How to Set Up Your First NPS Campaign

by SmileBack
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8 min read

Net Promoter Score (NPS) data gives you valuable insights into what your customers think about your business relationship. This window into customer sentiment at a high level helps you gauge:

  • How the business relationship is going (i.e. are your customers delighted, disappointed, somewhere in between, and why?)
  • What you’re doing well (and any areas for improvement)
  • If you are delivering, from the customer perspective, what you promised in the contract
  • New opportunities to improve the relationship, whether through cross-selling, upselling, tweaks to processes, or more

The more that you understand customer sentiment, the stronger relationships you’ll be able to build. And the happier your customers are, the more loyal they’ll become, which works to increase retention and mitigate churn.

But it can be hard to picture how NPS affects your MSP on a day-to-day basis. What does collecting NPS data actually entail? And how can you do it effectively? 

In this guide, we’ll walk you through what NPS campaigns are and why they’re so important, and provide a step-by-step template for how to set up your initial NPS survey.

Table of contents

  • What is a Net Promoter Score (NPS) campaign? 
  • How NPS campaigns help you improve business relationships
  • How to set up your first NPS campaign 
  • Wrapping up

What is a Net Promoter Score (NPS) campaign?

Net Promoter Score (NPS) campaigns are measured on a scale from 0-10. 

They are structured as a question, such as: “How likely are you to recommend [business name] to a friend or colleague?”.

The answers are broken down into three categories:

  • 9-10 (i.e. “very likely”) are grouped as promoters
  • 7-8 (i.e. “somewhere in the middle”) are grouped as passives 
  • 0-6 (i.e. “not likely”) are grouped as detractors 

The overall score is then calculated as the percentage of promoters minus the percentage of detractors. The final score ranges from 100 on the highest end to -100 on the lowest end. 

The higher the score, the most satisfied your customers are. 

It’s important to note that what is considered to be a good score can vary greatly by industry. Anything in the positive range should be your minimum goal, but generally, anything above 50 is considered top-notch. 

Top Tip: Read our help center article on how NPS is calculated to learn more. 

Together, CSAT and NPS scores help you gauge customer satisfaction and loyalty. By understanding both day-to-day and overall job performance sentiment, you can work to improve the customer experience.

We recommend running both CSAT and NPS surveys simultaneously. Here’s why.

How NPS campaigns help you improve business relationships

CSAT helps you keep your finger on the operational pulse. But measuring daily interactions only gives you half of the information you need to gauge customer sentiment. 

Say you receive overwhelmingly positive CSAT feedback, giving you a best-in-class score of 98. This tells you that your service desk team is doing a great job at responding to tickets quickly and resolving them with a high satisfaction rate. 

But this only tells you that your customers are 98% satisfied with your service desk. It does not necessarily mean they are 98% satisfied with your business relationship.

Providing fast and effective service responses to tickets alone does not automatically lead to customer loyalty and retention. 

Importantly, NPS data opens up the door to ask deeper, more pointed questions of your business that help you:

  • Meet client expectations across your services, products, account management, and more
  • Introduce tailored service improvements based on customer needs
  • Introduce new products and services to meet constantly changing technology needs
  • Improve the customer experience based on feedback you cannot glean from individual ticket metrics (e.g. “I’m happy with your service, but feel my business could benefit from stronger cybersecurity.”)

So, answers to the question, “How likely are you to recommend [business name] to a friend or colleague?” can give you tons of insights that you can run with. 

Namely, you learn if your clients feel you are truly delivering a service that aligns with their original (or growing) needs.

Top Tip: We take a deep dive into how to draw meaningful conclusions from your NPS data in our guide to how to attract better customers and qualified referrals with NPS data.

How to set up your first NPS campaign

As we are an MSP feedback system, we’ll be taking you through SmileBack specifics. 

For your first NPS campaign, we recommend following best practices around developing a simple, generic NPS survey campaign. You can use the settings below as a template, and then build more sophisticated campaigns as you become more familiar with NPS as a survey tool.  

Step 1: Campaign set up

The campaign name allows you to identify and track your survey setting and results, and segment your surveys at a later date. You should always use a clear, specific, and descriptive name. 

For this survey, we’re going to use: “Quarterly NPS Survey — All Clients”.

NPS survey campaigns run on a schedule, so you need to schedule the survey based on the optimal time for the majority of your clients. You ideally want to send it during business hours and in the language in which you do business with your clients.

In the example above, we plugged in Eastern Standard Time and English. If the majority of your clients work in Germany and speak German, change those settings accordingly. 

Typical practice is to build your campaign to repeat on a set schedule, delivering your surveys at an established cadence. For a generic NPS survey, we suggest you set the survey to deploy quarterly (in other words, every three months). 

This way, similar to your QBRs, you can gauge key insights at critical reflection points. 

Even better, schedule NPS surveys to go out before your QBR, and then show up to the meeting armed with action points based on the data you’ve collated. This will help you ace your QBR by leveraging data rather than guesswork.

You can also select to re-send follow-up surveys to your clients who don’t respond. We recommend only leveraging this feature once you’ve established your NPS practice internally and your clients are accustomed to receiving and responding to NPS surveys from you.

Step 2: Design your survey email

Your NPS survey should be unique to your brand. We recommend sending the campaign from your domain instead of SmileBack’sto leverage familiarity. 

To send the surveys from your company’s own email domain, you need to set up your domain in our system. Completing this step will show the [From Name] and [From Address] as your business’s and not ours. In turn, customers will be more likely to open and respond as you are a trusted sender.

This is one of the more technical aspects of the NPS set up process, and it can sometimes take up to 15 minutes to complete (depending on the responsiveness of your DNS). You will need to have access to your company’s DNS settings to proceed. 

Top Tip: Read our help center article to learn more about setting up a custom domain for sending NPS emails.

Next, it’s time to write the subject line and body copy. Our NPS campaigns automatically include text for a standard NPS subject line and question. For both, we recommend adding a [First Name] attribute to personalize the message.

For this survey, the subject line should follow the classic NPS question: “​​How likely are you to recommend [Name]?”:

For the NPS survey question itself, we recommend also using the industry-standard copy: “How likely are you to recommend [Name] to a friend or colleague?”:

Following these standards helps you capture broad sentiment and, as this text is commonplace, makes it easier to compare your results to competitors. 

You should also customize your campaign to match your unique brand colors, and add your brand logo. Similar to sending the emails from your own domain, brand consistency can positively affect response rates:

Here’s how your branded survey will look at the end of Step 2:

We leverage an industry leading platform to test and validate our email template design across almost every email service, email client, browser, device, etc. out there. . You can trust that your email will look good and display correctly no matter what device or service your customers use. 

Top Tip: Read our help center article to learn more about creating a great NPS survey email.

Step 3: Customize the comment and thank you pages

Next, build your follow-up questions and thank you messages that go out after you receive a response. We recommend using the default text we’ve provided for simplicity. 

In the Request for Comment Message box, you should write: “Can you tell us why you chose your score?”:

And for the Thank you Message, a short and simple note will do the trick: “Thank you! We appreciate your feedback”.

People are busy, so writing long winded notes may deter them from taking the time to read and reply. When it comes to emails, shorter is always better.

In between those two notes, you have options to prompt clients to allow you to use their feedback (if it’s positive) in marketing campaigns (as testimonials) or via Google reviews

Gathering social proof can help you expand brand awareness and generate new leads, so we recommend enabling both of these options:

Once done, review the email preview to ensure it looks as intended.

Top Tip: Read our help center article to learn more about pushing positive comments to Google My Business reviews

Step 4: Import your contacts and finalize the campaign

The last step is to add your recipients to the campaign. We recommend the Import contacts method so that you can set it and forget it. 

This way, you won’t have to remember to update your contact list every time a new customer or contact comes aboard. It will save you tons of time, admin headaches, and potential missed opportunities to survey new contacts (because you forgot to add them in).

Here are specific instructions for how to import contacts by platform:

You can also upload your contacts via a .CSV need be. This is a helpful alternative if you run into potential technical issues during set up and/or inconsistencies with results.

The principles are exactly the same, you simply have two different avenues you can take to reach the same outcome.

As for selecting your filters, we recommend selecting all for each field (as is the default setting). This way, you’re ensuring you send the survey to every single contact in your system and not filtering anybody out based on specific criteria.

Eventually, once you have a baseline of statistically significant responses, you can filter by various criteria to send your campaign to segmented groups. But for your initial NPS survey, don’t worry about filtering or segmenting as the idea is to capture a broad range of responses from as many people as possible.

Finally, review your contact settings and activate your campaign:

You can change your mind on any of the above and update active NPS campaigns at any time.

Step 5: Double check the campaign set up for accuracy

It’s important to note that the survey will go out on the schedule that you set in the first step. 

You should double check the cadence, date, and timezone from your Campaigns dashboard to ensure everything is as it should be. If not, you can edit the campaign to fix any errors.

It’s important to note that responses will trickle in at different times. Some contacts might respond right away, while others will take a few days or even weeks to reply. 

You should assess your responses in real-time throughout the first week. Once you have a critical mass of data, check the results at scheduled junctures (e.g. once a day or once a week).

NPS varies from CSAT in this manner, as CSAT campaigns are always ‘on’ and results can come in throughout the day, every day. Therefore, it’s important to remember that long tail NPS results may come in periodically so you should check them to ensure you don’t miss any replies.

Once you do get results, you can start to assess your overall score and take action on the individual responses. You can read more about what the scores mean and how to reply to them in our guide to attracting better customers and qualified referrals with NPS data.

Wrapping up

NPS campaigns give you a chance to get to the heart of customer sentiment. They allow you to gauge how a client truly feels about your products or services so that you can learn from what’s going well (or not) and optimize as needed.

We recommend setting up an initial NPS campaign and setting it to run quarterly (i.e. every three months). This way, you can capture baseline sentiment early on and compare ongoing responses against this benchmark over time.

Ready to set up your first NPS campaign? Book a call with our team to get started.

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