360 Degree Performance Reviews are a common exercise to evaluate employees. It allows supervisors to get a better understanding of how an employee is performing based on several different perspectives. You can do the same with your company by using this modified approach.
1. Write a list of the reasons why you think customers buy your product or service.
2. Create a survey for your customers and include the question: Why did you choose to buy from our company? There are many ways that you can do this. You can do a simple paper-based Customer Satisfaction Form and make them available in your store. You could also use an online service like SurveyMonkey or Constant Contact.
3. Contact your trusted vendors or partners that are essential to your business and ask them why they would recommend people to buy from your company. Use whichever format would work best based on your relationship. Maybe it’s a phone call or an email or over lunch.
4. Compile all the information you collected and organize in the following groupings. Each group provides interesting insights to inform how you can better represent your company.
Answers noted by:
Only YOU: You may have thought you were doing well in these areas, but perhaps you’re not. Consider either working to improve or discontinue using these points to sell your company and focus on other strengths.
Only CUSTOMERS: These are interesting insights that you may have overlooked. Do further investigation on why customers care about these points.
Only VENDORS: Consider testing if using these points in your marketing communications have an impact on customers.
Both YOU and your CUSTOMERS: These are points where your customer experience is aligned with your product. However, your vendors/partners may not be experiencing that same level. Strive to integrate these points into your backend processes.
Both YOU and your VENDORS: You and your vendors may be viewing these points from a very insular point of view. Work on integrating these points into your customer experience.
BOTH your CUSTOMERS and your VENDORS: Pay careful attention to these points. These strengths may be competitive advantages you weren’t aware of. Consider adding to your marketing communications.
ALL THREE: These are your core strengths. You should consistently communicate these in all of your marketing efforts.