You’ve heard it a million times: never publish the first draft of anything and get some feedback to revise it. So if you wouldn’t publish an ebook, whitepaper, blog post, or even a tweet without a second pair of eyes on it—why would you avoid getting customer feedback?
As a B2B company, you might be thinking: our market’s too niche, we can’t get the same amount of feedback as a B2C. It won’t be worth the resources. Or perhaps, because none of your customers have indicated they’re unhappy, a feedback program wouldn’t uncover anything new or actionable. But you won’t find out if you don’t ask—kind of like you might not catch a typo in your blog post, but your coworker does.
Value of Collecting Feedback
Feedback is a great way to gain a better understanding of the complex relationships between B2B companies and their customers. Having a dedicated feedback process will provide more insight into what your company is doing well, what it could be doing better, and what it might need to fix completely.
Cost of Customer Acquisition vs. Customer Retention
It’s no secret that B2B sales cycles, often involving many within both the supplier and client organizations, lead to a high price tag for customer acquisition. Investing in a customer feedback program lets a business check in on existing relationships and address issues before customers churn.
Customer retention not only costs less than acquisition, but you’re also much more likely to sell to an existing customer than a new one.
While often times B2B companies can’t compete with the volume of customers B2C companies have, B2B does require a closer relationship with a client than B2C companies have with their customers. This means customer feedback in B2B might not have the same quantity as B2C, but because the relationship is closer and more complex, the feedback can have a higher quality with more insight into the customer journey for your business.
Feedback for B2B companies is also likely to be more actionable because of a lower customer volume. Addressing issues and correcting mistakes closes the feedback loop and shows you listen and care about your customers.
Value of Using Feedback
Customer feedback isn’t just useful for retention and improving your own products and services. Turn feedback around to show prospects the value you provide.
Bigger Commitment Purchases
B2B purchases are often big commitments that affect the whole company, like a new supplier for a particular material or a new software suite. It’s like buying a house every time you make a purchase decision—there’s a lot to consider, a decent chunk of change involved, and extremely important to make the right choice. What happens if you buy the wrong house? You’re stuck.
Positive feedback turned into testimonials and case studies are proof of your product or service solving a customer’s problem. When information like this is readily available on your website or tucked into your sales teams’ materials, you can ensure future customers they’re not buying the wrong house.
Multiple Decision Makers
You wouldn’t buy a house by yourself, would you? Even if you would be living alone, you would consult a close friend or family member for help picking the right one. As is the case with most B2B purchases, there’s multiple decision makers involved when buying a house; and each decision maker has their own goals in mind. For example, with a house, your parents might want you to live in a safe, quiet neighborhood, but your friends think it’d be cooler to be within walking distance of a great nightlife scene.
At the end of the day, your house is your house, but you’d want some reassurance the neighborhood is safe, or certain amenities are close by. Using customer feedback for testimonials, case studies, and even bringing in reviews from third party websites, can help answer every decision-maker’s concern.
Remember: Nobody’s Perfect
Asking for feedback is difficult emotionally—what if someone doesn’t like your product, or they didn’t feel they had a good experience? You still did your best, right? Absolutely. Feedback, even negative and especially constructive, is still valuable.
Remember that movie all your friends love and you thought was just okay? There’s no way to please everyone, and sometimes customers won’t be completely happy. The good news is, unlike that only okay movie, if a customer is less than satisfied with a piece of their experience, your business has the opportunity to fix it—if not for them, definitely for future customers.
Having some less-than-perfect reviews on third party websites (like G2 Crowd or Capterra) of your business is actually good. We all know nobody can do everything right all the time, and seeing that reflected in a near-perfect rating shows that both your customers and your business are honest.
The HubSpot Service Hub for Customer Feedback
Looking to start collecting customer feedback for your organization? The HubSpot Service Hub offers a feedback solution that helps you build and send out Net Promoter Score, Customer Effort, and Customer Experience surveys. Get notified when someone responds to a survey, collect all survey data in one place, and start finding the value in your customers’ feedback.