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How objective is your Voice of the Customer data?

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My husband received this focus group invitation in an email this week. From a personal perspective, part of me is jealous that he gets the opportunity to participate, most likely while noshing on yummy appetizers and sipping drinks. Another part of me is excited about the prospect of receiving a gift card that could be used for a very nice date night for the 2 of us. And yet another part of me looks at it from my professional perspective as a CX consultant, and wonders how objective the feedback will be from a focus group conducted in this manner.

Voice of the Customer data is a critical component of your customer experience! You may think you know what your customers want, but do you really? Or, are you just thinking about what you may want as a customer? Often, there is a big difference between what you want, and what your customers actually expect. And, let’s face it – just as we think our child is the most beautiful and perfect; it is not uncommon for our unconditional bias to also extend to our professions, and for us to lull ourselves into believing that the way we are doing it is the best way.

I would expect that this focus group is one of many ongoing Voice of the Customer initiatives at McCormick & Schmick’s and their parent company, Landry’s. But, it definitely gives me a lot of food for thought (pardon the pun!)! How are you gathering/capturing your Voice of the Customer data? What steps have you taken to ensure the feedback is as objective as possible?

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