NPS for B2B Continued – Making it Work

February 25, 2011 at 9:49 AM 2 comments

Last week I posed the question – can Business-to-Business companies use NPS to understand who their advocates are, and how to build customer advocacy?

Yes, you can – but not just by throwing the NPS question at your main contact in the organization. B2B sales are too complex for that. Suppose you’re selling medical equipment. The Chief Resident might recommend you. The medical technician using the equipment has reservations. The person in medical records is totally on board. The budget director not so much.

That could be four (or more) conflicting NPS numbers to deal with. What’s the answer?

Here’s what works – you need to embed the NPS in a thorough exploration of the whole multifaceted customer experience. That means surveying all the people you touch, and asking them all the NPS question. You also ask them why they would or would not recommend you, and get a good picture of their experience.

Then, look at your data and correlate each department’s NPS with the aspects of their particular experience that drive the advocacy or detraction. Maybe you’re good at understanding the overall business, so management recommends you, but you’re not quick enough solving the engineer’s problems. Once you know who all your advocates and detractors in an organization are, you can use NPS just the way BtoC companies do – start changing the behavior of your company to bring about better experiences for all the people you touch.


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NPS – Does it work for B2B? Dilbert on Innovaton

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Wouter Wijma  |  March 2, 2011 at 1:49 PM

    NPS IN B2B

    We are almost only working for B2B clients. We manage it a little bit different. We indicate the people within the clients oraganisation as Deceision maker, Influencer or user. In this case you are able to see in one graph who are in the organsiation your (Super)promoters, passives and detractors. We even give total NPS score of the organisation.

    Wouter Wijma
    Certified Net Promoter Associate, the Nerherlands

  • 2. Thompson  |  March 3, 2011 at 3:28 PM

    Wouter – Great approach! By segmenting this by relationship role, you certainly gain significant insight. In addition, we feel it’s important to understand the reasons behind why someone is a promoter or detractor.

    For this, you need to evaluate the entire experience in relation to the score. We do this by utilizing a type of regression analysis to understand te correlation between promoters, passives and detractors and the different aspects of their experience. That lets us identify what we call the NPS drivers.

    Thanks for contributing to this discussion. More on this later…



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Thompson Morrison

Thompson Morrison

About Thompson

As CEO of FUSE Insight, Thompson Morrison uses powerful new web interviewing technologies to help businesses better align their brand with the needs and aspirations of their customers. Learn more at


"The single most significant strategic strength that an organization can have is not a good strategic plan, but a commitment to strategic listening on the part of every member of the organization." -- Tom Peters



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