Don’t Take It Personally: Inviting Frank, Fair Feedback from Your Clientele and Using It to Improve

September 13, 2022

Asking for — and having the objective ability to hear — frank feedback from your clientele on your business and their experience with it is one of the BEST ways to improve and become the VERY best in class.

Is it always easy? No.

But is it oh so worth it? Abso-freakin-lutely.

Especially in small business — where we personally invest our blood, sweat and tears into our offers — there can be a tendency to take everything very personally.

One of the most freeing realisations though is that, actually, nothing in your business is about you.

Your business is fundamentally about solving people’s problems. If you are doing well, you will get positive feedback — which is great, but actually has nothing to do with you as a person.

Equally, if you get constructive feedback (or even downright criticism) again, it has NOTHING to do with you as a person. It means that there is a gap in your offer or in your processes that needs to be filled.

Treating it as such is critical especially if the feedback is delivered constructively.

In today’s podcast episode, we’re covering how to “operationalise” the collection of regular feedback from your clientele into your business to keep a pulse on their experience, to look for opportunities to improve and to, as we say inside of our OWN business, to be 1% better each and every single day.

Listen On: Apple Podcasts | Spotify

In our business, we operationalise the collection of regular feedback from our clients in two ways:

  1. “Publicly” – At several points during our client’s journey, we ask for “public feedback”, which means feedback that you put a name to. Usually, this results in great testimonials, especially when collected at points where our clients are most likely to “love” us — for example, after a big win or result.

    The problem with public feedback though is that it can sometimes be skewed. Sometimes, people will offer constructive feedback at these times, but many times they will simply stay silent.
  1. “Anonymously” – That is the reason why we also ask for “anonymous” feedback. We keep it short and sweet — no more than 3 to 5 questions and position it as “five minute feedback” so that it doesn’t feel like an imposition on anyone’s time.

    We keep it simple: what do you love about our program? What do you NOT love? How would you rate it out of 10, and why? And knowing what you now know, what would you pay for it?

    Importantly, no one needs to leave their details. The benefit of anonymous feedback is that it gives people NOT having a great experience the opportunity to tell us without causing friction, and usually elicits a lot of great ideas in terms of gaps and opportunities for improvement.

    We do this quarterly, and it gives us a super valuable insight into whether the overall experience is positive, where there are opportunities that we have overlooked to improve, and what we can do to be better.

    It has been GOLD for us, and I encourage you to do the same in YOUR business.

Here’s five things to think about when incorporating something similar:

1. Realise It’s Not About You

You’ll need to leave your ego at the door when you go through this process and look at everything that comes through with an objective lens.

Ultimately, none of it is about you, and the process is a fantastic opportunity to see what your clientele would otherwise be saying to their friends and peers about your offers “behind your business back”.

If you are incorporating this into your business on a quarterly basis, it will also, for the most part, allow you to “pulse check” your business BEFORE things become a big issue. If there are several clients or students all mentioning one thing, you can fix it fast — rather than allowing it to continue, and snowball over time.

2. Refine One Offer

Especially when it comes to digital products, there is SO MUCH POWER in refining ONE offer.

When you launch, you learn — and it is entirely unrealistic to expect that your offer will be perfect when you first release it to the world.

By releasing it and incorporating regular feedback into your workflow, you have the opportunity to continually refine it over time to be the absolute BEST it can possibly be.

For example, we are almost two years into Launchpad, and we have made more refinements and rework that you could possibly imagine to improve the client experience over time.

If we had LOTS of offers in our business, it would be extremely difficult to do this without losing focus or bandwidth. Laser focus and continually refinement of one thing allows you to make it AMAZING over time.

3. Fight for Feedback

Incorporating feedback loops into your workflow is powerful, but one thing to keep in mind is that it’s not always EASY to get it from people.

You can’t, for example, simply post a link to a survey once inside of your Facebook group and expect that people will answer. We post several times, we personally outreach to every single client, we add it to our client inbox email signature — we do it ALL and make sure that every single client has every opportunity to give us fair feedback.

If they don’t, they don’t — but we’d much rather hear anything constructive in a survey early so we have time to address it than to hear it in an exit interview or by word of mouth externally.

By giving our clients the opportunity to give us both useful and constructive feedback “to our face”, we normalise the process of continual improvement and encourage them to let US know if they are having a less than stellar experience in any area.

When THEY know that we are committed to excellence, the process of feedback becomes “part of doing business with us”, rather than them thinking that they don’t like something and feeling like “that’s just the way it is”.

4. Action It!

Give your client base every opportunity to give it to direct feedback, but when you do so make sure that it is accompanied with clear instructions that it will be reviewed seriously.

No one wants to fill out a survey that then collects dust — they want to be seen and heard.

In our business, once our surveys have been completed, we will review everything, and add it into a program updates roadmap in order of priority.

I then have dedicated time set aside on a monthly basis to make program updates and will pull from this feedback to do so. When we make updates, we tell our clients!

For example, we recently completed an Anonymous Five Minute Feedback cycle, and a number of clients mentioned that they wished that there was a big picture roadmap to give them a “birds-eye” overview of their full 12 months in the program.

We could clearly see how this would improve the client experience and results, so we prioritised it and created it quickly.

We then TOLD our clients so they knew their feedback was being heard.

5. The Client Isn’t ALWAYS Right

There is a slight nuance to be aware of when actioning feedback.

The first is that you can’t please absolutely EVERYONE, so not every piece of feedback will always be incorporated.

For example, one person might LOVE your delivery method in relation to your workbooks, and another might not.

The goal is to make sure you are serving MOST people, and that you can look at the reasons BEHIND any “outlier” feedback.

For example, is it that the person doesn’t understand the workbook used for program delivery, and there needs to be clearer training on it?

The other thing to be mindful of is “scope creep”.

For example, if you have a course and you get feedback that there “should be fortnightly 1:1 calls”, that would be contrary to the expectations set out when joining and likely wouldn’t make financial sense.

This is where you might want to think about whether your FRONT END marketing does a good enough job of being clear on the parameters of the offer, or whether you need to make adjustments.

We also recommend again looking at the reason BEHIND the feedback and seeing if it can be incorporated in a different way.

Conclusion

Asking for and objectively receiving feedback inside of your business is, quite simply, the BEST way to become the best.

Set your ego aside, don’t take it personally and commit to making your offer 1% better every single day. Before you know it, you will be a year or two years down the track and you will be best in class.

Just you wait and see 🙂

Links and Resources:

PS Whenever you’re ready, here’s a few ways we can help you!

1. Are you ready to create, launch and scale your flagship digital course in 2022? Head to

steviesayssocial.com/launchpad to apply for our 12 month, high touch group coaching program.

2. Want to get your hands on our DONE-FOR-YOU lead magnet template for creating your own lead magnet in 60 minutes or less? You can get it for FREE at www.steviesayssocial.com/leadmagnet now!

3. Want to get paid to generate more leads into your business than you can poke a stick at? You need our $57 Paid to Grow Workshop and Bundle series (we are consistently told that this is the best program our students have ever bought and it’s a steal!)

4. Want to start a wildly successful podcast? Check out our FREE masterclass where we share with you our complete five step strategy!

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