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Anyone involved in creating, selling, or delivering a product or service can benefit from voice of customer research. It's a great way to keep your ears on the ground, find out what your customers are saying about your business, and why they make certain choices. 

An in-depth voice of customer research would reveal why your customers need you, what you can do to help them, and how you can improve the overall service delivery of your business.

In this article, we'll show you nine(9) practical ways to collect voice of customer data from your clients. 

What is the Voice of Customer? 

Voice of Customer is a research method that allows you to gather meaningful feedback about customers’ experiences and expectations for your product or service. The goal of voice of customer research is to understand what people want so that they will buy more products and services from you. When your customers feel seen and heard, they will become willing advocates for your business. 

VOC helps companies improve their products by understanding how customers perceive them and then using this information to make any required improvements to the buyer's journey. It can be used in any industry to build a closer bond with your customers and improve customer loyalty.

Free to use: 40 Market Research Survey Templates

Applications and Benefits of Voice of Customer Research  

To build a brand that your customers cherish, you must go the extra mile to align your messaging with their core values. Conducting voice of customers in market research is a reliable way to achieve this using helpful customer insights. 

By embracing the voice of customer research, businesses will: 

  1. Gain a better understanding of who their customers are, what they like, and why they use your product
  2. Identify any customer experience gaps that can trigger high customer churn
  3. Discover any opportunities for improving customer satisfaction
  4. Gather meaningful insights for market research and product development
  5. Gain clarity to help you tweak your brand messaging and redefine your overall positioning 

Ultimately, the voice of customer research gives you a clear idea of what your customers think about your brand and its products. By gathering data through surveys and focus groups, you’ll gain valuable insights into why your customers choose to use certain brands over others. These insights will help you create better marketing strategies and design better products.

You also learn which features and benefits your customers value most when making purchasing decisions. And you can leverage this knowledge to develop future offerings based on what your customers care about.

Free to use: Customer Needs Assessment Template

How to Create an Effective Voice of Customer Program 

Who needs to participate in voice of customer research?  The reality is anyone involved in creating, selling, or delivering a product or service will benefit from the voice of customer research.

If you're looking to increase sales, you may find that having only one person represent your organization during the survey process isn't enough. If you sell multiple lines of products or offer different types of services, you should consider involving representatives from each department, depending on the size of your organization.

An effective voice of the customer program goes beyond your marketing team—everyone in your organization has to get involved, including the C-level executives. Technically, your C-level team should lead the organization's voice of customer program and coordinate engagements across the different tiers of the company. 

So how do you create an effective voice of customer program? Here are a few things you should consider: 

  • Customer Listening

The first thing you need to do is map out the ideal customer journey—from the first time a prospect comes in contact with your product or service up to the point where they make a purchasing decision. When you identify these different touchpoints, you can go ahead to measure customer experience and satisfaction.

  • Customer Feedback

Next, you need to figure out a non-intrusive method of gathering feedback from customers. A good way to do this is to send out a simple Formplus survey or poll that respondents can fill out conveniently. You can send out surveys via form links, email invitations, or QR codes. 

  • Data Analysis

When you have all the data sets you need, it's time to extract valuable customer insights. Formplus has a data analytics dashboard to scan millions of open feedback entries in real-time and reveal recurring themes in areas for improvement.

  • Taking Action

More than gathering and analyzing data, you must translate these pieces of information into valuable policies that improve customer satisfaction and experience in your organization. For example, these insights can help you improve communication at different brand touchpoints. 

Learn: How to Calculate Lifetime Value of a Customer (Free LTV calculator + examples)

How to Conduct Voice of Customer Research with Formplus 

With Formplus, you can create customer surveys, polls, and questionnaires for voice of customer research. Here's how to go about it.

Step 1: Sign in to your Formplus account to access your dashboard. 

Step 2: Click the "create new form" button at the top of the dashboard. 


Step 3: Now, you should have access to the Formplus builder. Go to the inputs section and choose your preferred form fields. You can drag and drop fields into the form “work area.” You can select rating fields, text fields for open-ended questions, and numerical fields, among others. 


Step 4: After adding the fields, click on the pencil-like icon to edit them. You can add questions and options in the editing tab and make the field hidden or read-only. 

Step 5: Click the "save icon" to save all the changes you've made. This action gives you automatic access to the form customization section. 

Step 6: Use the form customization options to change the look and feel of your survey. You can add preferred background images, change the form font or add your company's logo. 


Step 7: Copy the form link and share it with respondents. Alternatively, you can send out email invitations to your customers and collect responses. 

Nine (9) Other Techniques for Collecting Voice of Customer Data

1. Customer Interviews 

Conducting a customer interview is one of the oldest methods of gathering voice of customer data. You can organize a structured interview, semi-structured interview, or unstructured interview depending on the size of your customer base, organizational structure, and business model. 

For example, a small business with 50 customers or less can conduct a semi-structured or unstructured interview with open-ended questions. However, an enterprise organization with hundreds of thousands of customers would be better off with a structured interview with close-ended questions

You can choose a subset of customers and invite them for an in-person interview, send an email or organize a telephone interview. 

2. Online Customer Surveys 

These days, a more common way to collect voice of customer data is to conduct an online survey or send out a questionnaire. Many organizations prefer this data collection method because it saves time and resources and allows them to gather responses seamlessly. 

Customer surveys also help you to identify the issues your clients face and plan to address them. Here are a few Formplus survey templates that you can try out for free: 

  • Formplus Customer Satisfaction Survey 

With our customer satisfaction survey template, you can quickly discover your clients’ thoughts about your product or service. You can embed this template on your website or share it via form link or QR code. 

  • Market Survey Form 

Are you planning to launch a new product or service? Use the Formplus market survey form to gain better insights into the needs of your target audience. You can collect a range of information, including demographic data, product preferences, and audience perception, to help you create the right product.

  • Voice of Customer Survey 

Use this voice of customer survey to learn more about your clients' perception of your brand. This form allows you to gather valuable data to help you understand your customer's needs. You can customize the voice of the customer survey template to suit your brand's style and needs. 

3. Live Chat 

Recent research shows that 67% of B2C brands use live chat for customer support. Many customers prefer live chat to other interaction methods because it allows for real-time communication—they can quickly escalate issues and receive in-the-moment support. 

More than using live chat to resolve customer complaints, it also comes in handy for collecting voice of customer data. The live chat box can pop up a few minutes after a visitor lands on your site, with an invitation to answer a few questions. 

The best part of using live chat for voice of customer data collection is it makes the entire process interactive and engaging—just like chatting with a real person. 

4. Social Media 

Through social media interactions with your customers, you can get a fair idea of what they think about your product and your brand in general. 

These days, many organizations are trying to become more human on social media. This means you can actively engage with your customers for feedback or use social listening tools to monitor relevant conversations about your brand. 

If you like, you can directly publish polls and surveys on social media to gather hard data from your customers in real-time. Social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter also allow you to form deeper connections with your customers, which affects their perception of your business. 

5. Website Behavior

How long do people spend on your website? What pages do they visit the most? If you need answers to these questions and more, you should take time to track customer behavior on your website. 

Tools like Crazy Egg and Google Analytics give you access to data about visits to your site. Crazy Egg, for instance, is an all-in-one tool for tracking visitors' recordings, scrolls, heatmaps, and similar data on your website. 

6. Customer Calls 

Any interaction with your customer provides an opportunity to collect relevant feedback. From sales calls to demos and customer support calls, telephone conversations with your clients can help you discover any gaps in your business that require improvement, plus the things you're doing right. 

Customers who get on the phone with you are usually one of three things: 

  • Very interested in your product.
  • Very happy with your company.
  • Very unhappy with your company

In the course of your team's conversations with customers in any of these groups, you can gather detailed feedback, identify trends across customer complaints, and make any needed adjustments. 

7. Monitor Reviews 

Online reviews are an important part of customer feedback. They can be anything from a simple 5-star rating to more detailed and open-ended feedback on a customer's experience with your business. Online reviews can attract more customers to your business or discourage prospects and leads from interacting with your brand. 

There are several platforms for monitoring online reviews. Some of them include Trustpilot, G2, Yelp, Google My Business. Social media platforms are also a rich source of honest and unfiltered feedback from clients. 

8. Net Promoter Score 

Net Promoter Score is a customer experience metric that organizations use to measure consumer satisfaction and brand loyalty. It gives you a fair idea of how likely your customers are to refer your product or service to others. 

Measuring your Net Promoter Score helps you to understand customers’ perceptions of your brand better. 

9. Focus Groups

A focus group is a group interview with a small subset of customers, typically 6–10 people. Participants are allowed to respond to open-ended questions regarding their experiences with your brand, product, or service. 

As a source of voice of the customer data, focus groups are one of the best ways to conduct more exploratory research. During the discussions, members of the group may often touch on things your company may never have thought to ask about.

Conclusion

When it comes time to make strategic business decisions, you need to be armed with facts. The success of every voice of customer research starts with knowing where to find relevant data. Conducting voice of customer research allows you to gather feedback from real people using actual examples. Instead of depending on hearsays, you can take advantage of solid customer data to grow your business. ď»żď»żď»ż

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