My track on Friday afternoon, “Refining Your Program Strategy”, had 3 engaging presentations which spoke to NPS programs that are beyond their first few years and entering into maturity. As the Account Management Director at Satmetrix, I commonly see the challenges programs have after losing their initial momentum of a new customer program and initial quick wins of identifying and resolving low hanging fruit, and asking, “What’s next?
Oliver Bendzsa from the Export Development Canada, and classic movie buff, started us off with his witty and insightful “The Seven Year Itch.” He set us up with a few iconic photos of Marilyn Monroe, and described the protagonist, as played by Tom Ewell, going on vacation with his family, and after happily married for seven years, starts questioning his marriage after seeing the girl played by Marilyn. The metaphor? EDC adopted NPS seven years ago, and recently faced an internal struggle of remaining true to NPS, or placing more of an emphasis on Sustainability/Profitability metrics.
Unlike the movie in which the protagonist stays true to his family, EAC decided to keep NPS, but also place emphasis on sustainability. Perhaps that is an easier position to take when scores are in 60s and 70s as they are for EDC. The story is how they had to segment their customers and develop business processes that were appropriate for the segments, allowing them to operate more efficiently.
Next up was Dan Roup from Alcoa. Dan had an entertaining presentation, “Keeping it Real – Net Promoter in the Trenches.” Alcoa is an extremely complex organization with 25 business units, from commodities to high end design. Dan shared some approaches to making his program effective, including stack ranking BU’s not by NPS, but by NPS change, as well as, showing where they rank relative to their competitors. Another example Dan shared was maintaining an internal NPS portal to keep a very large organization updated on NPS progress.
Finally, Rick DeLisi from Corporate Executive Board focused on activating Promoters with his, “Getting Promoters to Speak Out – Driving Advocacy with the Right Targeting Strategy.” I started out asking a crowd of about 60 how many followed up with Detractors, and nearly all raised their hands. When I asked how many felt like they were mobilizing their Promoters, one person raised their hand. This is a green field opportunity. Based on studies and research, Rick’s observations were: Not all Promoters actively promote, many Passives do actively promote, and companies need to figure out how to get as many customers to promote as they can. But, wait!, you can’t “get” customers to promote, but you can making it easier by creating opportunities.
Rick shared a really interesting study where a guy was parked on a busy street in NY and appeared to be struggling to load a sofa in a truck. He asked people on the street if they could help, and about 80% offered. He then offered to give people $5 to help load the sofa and less than half took the offer. The point is that a person’s decision making process is very different in a social environment (the first scenario) than in a business exchange (the second scenario). The point? Create a social context, and less business exchange, to help customers advocate for your brand. He then used examples of how companies are doing this with Ford, American Express, Intuit, and Westpac.