The X Factor

For every business, success or failure will ultimately be determined by how well you know your customer and how well you meet or exceed their expectations.

Do you know what your customer truly values? And do you know what they really want from you? What is their pain point?

If you know the answer to these critical, and on the face of it, quite simple questions, you can build trust - and it is trust that determines how successful or not your business will ultimately be.

By matching and meeting their expectations, you become a trusted supplier. But in a crowded market place, why else should they stick by or talk about you?

By understanding and exceeding their expectations, you add that irresistible edge they cannot help but talk about to contacts and friends; that elusive but all important X Factor or Wow! that lets your stand out.

So how do you acquire the answers to these questions and start your trust journey?

Not by assumption – because we all know where assumptions get us!



Listening to your customer is about properly connecting with them and is one of the best ways to build trust.  And not to the good news. That’s the easy part. Really listen to the negatives, which is surprisingly hard to do with an open mind. But it pays dividends, literally, as that’s where the value really lies.



Businesses often shy away from gathering ‘feedback’ as it’s time consuming and they many also want to avoid the potential for negative reviews.

However negative reviews can actually be the most helpful because they provide opportunity to:

  • Improve
  • Grow
  • Turn a negative into a positive
  • Build trust by resolving and solving the problem

Reviews can also be used to create time efficiencies, as they can be quickly re-purposed into highly effective marketing messaging.


So, how can you gather quality Feedback?

The best way to gather feedback from your customers is to really understand their preferences and any likely resistance.

For example, if your audience is primarily millennials you would be best to target through social media, whereas if your audience is mainly over 65’s you would be better to consider an email survey.

If you want to gather rich data for use in marketing, customer interviews are a good methodology but take a lot more time.

Where it is possible, on site or at point of purchase incentivised "leave a review and potentially win x” feedback gathering methods can also be highly effective.


What questions should you ask?

Keep it short to achieve maximum responses. Some examples:

Approach 1 example:

On a scale of 1 to 10 how would you rate your experience?

How could we have improved this score?

What could have made this score a perfect 10?


Approach 2 example:

On a scale of 1 to 10 how likely would you be to recommend us to a friend?

What would you tell a friend about us?

What would you change?

What would you keep the same?


Approach 3 example:

What supplier where you using before you came to us?

What did you like most about your previous supplier service?

What made you leave?

What do we do better?

What do you miss about the previous product/service/supplier?





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