New Research Benchmarks Best Practices in Listening to the Voice of the Customer

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Insights into How Top Performers Succeed with Social Media Monitoring and Customer Feedback Management Initiatives

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The voice of the customer can be deafening. Yet, in the past, many companies chose to tune much of it out, using the corporate equivalent of noise-cancelling headphones. Today, however, such indifference is a recipe for disaster.

Gleanster today announced the publication of two “Gleansight” benchmark reports that document best practices in listening to the voice of the customer. The research, based on the experiences of hundreds of companies, can be downloaded for free from the Gleanster website.

The reports are entitled Social Media Monitoring and Customer Feedback Management. Both reports are 21 pages in length and include a vendor landscape section with analyst commentary about most of the related technology solution providers.

The reports come at an opportune time. After all, listening to the voice of the customer has become a rallying cry for companies trying to improve business performance by meeting consumer needs in a more effective and timely fashion.

The first report, Social Media Monitoring, explores how Top Performers are filtering relevant comments from useless chatter and turning the findings into true business value. It looks at what technologies, staffing, skills and processes are required to achieve the desired business outcomes, which can range from brand reputation management and new product development to increased marketing, sales and customer support effectiveness.

“Social media is an ongoing conversation in which consumers spontaneously talk about their likes and dislikes, frustrations or great experiences with brands and companies,” said co-author Jim Nail, research fellow at Gleanster and former principal analyst at Forrester Research. “But sifting through this vast ocean of content, identifying relevant posts and extracting useful insights requires more than just a good search engine.”

For Top Performers, the most compelling reasons to implement a social media monitoring solution include increasing customer satisfaction and generating customer insights. According to 94% of the 297 companies surveyed, the top challenge is to identify and proactively engage with top influencers.

The second report, Customer Feedback Management, explores how Top Performers are working to capture, integrate, enhance, analyze and act upon customer feedback in a systematic fashion. It looks at the technologies, analytic capabilities, business processes, organizational resources and performance metrics these companies are putting into place as well as the linkage between customer feedback management and corporate growth and profitability.

“The voice of the customer can be deafening,” said co-author Jeff Zabin, research director at Gleanster and former research fellow at Aberdeen Group. “Yet, in the past, many companies chose to tune much of it out, using the corporate equivalent of noise-cancelling headphones. Today, however, such indifference is a recipe for disaster.” According to Zabin, companies not only need to pay close attention to customer feedback but actively solicit it on an ongoing basis across all customer touchpoints, all parts of the company and all stages of the customer relationship lifecycle.

Related “Gleansight” benchmark reports include Social Media Marketing and Online Customer Communities.

About Gleanster
Gleanster is an IT market research firm that benchmarks best practices in technology-enabled business initiatives. Gleanster generates actionable insights that allow companies to make smart business decisions and match their needs with vendor solutions. The research, which draws from the experiences of tens of thousands of industry practitioners, is predicated on four guiding principles: specificity, objectivity, brevity and clarity. Gleanster ascertains how Top Performers achieve their desired business objectives — and how Everyone Else can, too. For more information, please visit http://www.gleanster.com.

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