Mystery Shoppers Replaced by Real-Time Customer Feedback

Empathica Launches New Zealand and Australia Offerings

October 17, 2012 – Old school once-a-month mystery shopper programmes are well past their use-by date as a tool to understand and improve customer satisfaction, according to Empathica ANZ managing director, Andrew Baird.

“It’s a model that served its purpose for many years,” says Baird and as an operational audit tool, still has a role. “But as a customer satisfaction tool it is fraught with inaccuracies, it is expensive, statistically unreliable and slow. Today, we can tap into real-time consumer feedback, use that to help our retail clients shape their service into what really matters and help turn their customers into true advocates for their brand.”

Based in Toronto, Canada, Empathica is one of the world’s leading providers of Customer Experience Management (CEM) programmes to companies like Boots, Waitrose, Canadian Tire, Debenhams, and Pizza Hut internationally, and has started working with Hyundai and Z Energy locally in New Zealand.

“Our goal is to help retailers determine what it takes to turn their customers into raving fans,” says Baird. “Today, customers can have a huge influence on where their friends and family shop, based on a bad experience – or an incredible one. We provide a range of tools to measure and provide in-depth analysis of customer experience, every day, multiple times a day. We even help customers recommend the stores we work with.”

Z Energy has already seen a huge lift in positive customer experience scores. Staff at all Z stores receive daily feedback, sometimes with individual comments, on how their service and site is perceived.

“All feedback is well received, critical or positive. Z staff actively want to know how they can improve their service, and feel a huge degree of satisfaction when they know they have made an impression positive enough for customers to comment on,” says Baird.

With a background in retail marketing and convenience management that has led to positions with BP Oil in Chicago, Melbourne and Los Angeles, Baird is pleased to be leading an offer he has used as the client, to retailers in New Zealand, Australia and South East Asia.

“86 per cent of consumers stop doing business with a company because of a bad customer experience – up from just 59 per cent four years ago,” says Baird. “Now, more than ever, it’s critical to stop the rot, quickly. Empathica puts the information and the power back in the retailer’s hands to make life-saving changes to their business.”

Empathica is a registered trademark of EMPATHICA INC. used under license by STRAIGHT SHOOTER LTD.

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