“We hope you had a good customer experience, now let us spoil it with a survey…”


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Sometimes a good customer experience can be undermined by a lousy customer experience survey. A perverse part of me rather enjoys the irony of that, but that’s probably just me. It happened a while ago following a concert I attended (I blogged about it here, if you missed it), and it happened again to me recently.

On the Thursday I upgraded my mobile (or cell, if you prefer) phone. I used the network provider’s store because it’s near the office, and because I wanted to play with the phone before committing to owning it for the next 18 months. The woman in the store was very good. She gave me plenty of time to play with the phone, answered my questions, and transferred my photos and numbers from my old handset to the new one. She even looked at my account to check that I was on a contract that matched my usage, and gave me a 10% discount on my monthly payment. That’s only about £3, but that’s a pint of beer in Carolyn Currency, so I’m happy.

On Saturday morning I got an SMS message inviting me to take a survey. The message read “Thanks for upgrading with Orange. To help us assess our service at 4.37pm on Sept 10th, we’d like to ask you for some feedback. Please reply “yes”.

Initially I was confused because I hadn’t used any of Orange’s services on Sept 10th since I was at a wedding and my phone was switched off. I’d also had far too much champagne to be able to operate a new phone. However, I’ve only ever done test SMS surveys on Confirmit, so was interested to see what a live SMS survey is like, so I replied with “yes” and waited. And waited.

3 hours later I received a question saying “Based on your recent purchase, on a scale of 0–10, how likely are you to recommend Orange?” So it was indeed a survey about my upgrade, but it had the wrong time and date in the initial text which confusing. I replied with a score and waited for question #2. Another hour passed before I got that question which asked if the sales rep in the store was knowledgeable and again, I responded with a good score.

And that was it. There were no further questions; which is fine if they got all the information they needed, but there was no “Thanks for your feedback” or acknowledgment that my last score was received. Now, I know this isn’t a dreadful survey, but it’s pretty half-hearted. SMS is a great tool in situations like this, but like all surveys, it needs to be executed with the customer in mind. Getting details wrong, being slow to follow up, and leaving me feeling like the process was incomplete just falls rather flat, which is a shame considering that I left the Orange shop feeling quite the opposite.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Carolyn Hall
Carolyn Hall is a Product Marketing Manager with Confirmit. Primary focus on creating marketing and PR materials that focus on the business value of technology. Articles published in a number of marketing and customer-focused publications, and experience of hosting round table session with senior marketing executives.


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