As NPS loses relevance, marketing must evaluate and improve last mile performance

It is possible to use customer satisfaction scores to improve loyalty but, to do so, it’s vital to start at the CX front lines. Brenton Gill on NPS.

Think about when you dish out a swift five stars to an Uber driver; you’d be hard pressed to find many users who’ve avoided this process altogether. Filling out generic, lengthy satisfaction surveys may provide a welcome profusion of data, but is the NPS scheme an outdated and impractical drag on the (already saturated) free time of the average consumer? This is the overarching issue with the process of NPS. In theory, they provide a fantastic measure of brand loyalty and product advocacy, but the problem is the information is generally only captured from a highly engaged consumer – not your average Joe.

In the day and age of customer convenience, NPS and detailed customer surveys are often viewed as invasive and time-consuming, meaning that consumers wanting to simply voice their approval or dissatisfaction either can’t be bothered, or don’t have the attention span to move past a simple ‘voice of customer’ metric rating of five stars. The intention of NPS has been to identify issues with brand loyalty and customer satisfaction, to gain legitimate feedback and to respectively improve upon this. However, it has become evident that loyalty and satisfaction aren’t necessarily synonymous.

With these assessments in mind, it’s possible to use customer satisfaction scores to improve sales and build on loyalty, but it’s vital to start at the front line in order to do this. After observing the decline in relevance of NPS data for quite some time, it’s evident that working with major clients who have a zeal for instantaneous feedback means it just isn’t feasible to use such systems. This has elicited a culture of ‘voice of customer’ ratings, which ultimately provide an overall satisfaction score without inconveniencing those rating the service.

Much like the all important Uber rating, the future of customer experience reporting seems to be set on a five-point scale. Consumers are reluctant to assess an organisation as a whole and are more drawn to individual experience reviews, such as rating their encounter with the delivery of a specific item, or judging the performance of their chauffeur from bedroom to boardroom when late for work. Assessing isolated customer experiences, rather than requesting a vague overview of an organisation, is increasingly important as we put more weight on CX and its relation to brand advocacy.

Logistics and transport use in delivery during the last mile process needs to be seen more as a marketing tool, rather than an operational function. The Australian logistics industry has a fair way to go when it comes to challenging its European counterparts, and much of this is down to evaluating and improving upon last mile performances. NPS is quickly losing its relevance as the primary indicator of customer satisfaction. With the tides veering towards CX-centric evaluations, the necessity for ‘voice of customer’ review systems is simply dampening the demand for NPS.

Brenton Gill is the co-founder and managing director of Radaro.

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