Feedback From Loyal Customers. Easy? Think Twice

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Today I was reminded about how important (and how difficult) it is to get timely and honest customer feedback. 

There is a coffee shop close to our house.  My wife and I have made it a weekend tradition to take a 15-minute walk with our dog Rocky, grab our usual small drip coffee with a little ice, and sometimes share a bagel.

Everything about that place is nice: they make great coffee, the staff is super-nice.  Rocky always gets his “pup-cup” treat, which he is fond of… The staff already knows us and has our coffees for us as we walk into the door.

We sit outside and have a quiet morning time together.  

Today was the same as other days. But when we sat outside, I noticed that the area around the outside tables was quite dirty: the winds and rains over the past couple of days brought old leaves, plus a few occasional straws, lids, and straw covers.  The sitting area outside just didn’t fit the clean and “hip” look of the rest of the place. Clearly, this simply went unnoticed.

Now, here is the kicker: how do you tell this to the staff?  Maybe it’s me, but I find this simple thing extremely difficult. It is uncomfortable to confront the people who have been good to you, with your “suggestions”.  Next time they see you, you will be in their mind “that complainer guy”.  At the same time, you want to bring it to their attention somehow.  You can search for their website, find the contact page, and send a message.  But this seems like too much work.  Google/Facebook/Yelp review?  No!  I don’t want to hurt their business by posting my suggestions to the whole world.  So, in the end, I did what most would do in this case… nothing.

It made me think how valuable on-the-go anonymous feedback really is.  It is pretty much the only way a business can get thoughtful suggestions about service quality from its loyal customers.  Otherwise, they will smile and walk away.  Meanwhile, the problem continues…

With AirVote, a customer would only need to scan a QR code smiley posted as a sticker on the wall or on the table and send an anonymous internal note to the business.

If you are a business and can relate to this, give AirVote a try.

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