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Now HERE is a great email survey invitation!

Equinox Fitness runs a chain of health clubs in and around several major cities.  I have never been in an Equinox club, but I hear good things about them from friends who are members in New York and Boston.

One of these friends sent me an invitation he had received recently to provide feedback.  Clearly, as a member, he found the invitation remarkable enough to forward it to me.  He also tells me that it was dead easy to complete the survey.

You can see the survey attached here.  It asks the question "How likely would you recommend Equinox to a friend or a family member?"  (Yes, I agree, they left out an important verb in the question.)  The body of the email includes a large, easy to read clickable box for each potential answer from 0 through 10.  When you click on one, you are taken to the survey, where your answer to the first question is completed for you (I think you can change it, if you like), and you are asked to explain your rating.

A few things I really like about this invitation: 

  • Very clean, simple, branded visual display
  • Gets right to the point -- no long preamble
  • Tells you right up front that there are only three questions
  • Allows you to answer the first one while still reading the invitation -- skips at least one and maybe two steps over most similar surveys
  • Personal.  A human being in a leadership role "signed" it

 Equinox email invitation


Creating Promoters at Cancer Treatment Centers of America

Cancer Treatment Centers of America is a chain of specialist medical centers with a mission to treat cancer patients as if they were family members.  Their staff constantly talk about the "mother test" used in decision making:  Is this how you would want your mother treated if she were in this hospital?  It's a variation on the Golden Rule, and it seems to guide lots of big and small decisions around their centers.
In February 2009, CTCA hosted a meeting of the NPS Loyalty Forum at their Phoenix facility.  During the meeting -- where Horst Schulze, a CTCA board member, legendary leader of the Ritz Carlton hotel chain and now Chairman and CEO of West Paces Hotel group gave a great talk that I'll summarize later -- CTCA staff gave us facility tours and explained how their service model works.  Moreover, they introduced us to some patients and shared some of their patient feedback with us.  Impressive on all dimensions.

Click to read more ...


Begging for scores at Hilton

I have been staying at a number of Hilton Hotels around the country, and in various forms, there seems to be a consistent pattern related to customer feedback:  All their hotels seem to be working on improving their SCORES.  It is possible they may also be working on improving the EXPERIENCE, but it isn't apparent to me.  In the meantime, these misguided efforts to get the guests to give a particular score on a survey are a huge distraction and a major mistake.

A few examples:

Hilton Garden Inn, Phoenix (click to enlarge)

At the Hilton Garden Inn, Phoenix, a note was slipped under my door on the night before check-out proclaiming that "we pride ourselves on being a '10'hotel" and letting the guest know that "Hilton considers anything less than a score of nine to be unacceptable so it is very important that every aspect of your stay be a '10.'"

Click to read more ...


Don't just read the text, pore over the data!

I am often asked what I think of an article that appeared about 18 months ago in the Journal of Marketing regarding the link between revenue growth and NPS.  My simple answer:  the data and analysis in that article support our own findings that Net Promoter is statistically just about as good as anything else out there.

But that is not the whole story for three reasons: 

  • Their analysis may or may not be statistically sound, but it is managerially and strategically unsophisticated
  • It is based on data of questionable value for this purpose
  • They miss the whole point of NPS, which is that while it is “good enough” as a predictor and explainer of relative competitive growth, its real strength lies in how powerful it can be as a tool for organizational change

Data tableBecause the article’s data analysis, based on Norwegian consumer surveys, falls far short of what we can do with our clients' data, it fails to support (or challenge appropriately) what the most sophisticated NPS users all know:  done properly, Net Promoter Scores explain a lot of the variation in competitive organic revenue growth rates.  Read that last sentence carefully, because the language is quite specific.  In fact, if you are going to reduce your customer metrics down to a single question, the Net Promoter methodology is most often the one that does the best job.

Click to read more ...

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