With over 2 billion active accounts on social media worldwide, as at January 2015 according to We Are Social, and more and more websites making customer reviews a key part of their online offering, consumers can now quickly and easily share and view feedback before making even the smallest decision.
As a visitor to a website such as Airbnb, who’s community feel has had an important part in its meteoric rise into the mainstream, you can learn from the experiences, positive or negative, of others and make an informed decision as to how you spend your valuable time and hard-earned money; based on knowledge not perceptions.
This same principle applies to your club…
If you are basing all your decisions on instinct and personal preference you could be blissfully unaware of the impact this might be having on member experience. Even if your facility is doing well, could you be doing better?
But why, specifically, should you listen to your members and what insight can you gain from their feedback?
By listening to the voice of your members, you can learn what is important to them and improve the member experience. You are not seeking feedback for the sake of doing so, going through the motions and filing it away somewhere never to be seen again. You should be investing in the customer as the focus of your business, taking the time to understand them and their expectations of you as an organisation.
With this information, you can start to make decisions that can have an impact on the perceptions of your most important stakeholder group; your members.
Negative feedback should be embraced and can inform changes that will hopefully improve the experience for your existing member base. Positive feedback can be used to grow your club organically through the recruitment of new members via referrals: According to the 2015 Global Trust in Advertising report, published by Nielsen, 83% of people globally trust recommendations from people they know.
By seeking member feedback you are also lessening the chances of, for example, a member sharing a heat of the moment rant with the world via Facebook or Twitter; giving them instead the opportunity to vent their frustrations in a safe and constructive way in a private environment. And, with Nielsen’s 2015 study revealing 66% of consumers worldwide say they trust opinions posted online by a fellow consumer, whether they know them personally or not, you want to do your utmost to ensure you are being talked about positively.
Gaining insight into how your members feel about your centre is important your success, in many ways. It can help you improve your current practices, grow your membership base and protect you from bad word of mouth. Your members are ready to tell you how they feel, all you need to do is give them a structured way to do so. You might just be surprised at how much you will learn!