Question

Tracking Client Sentiment Over Time Versus Point in Time

  • 19 July 2019
  • 3 replies
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  • Team Captain
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Hi there,

As part of linking timeline to the health scorecard, i'd like to get a better understanding as to why capturing the client sentiment over time (which in turn produces an average score that summarizes the overall client relationship) is a best practice instead of capturing a "point-in-time" sentiment. Is there evidence based research on the topic of Customer Sentiment Analysis that either argues for or against a point in time metric.

Thank you in advance,

Jasmine


3 replies

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Hi Jasmine, I see value in both metrics. For example, the point in time is super critical if you are coming to a decision point in the relationship (like a renewal), as humans aren't super rational and tend to make decisions based on how they feel in the moment instead of the average of how they felt over a long period of time. So a poor "now" sentiment will have a more powerful negative influence on a renewal likelihood than will a postitive "average" sentiment.

The value in knowing the trend over time is useful when seeing the relationship as a whole. You'd certainly manage a client account differently if they were a long healthy customer who only recently dipped into the red vs a customer who has struggled with poor sentiment over a longer period of time.

Trends over time are often useful for execs or other members who may be called in to help on a specific project or escalation and aren't intimately familiar with the overall customer relationship. Seeing the history of successes or struggles is helpful in crafting the strategy of how to work with that customer.

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Hi Dan,

Thank you for following up with me on this in helping me understand the differences in those types of metrics and the insight the organization can receive to make decisions. One of my concerns is the frequency in which the CSM team updates the "point-in-time" measure in the scorecard and determining the weighting percentage between the "Average over time" versus "point in time". I feel that the more automation the CSM team has the less of a barrier it is for them to adopt GS.

What would be considered best practice in determining to incorporate average over time or point in time? Do we include both in the scorecard and weigh them differently?

Thanks,

Jasmine

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Hi Jasmine,

When it comes to subjective measures like sentiment, it's hard to say that there's a "one size fits all" approach. A lot can vary based on the CSM ratios, how frequently they interact with your customers, the extent of competitive threats to your product/service, the overall perceived customer effort with your product/service, etc.

As you correctly noted, the frequency of the update can play a big factor, as older sentiment scores are less likely to be an accurate predictor of current sentiment, even if they are useful for understanding history.

This topic is one that's probably good to discuss with your Gainsight CSM during your next cadence call as they can help you go deep and with knowledge of your specific business needs.

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