We've all had terrible - I mean, truly awful - customer experiences in our lives. I often have to remind myself that it's the process that needs work, not the people.
When we experience misrouted support chats, no support chat, and issues that take days to reach even the first tier of support, we all get frustrated.
As I write this, I have open and unanswered support tickets with companies.
When you are tasked with making sure something like what's described above doesn't happen at your company, there are some questions to consider:
- How do we get that feedback to the proper people to affect change?
- How do these companies know something is broken in the customer service process?
- How will they implement changes to improve the customer experience?
With Feedback Loops, of course!
What is a Feedback Loop?
Feedback Loop is a framework that serves as a way to increase productivity in an individual's performance, project teamwork, or process.
These processes can be both internal and external.
Here are some examples of internal processes:
- How well the hand-off of a lead from marketing to sales is working.
- What is your organization's average time-to-resolution (TTR for those of you deep in the customer service and support world), and how can it be improved?
While an external process might be when a potential buyer signs up for a free trial or freemium version of a product.
Feedback Loop might sound ambiguous, but, in reality, it's one of the easier things to implement in your organization.
And the benefits are huge.
Feedback Loops can be applied internally and externally and provide information to make data-driven decisions in your operations and GTM strategy. You will also increase transparency within your teams and foster a stronger sense of collaboration.
When everyone can see what needs to be done and how they play a part, all team members will begin to develop a feeling of ownership over the results.
When everyone is bought in, it shows.
So how do you use feedback loops in your GTM organization?
Anything that has measurable information and room for improvement can incorporate a Feedback Loop.
You will need to create a way to gather information, communicate that information, escalate it to the correct department, make changes, roll out changes, communicate the changes, and do it all over again.
And make it scalable.
Because what kind of operations professional would you be if you weren't thinking about scale?
Building the Feedback Loop Framework
Let's dive into how to build a framework for your Feedback Loops.
Steps to Building a GTM Feedback Loop Framework
- Define the Intake Process
- Define the Information Flow
- Implement Changes
- Change Management
1. Defining the Intake Process
This step will determine how to gather and centralize information to make your Feedback Loop as efficient as possible.
A great example of using a Feedback Loop in a GTM organization is Customer Satisfaction Surveys.
You can build these surveys into your post-sale workflow, determine when it should be presented and what information to gather (ex: after customer onboarding), so you can escalate it upstream in the organization to the correct stakeholders.
You can check out this article for some ideas on how to get started on defining your intake process.
2. Defining the Flow of Information
Now that you have your information captured and in a centralized place, you can define how to get it to the team to start making changes.
Suppose you are doing a Customer Satisfaction Survey. In that case, you'll want to make sure all the feedback goes to your Head of Customer Success or whoever is responsible for the customer satisfaction (CSAT) metric.
As a Revenue Operations practitioner, you should have access to tools and data to understand how information should flow between systems and the people to support a framework such as the Feedback Loop.
RevOps centralizes this survey data and automatically routes the responses to the Customer Success team.
3. Implementing Changes
Once your teams have the information, they can go back to the drawing board and figure out how to implement improvements in their workflow.
If SLAs set for follow-up on Marketing Qualified Leads (MQL) are not being met, the Feedback Loop can require that Marketing and Sales leadership get together with RevOps to improve the process.
Maybe leads are getting misrouted, leading to increased follow-up time, or are getting stuck in the queue due to a system error.
Maybe Sales doesn't clearly understand how to follow up with a Marketing Qualified Lead.
RevOps can send a short survey or questionnaire to the Sales Reps, gather feedback, route to stakeholders, and implement agreed-upon changes.
Maybe they need a new lead routing tool, which can be determined using this free GTM tool evaluation template.
4. Change Management
Whenever something changes, you've got to let people know.
The human brain doesn't like change; understanding this will help when you are rolling out any new process, especially rolling out changes from your feedback loop.
There are several models of change management, but to keep it simple, you can use Lewin's Change Model, which has three steps:
First, you have to help people understand why you are making a change.
For customers, that could sound like, "We heard your feedback and understand there have been challenges. We are working on a solution to change this experience for you."
For your internal teams, it could sound like, "We see there might be a few gaps in the lead routing process. We are working on some changes to make the workflow and experience better for you so that leads can get to the right rep at the right time."
According to MindTools, "Time and communication are the two keys to the changes occurring successfully. People need time to understand the changes, and they also need to feel highly connected to the organization throughout the transition period."
Your Feedback Loop will help people feel highly connected to the organization. From the external side, it will give the customer buy-in too.
The changes are being solidified, the organization is stable, and people are in a state of acceptance.
This avoids what MindTools calls a Transition Trap:
"Even though change is a constant in many organizations, this refreezing stage is still important. Without it, employees get caught in a transition trap where they aren't sure how things should be done, so nothing ever gets done to full capacity.
In the absence of a new frozen state, it is very difficult to tackle the next change initiative effectively."
So there you have it. Feedback Loops exist in all parts of the world, from nature to business.
Revenue Operations professionals - from individual contributors to leadership - can derive benefits from establishing a Feedback Loop framework for internal and external business processes.
With a GTM Feedback Loop framework to iterate and improve on processes, you will be able to accelerate your revenue.
After all, that's what RevOps is for - Right?