What is Net Promoter Score?

sis approach to net promoter score

What It Is

The “Net Promoter Score” (NPS) helps to determine how loyal customers really are to any particular business. There is an NPS spectrum that answers the question, How likely is it that you would recommend a certain brand to a friend or colleague? The range runs from 0, in which a consumer is not at all likely to recommend a brand, to 10, where that consumer is extremely like to do so. The NPS is calculated by subtracting the percentage of low-end scoring consumers (detractors) from the high-end scoring consumers (promoters).

When to Use It

When a business wants to get at a clear measure of its performance through its customers’ eyes, it uses an NPS to determine whether it is a sustained value creator and to gauge the efficiency of the company’s growth engine, because the net score of promoters will show how long-term the company can become.

NPS is a radical change from some complex customer satisfaction surveys.  The NPS metric is powerful.  Companies can use the NPS instead to measure customer relationships as rigorously as they now measure profits over periods of time. The NPS can clarify the link between the quality of a company’s customer relationships and a company’s prospects for future growth.

How it Works

The elegant simplicity of this method, based on the single question:

How likely is it that you will recommend this brand or product?

This method analyzes the customer base into three categories: Promoters, Passives, and Detractors. Naturally, you want as many promoters and as few detractors as possible. Nothing much can be done about the Passives, but learning about the sources of their dissatisfaction in other survey questions.

Net Promoter Score Market Research

Case Studies

As the Harvard Business Review reported, companies like Philips have used an NPS in order to “to try to become an outside-in, customer-focused organization.” The NPS has “deepened our focus on organizing ourselves around the needs and expectations of our markets.” Other brands that have used an NPS include Delta Airlines, Dupont, Neiman Marcus, PayPal, Comcast, Medtronic, and many more.

Impact on Business Decisions

The main advantage of the NPS is that it allows companies to think about metrics that come from its own customers. Of course, revenue is the ultimate metric, but revenue is a lagging indicator and not necessarily a good one when it comes to forecasting future growth. You cannot do anything about last quarter’s results. With an NPS in place, a business might be able to improve next quarter’s revenue and, in the process, make its customer base happier and more loyal to the brand.