Our net promoter score — what you really think about us

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The net promoter score (NPS) survey is the perfect way to gauge how users really feel about you and your products or services, like the Checkbot of customer satisfaction. So, last year, we decided to undertake our first NPS survey to see how we were doing in your eyes.

To get an accurate picture, we sent our NPS survey to our entire customer base. The NPS survey serves as the perfect icebreaker for getting a better discussion going with end users as in doing so, they will feel we really respect their opinions. In addition, this will help us measure their loyalty and prevent churn.

But it doesn’t stop there. The NPS survey needs to be followed up and this must be done directly by us, the company. Plus, it needs to be repeated to gauge how well we’re doing. As Fred Reichfeld, a Fellow of the management consultancy Bain & Company and the father of NPS explains, “It’s the one number you want to grow!” For example, according to Joshua Kushner, the net promoter score of health insurers is a shockingly low 4, while Amazon’s is 74.

Net promoter score: what the NPS is that?

It is a simple and popular metric that asks the question, “On a scale of 0 to 10, how likely are you to recommend our products to a colleague?” We divide the respondents into detractors, passives (more about them later) and promoters. We then minus the number of detractors (who awarded us 0-6 out of 10) from the number of promoters (who gave us 9-10 out of 10), divide that by the number of responses and multiply that answer by 100, producing our NPS.

NPS calculation formula

So, in our case it was 261 (promoters) minus 48 (detractors) = 213. Divide 213 by 448 (the number of responses) = 0.48. Multiply 0.48 by 100 and you arrive at our NPS of 48.

A diagram of IDEA StatiCa's NPS

In addition, it is necessary to look at the NPS results from an absolute and relative perspective. The absolute NPS is a comparison of all scores from all industries. And according to Bain & Company:

Above 0 = good

Above 20 = favorable

Above 50 = excellent

Above 80 = world class

The relative perspective is split into B2B and B2C and looks at the industry benchmarks for both. As our business model is mostly B2B, the industry norm for software is an NPS of 44, which shows our NPS is heading in the right direction.

Average NPS of software companies

Got it, but what does promoter, passive and detractor mean?

Promoters are our loyal customers, and they score us between 9-10. They are great brand advocates and loyal customers and help fuel growth.

Passives are respondents who give us a score between 7-8, they are not really that loyal but also normally won’t say anything negative. However, with the right approach, we can transform them into promoters.

Detractors are those who give us a score from 0 to 6. Although they are the least likely to recommend us, their feedback can really help us understand any issues we have within our product portfolio and their needs and expectations or issues they have with communicating with us about them. Maybe even our products are already perfect, they just don’t know how to use it or are overlooking features that already exist.

Go on, how did we do?

Detractors gonna detract

Of the 48 detractors, 16% of them left us a negative comment.

One user who gave us a score of 1 said, “In order for any software launch to be successful, users must be coached to a level where they can confidently take off on their own. Either by in-house training by expert users, webinars, or external training. But without training it's more time consuming to reach a sufficient level of proficiency.” So, a follow-up to that was to point the respondent in the direction of our resources section and, as necessary, walk them through how it works and how they can get the maximum out of it.

Plus, when gathering user feedback, we ask them to identify any gaps in our resources that are critical for them to cover. Out of this, we totally redesigned our Campus to enable our users to get up and running even quicker than before. And to ensure that we make these resources as discoverable as possible, we even reworked our website search function to help visitors find what they need, and fast! In terms of our webinars, we make sure that our webinar strategy is to base them on user need and making them actionable. Plus, with the Support Center redesign and addition of two-hour training courses, redesigned tutorials, and new downloadable sample projects, the aim is to make everything focused, understandable, practical, and valuable.

Another detractor who scored us as a 2 described their frustration, “Idea Statica does not listen to the customer at all!!!!! I asked for 2 years to be able to preset selections for reports: it's not difficult for programming and so useful for users.” There is a clear need here to speak to the customer and identify their precise requirements and thank them for alerting us to it. We can then explain to them how we decide which new features are prioritized and developed. This can help avert further frustration and tell them we are listening to them. Plus, that our road map is not based on some random algorithm but genuine customer business needs.

Passive comments

Of the 139 passives, 31% left a positive comment and 0.4% a negative one.

One passive user commented that “It is a very malleable and powerful software, however, does not offer much explanation when it comes to errors.” This is a user experience issue and a follow-up call identifying precisely what the missing “explanation” helped us discover what this meant and whether other users were experiencing something similar. But without that discovery call, we were not going to able to address it properly and help them feel better served by our attentiveness. As a result, we implemented better error management messages and when it comes to modeling errors, we're adding better descriptions directly in modeling window as well as informative messages in the reports.

When it comes to the bugs themselves, when we release a patch or major release, we publish a list of all solved incidents along with release notes so users can understand fully all improvements and what has been fixed.

Promoters’ delight

Of our 261 promoters, 68% left a comment, 86% of which were entirely positive, and none were negative.

Of course, having only promoters is the ideal goal but if you ignore them, you could turn them into passives, or worse, detractors next time!

One outright promoter told us, “IDEA StatiCa provides accurate results for almost any problem you can think of. IDEA StatiCa also is very open to listening to what their customers wants and needs are and do an excellent job of meeting those items.” This is a perfect and clear endorsement of our software and services, which we are always delighted to hear because it means we are listening to our customers and focusing on their needs.

Some comments are complimentary but have other concerns wrapped inside. For example, we scored the perfect 10 with one promoter, and their comment was, “This is the best software for steel connection and concrete deep beam calculations on the market. It has some junk, some features missing from complete perfection (like steel connections to composite and concrete members etc.), but it scores easily 10/10.” Read between the lines and although it is a happy customer, there are still some aspects missing for them. The solution? We kept our customers in the loop to see how critical these factors were. We also looked at getting customers such as these enrolled as beta testers so we can leverage their know-how to ensure that we keep the customers’ needs at the heart of everything we do.

Another promoter gave us a score of 9 with the feedback, “Perfect UI, technically smart. But please make the undo better!” This gave us a very clear suggestion for how we could help improve their experience further.

What next for our NPS?

Reacting to the NPS survey and contacting respondents is the ideal opportunity to cement our customer relationships further. However, a reported 97% of companies do not even follow up on the survey with an email to customers to let them know they value their opinions and want to act, where appropriate. It means they are missing a great chance to identify valued customers and bring them into the loop to validate their product road map and confirm their products’ value proposition.

And if they are a promoter?

This group of respondents are our loyal advocates, and we need to keep them that way. Remember, they all have social media channels and can even provide us with testimonials and customer success stories, and having others telling people how well our products work is much more valid than us blowing our own trumpet. So, this gives us the perfect opportunity to see what it is about our product that we are doing well in their opinion. By following up, we can start to get a better idea of our competitive advantage and what we can see as our significant business strengths, or even weaknesses.

And if they are a detractor?

This group of people are the ones who are most likely to churn or even spread negative information about us and our products. It is, therefore, vital to make them feel their opinion is valuable and respected and that they are making a positive impact on improving or refining our products further, thus helping move them into the promoters’ camp.

Which questions or comments does our follow-up contain?

In the follow-up, we wanted to express our gratitude to the respondents for taking the time to fill out the survey and that we would like to learn some of the reasons behind the number they gave us, for example:

  1. Which features or aspects of our product most impressed you?
  2. What were we missing that prevented you having the perfect experience?
  3. Why did you choose IDEA StatiCa over our competitors? = great for understanding our position on the competitive landscape
  4. Would you be prepared to provide us with a testimonial or case study? Or even follow us on LinkedIn, if you don’t already, and leave us a review there?

For detractors, we welcomed their honest and constructive feedback, and let them know we will use this to ensure we make our products better fit their needs. For promoters, we told them we appreciate their high score and their confirmation that we are building a product that aligns with their requirements.

Of course…

Based on the responses and comments from the actual NPS survey, the questions above were better tailored to address those real elephants in the room. Plus, with all customer feedback collection activities, having a clear goal of what success means is essential. And not all these questions are appropriate for each classification of respondent. Afterall, the ultimate target is to have more brand evangelists, and to do that, some serious ongoing follow-up relationship building needs to have taken place!

Let’s do the NPS again

On February 14, 2023 (Valentine’s Day – it is about customer love, after all), we will be sending our second NPS survey out to you. This is an excellent way for you to share your valuable feedback, opinions, and suggestions. We are so happy that we can help bring you, our customers, even closer to what we are creating or have planned and gives you the ideal channel to contribute to and influence IDEA StatiCa’s future development, get your response noticed, and hear back from us once the results have been processed. Afterall, we design our software completely around making your work faster, safer, and more cost-effective and your feedback and comments are the final vital stamps of approval we need.