer to clarify and expand on their answers and to talk about their opinions and issues they’re specifically concerned about. If they gave your mobile banking app a neutral or lower rating on a survey, for instance, the interviewer could ask why the customer rated it that way. But even better, the interviewer could ask the customer for their suggestions on what they’d like to see in an app, as well as ask what features would make their mobile banking experience better.
Negative responses, low scores, and outright complaints are the obvious cases for live interviews but following up with a happy customer is just as valuable. It gives them the chance to talk about their survey answers and pinpoint what they appreciate about their bank or credit union. And it lets you know what you’re doing right so you can keep going down that road.
Make the Most of the Data
If you’d like to take a deeper dive into your customers’ experience, Avannis has the perfect solution. Our Just a Conversation tool is a proprietary telephone interview like none other. Built using focus group techniques, it’s more like an intimate discussion between a high-value customer and a caring representative of their financial institution. Our professional agents guide the conversation with open-ended questions and encourage customers to share details of an issue, an experience, or a situation. It’s an opportunity for the customer to open up and talk in a safe setting. Ultimately, it’s a unique way to engage customers and let them know you’re actively listening, and that their financial institution understands and empathizes.
In the end, whether the experiences discussed in the interviews are good or bad, giving customers a chance to talk it out gives them a satisfying sense of closure—and satisfied customers tend to be loyal ones. Contact us today to find out how Just a Conversation can increase customer loyalty and retention for your bank or credit union.