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Limiting survey questions and utilizing open-ended questions with AI-enhanced analysis

This article was based on the interview with Daniel Erickson of Viable by Greg Kihlström for The Agile Brand with Greg Kihlström podcast. Listen to the original episode here:

In the podcast episode, Daniel Erickson of Viable discusses the importance of limiting survey questions and asking open-ended questions to gather qualitative customer data effectively. He suggests that most surveys have too many questions, which may be convenient for data analysis but does not prioritize the customer’s perspective.

The first piece of advice given is to greatly limit the number of questions asked in surveys. Instead of bombarding customers with numerous multiple-choice questions, it is recommended to ask the three most salient questions and allow customers to provide answers in their own words. This approach allows for more detailed and personalized feedback from customers, providing valuable insights into their thoughts and preferences. This also creates a better customer experience (CX).

The guest also highlights the importance of using open-ended questions rather than multiple-choice questions. Open-ended questions, such as “How can we improve the product for you?” or “What is the main benefit you receive from this product?”, allow customers to express their opinions and provide specific feedback. This type of feedback is more valuable than simply asking customers to rank features or choose from a list of options.

Furthermore, the guest emphasizes the significance of context in survey design. With the availability of tracking tools, companies can now understand the experiences customers have with their products or services. By tailoring survey triggers to specific events or experiences, companies can gather feedback that is directly relevant to their goals. For example, if a customer rates a delivery app with one star, it may be more effective to directly contact the customer rather than sending a survey. On the other hand, a five-star rating may prompt a survey asking about the customer’s positive experiences or recommendations.

Lastly, the guest predicts that the future of surveys will involve smarter and more personalized approaches. Instead of asking a broad question like “How can we improve this product for you?”, surveys could become more intelligent and dig deeper into specific areas of interest. This would enable companies to extract more specific and actionable insights from customer feedback.

The importance of limiting survey questions and asking open-ended questions to gather qualitative customer data effectively should not be understated. By prioritizing the customer’s perspective and using artificial intelligence (AI) analytics to analyze the data, companies can gain valuable insights into customer sentiment and make data-driven decisions to enhance the customer experience. As technology continues to advance, surveys are likely to become even smarter and more personalized, enabling companies to gather even more detailed and actionable feedback from their customers.

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