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NPS & CSAT

NPS+: 5 Steps to Get More Out of NPS Surveys

Chris Minnich  //  June 14, 2022  //  6 min read

An article in the Harvard Business Review introduced Net Promoter Score (NPS) surveys to the business world nearly twenty year ago. NPS surveys changed the way businesses gauge customer experience and are still widely used today. However, all good things come to an end, or in this case, just need improvements to still be effective today.

Mobile App NPS SurveyNPS versus NPS+

Over the past two decades, advancement in digital technology and our understanding of customer behavior have changed many aspects of the corporate approach to customer loyalty and emotion. However, the need is greater than ever for a tool that gives companies the information they need to understand and act on both. To answer this need, we came up with a better way to gauge customer loyalty and emotion: NPS+. 

NPS+ is a simple solution that helps our customers get more actionable and meaningful feedback from their NPS surveys.

Survey with NPS dialog and follow up question asking why they left that score

NPS+ takes traditional NPS surveys a step further by diving into the “why” behind each NPS response. If you understand the “why” behind the score provided, you can contextualize the response and take action to address the root causes behind that response. 

NPS+ also addresses three major flaws of traditional NPS surveys.

Scores mean something different to every customer

Every customer interprets the options on a 0-10 scale differently. When a customer provides a zero, does that mean they hate the product? Or does a zero simply mean they like the product, but not enough to refer it to someone.  Likewise, how do you quantify the difference between a six and a seven. Without context on why customers choose a particular number, it is hard to make informed decisions based on NPS responses.

Most responses are not in real time

Only 12 percent of marketers send NPS surveys to customers at specific points in their customer lifecycle. Instead, the vast majority of companies send batches of NPS surveys, often over email, on a quarterly or monthly basis to all of their customers. This practice results in delayed responses that come weeks or months after the customer’s last experience with your brand. 

If marketers send NPS surveys immediately after an event takes place, they can gauge customer emotion when the experience is fresh. Even better, if they utilize in-app surveys, they can receive feedback in real time, and more of it.

NPS surveys offer limited emotional data

People measure and think about experiences in emotions, not numbers. When you ask someone if they liked something, their first instinct isn’t to give you a ranking on a scale, but rather describe their feelings and emotions in words. The absence of emotion is the biggest gap in traditional NPS strategies.

Five Steps to get more out of your NPS surveys

Taking the flaws of NPS into account, read on for five steps to help you craft an NPS+ strategy that will get more out of NPS surveys.

#1: Target the right customers

Tools like Apptentive allow you to serve surveys to specific, targeted groups of customers based upon actions they’ve taken within the app or personal information, such as account type, location, or amount of time spent within the app. This helps you ensure you’re asking relevant questions to customers who have the right experience with your product or application to provide meaningful feedback.

#2: Survey at the right time

It is important to ask customers for feedback at a time that doesn’t interfere with their experience. Instead of sending an NPS survey right before the customer makes a purchase or right after they open the app, prompt customers with an in-app survey after they complete a purchase and ask how they feel about their completed experience. Now, more than ever, customers expect to be heard. So, asking customers for feedback right after they complete a lifecycle step is the best and most natural time to ask.

#3: Learn the “why” behind every NPS score

This is the driving force behind any NPS+ strategy. By simply asking customers, “Why did you choose this score?” below the NPS rating dialog, you can contextualize their numerical response and determine what is impacting their experience, good or bad. If you give customers the opportunity to provide unstructured feedback, you can learn why certain customers are detractors and take actionable steps to turn them into promoters. 

With the right customer feedback tool, you can even track sentiment based on keywords included in the customer’s written feedback. This allows you to track changes in emotion and identify how those changes correlate with the customer’s NPS rating.

Sentiment Analysis

#4: Act on the “why”

It is challenging for businesses to make decisions based solely on an NPS score. NPS+ surveys, when paired with in-app feedback tools, simplify the process of acting on feedback. When you understand the “why” behind an NPS score you can take the following actions: 

  • Reach detractors (0-6) before they churn by targeting them with discounts. You can also let these customers know when you address the pain points they mentioned in their NPS+ survey. 
  • Shift your neutral customers (7-8) to fans by sending exclusive offerings to them, while regularly asking for more feedback on what could be done better.
  • Utilize your biggest fans (9-10) to improve your app store rating or provide them with incentivised referral links to share. These customers already said they are likely to refer friends or family, so why not take them up on it!

#5: Close the loop

To get the most out of an NPS+ survey it is important to close the feedback loop and let customers know that you are not just asking for their feedback, but acting on it as well. One of the best things about NPS+, combined with in-app feedback tools, is that they simplify the process of responding to customer feedback. For example, after adding a feature, or an update, you can send Notes to the customers that left those specific requests or complaints in their feedback. 

Responding to customer feedback is a proven way to let customers know that you care about their experience and are taking steps to listen and improve.

Final thoughts

NPS isn’t going away anytime soon, but neither are its flaws. By changing the focus from NPS to NPS+, companies can gather more meaningful and personal feedback from their customers. This new approach gives a voice to every customer and provides brands with the information they need  to make product and experience decisions that have the biggest impact on their customers. 

The next time you calculate your NPS score, ask yourself, “What does that number really mean?” and “What does this tell me about how people feel?”

Ready to get more out of your NPS surveys? Request a demo to see how Apptentive can help.

About Chris Minnich

Chris Minnich is a Content Specialist at Apptentive. He enjoys telling stories with written and visual content.
View all posts by Chris Minnich >

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