Why In-Depth Phone Interviews Should Be Part of your CX Strategy

In-depth Phone Interviews offer tremendous value to B2B organizations that want to better understand the “why” behind the user experience.

As a one-to-one conversation with key decision-makers, In-depth Phone Interviews help you obtain richer insights into everything from key buying criteria to discovering underlying frustrations leading to customer churn. While it can be challenging to analyze, the comments you receive, and the perspectives shared can be beneficial for informing important business decisions, thereby improving the overall customer experience (CX).

If you’re not planning to incorporate this type of research into your CX research plans in the coming year, you’re missing an important learning opportunity. Here’s two key reasons why:

Looking for a refresher on IDIs? Read this helpful post: In-Depth Interviews: What B2B Leaders Need to Know.

IDI Research Benefits All Departments

There are many types of phone-based IDI research programs with each designed to meet your specific goals. Need to improve sales effectiveness? A Sales Win Loss program can be highly effective at identifying the real reasons behind a purchase decision. For example, you may want to learn more about the evaluation process your buyers go through. Therefore, understanding how your company compared to other companies under consideration would be beneficial.

Want to expand into a new market? A market research program will help you understand the competitive landscape, including what might deter them from working with a particular provider or how they evaluate success. Interviewing target customers will also be helpful to identify the challenges they are looking to solve and identify opportunities for your company to stand out.

Struggling with customer churn? A defection/churn analysis can get to the root of the issue so you can address the causes of dissatisfaction. By talking with decision-makers, you can gain clarity into why they initially selected your organization and what factors contributed to their decision to leave. You might also learn if there is an opportunity to re-engage them in the future.

No matter which type of IDI program you undertake, a skilled interviewer can uncover information that will provide value to all areas of the organization, especially to those groups who don’t regularly interact with customers. So be sure that any relevant feedback gets back to the departments who will benefit from it.

IDI Research Complements Existing CX Programs

Presumably, your organization is already gathering quantitative feedback from customers using online surveys. But supplementing this with qualitative feedback will allow for higher quality data gathering -and determining the “why” behind quantitative results. That’s because IDIs (if you’re using semi-structured or unstructured) allow a conversation to flow organically, as well as get extremely detailed on a particular topic.

Some of our clients are now adopting a mixed-method approach and include follow-up phone interviews with key customers to dive deeper into feedback. Customers appreciate the opportunity to offer greater insight (and not be constricted to a character count) into what they love about working with our clients and where opportunities for improvement exist. It’s also helpful for those customers who want to expand on a sensitive topic with greater detail.

Including IDI Research in Your CX Strategy

With so much insight to be gleaned, there is no better time to include In-Depth Interviews as part of your overall CX strategy. But a final word of caution. The key to a successful IDI program is to ask disarming, unbiased, and non-leading questions that get the interviewee to share as much detail as possible. In doing so, you’ll be able to ask additional follow-on questions to probe and dig deeper into your topics.

If you are wondering what type of IDI research endeavor would be right for your specific business goals and objectives, please drop us a note.

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