What Is the Customer Feedback Loop?

When the focus is on gathering customer feedback, many companies will launch a CX program without a plan for responding to customers. Everyone knows it’s best practice, but it can seem daunting to find a way to close the customer feedback loop. Let’s remedy that with an automated, code-free way to follow up.  Included in this article are screenshot examples of messaging that you can adapt to fit your customer feedback loop needs, courtesy of lead-gen startup and InMoment customer, Albacross.

But before we get ahead of ourselves, it is important to know why closing that customer feedback loop is so crucial.

The customer feedback loop is the process companies use to gather customer feedback and then respond to it by improving some aspect of the business or product. It is a loop because as the company makes improvements, the customers weigh in with feedback on how the improvements are faring. The company then adjusts the improvements to fit the voice of the customer. It is a constant loop of feedback and improvements. 

Customer feedback isn’t always negative, contrary to the connotation. Customer feedback, both positive and negative can give valuable insight as to how the company is performing and where it can improve.

Where some companies get stuck is closing the customer feedback loop. Closing the customer feedback loop is when a company makes adjustments to a product or service based off of the feedback to see to the customer’s needs. Gathering customer feedback is a good step, but it is not worth anything if no action is taken based off the information provided from the customer.

Why is Closing the  Customer Feedback Loop Important?

Why close the loop? There are substantial benefits that come from putting effort into closing the customer feedback loop:

  • Prevent problems – By implementing a closed-loop element into a customer feedback program like Net Promoter Score, you can identify problems before they escalate. Using automation and data analytics, you can recognize recurring themes in customer surveys that need to be addressed to avoid those same problems for future customers.
  • Discover upsell opportunities – Even satisfied customers can have great feedback on how you can improve your product or service. Maybe you don’t offer a product in a certain color, or something on the website is confusing. Either way, there is always room for improvement, and those improvements can become upsells for your customers. 
  • Create and foster long-term relationships – When a customer feels that you actually listen to their concerns and respond to them, they are more likely to be return customers and bring referrals. Every time you acknowledge your customers  for taking the time to provide feedback, you are strengthening  your relationship with them.
  • Retain current customers – studies show that returning customers spend 60% more money on purchasesd and provide more referrals than new customers. It is also 5 to 25 times  more expensive to find new customers than to retain existing ones. By closing the customer feedback loop, you help customers feel more loyal to your brand and come back for more.
  • Avoid customer churn – 89% of customers switch brands after a bad experience with a company if the company does not respond to their problems or complaints.

When you close the customer feedback loop, you set yourself up for success. It may be a daunting task, but automation can really help in keeping your customers happy and the customer feedback loop running smoothly.

Automating the Customer Feedback Loop-Closing Process

If you use Intercom to communicate with customers, you’re in luck. It’s extremely easy to implement a customer experience (CX) program that will close the customer feedback loop with InMoment’s entirely code-free Intercom Messenger Integration and start gathering feedback right in Intercom chat. InMoment’s NPS microsurvey can be integrated with Intercom Messenger with one click and survey responses automatically appear in Intercom user records. This makes it easy to set up automated follow-up messages to survey respondents based on their sentiment. Whether or not you use Intercom and InMoment, you can adapt a close-loop process to your own systems as you handle customer feedback.. 

Lead-gen software startup Albacross recently shared how they were able to swiftly automate a full-cycle NPS program. While the team started out by simply sending NPS surveys through Intercom, they quickly realized the value in closing the customer feedback loop with all of their respondents–detractors, passives and promoters. For Albacross, automating a close-the-loop process took just a few simple steps and the results have been incredible. Albacross has been able to understand its detractors on a whole new level, and they’ve been able to leverage promoters to drive more business. 

Read on for how you can easily do the same. 

Ask Detractors for Product Feedback

Sure, it might not feel great when you’ve received some low scores from valued customers on your customer surveys.. But, qualitative feedback from detractors can become a guiding light for your organization as it chooses what issues and insights it wants to prioritize in closing the customer feedback loop. You should also pay attention to detractors because a low score is often an indicator of customers who are at higher risk of churn. In other words, it’s crucial that you leverage your detractors – there is so much that you can learn from them. And, it’s quite simple – here’s how Albacross automated their messages for detractors: 

For users who rate their app low (0-6), Albacross sends two Intercom messages that ask for additional feedback. The main purpose of asking for additional customer feedback is to start the conversation and gain a deeper understanding of how the customer feels, what they’re struggling with, and why they’re disappointed.

Albacross sends messages via email: 

and via in-app messages that appear immediately after the user completes the survey:

When creating these automated messages, it’s important that you pay great attention to the simplicity and brevity of the message you’re sending out. In this case, Albacross only asks users for a single thing that they can improve to make it as easy as possible for customers to answer.

Ask Promoters to review you on Capterra or G2Crowd

What about all of your promoters? How can you make use of all this praise and admiration coming from your customers? 

Here’s the answer: close the customer feedback loop by getting your promoters to share their experience on online review sites. 

Online reviews are of utmost importance in a buyer’s evaluation process, especially in the B2B world, since these transactions often involve many people and large investments of money. According to a study done by G2 Crowd and Heinz Marketing, 71% of B2B buyers look at online reviews during the consideration stage. In addition, 92% of B2B buyers are more likely to purchase after reading a trusted review. By getting happy customers to share their positive experiences online, your organization can build credibility, improve trust, and increase brand awareness among potential buyers. If you’ve got happy customers, the momentum is already there – it’s now your job to transfer that positive momentum from your surveys to review sites. 

Let’s take a look at how Albacross closes the loop with their promoters. 

For users who give the app a passive rating (7-8), Albacross sends an email of gratitude to let them know that they appreciate the user’s feedback. This is sent via in-app message.

You’ll notice that Albacross’s message is short and sweet, and at the end, they ask their users to leave them a review on Capterra. 

For users who rate the app very high (9-10), the Albacross team sends an email with similar content, but this email is sent from their CEO. 

Closing the Customer Feedback Loop with Automation Leads to Results

Automating your close-the-loop process is guaranteed to uncover invaluable insights and drive high-impact action, whether that’s fixing a common issue for detractors or sending promoters to a review site to share their praise for your product. We cannot stress the value of closing the customer feedback loop enough. 

In the case of Albacross, their efforts in in closing the customer feedback loop and automating their program saw two key tangible effects:

Albacross’s NPS Score is consistently climbing. In just a short period of time, Albacross has more than 2x’ed their NPS score. Anyone with any experience with NPS knows that this is not an easy feat. 

Secondly, Albacross now has a rating of 4.5/5 and 100+ reviews on Capterra. Most of the reviews that they’ve gathered recently have come from promoters who were directed to Capterra from Albacross’s automated Intercom messages. 

So, go forth and close the customer feedback loop with survey respondents. It’s easy when you automate!

For more tips and tricks on closing the customer feedback loop, read our whitepaper designed to help you learn all you need to know to help you make a difference in your company using customer feedback.

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