The Lowly Forgotten Neutral Score #MRX

If you’re a brand manager, you desperately want to know how many people love your brand.  Do 5% of people love it or do 45% of people love it? Top 2 Box scores help you track that number and evaluate improvements over time. They tell you which features or aspects of your brand people like.neutral answer

Similarly, Bottom 2 Box scores are essential measures as well. How many people hate your brand? Do they hate the red one or the blue one? The hope is that B2B scores decrease over time thereby indicated that any changes made to a product served to convert haters into lovers.

So what’s the point in measuring neutrals? Is it important if 40% or 60% of people couldn’t care less about your brand? Should we care if they walk past your retail store and pay no mind to the beautiful display in the window? That they flip the newspaper pages without paying attention to the  50% off coupon taking up half the page? That they choose a competitive brand over yours because the store was 20 feet closer? I think the answer is obvious.

Complacency matters. Complacency is not hate, nor is it love. Complacent consumers are imminent switchers. They are on the cusp of discovering and falling in love with a competing brand because you don’t care about them. Other complacent consumers are imminent loyals. They are ripe to become massive fans sharing your social media links with all of their friends and followers if only you would give them the reason why.

So don’t brush aside the Neutrals in favour of Top 2 and Bottom 2 Box scores. Unless you don’t care. Or whatever. Cause I don’t care. Anyways.

4 responses

  1. Great points, Annie!

    Given that attracting new customers is more expensive than keeping current customers. You point out a “hidden” nugget of ROI. Learning how to convert a neutral into a positive/promoter/loyal fan (pick your terminology of choice) should generally be less expensive than attracting and convincing an entirely new customer.

    Reaching out to the neutrals with more targeted efforts could also pay dividends in determining what the factors are that inhibit higher scores (satisfaction, etc.). Even if you can’t convince them to become loyal followers, you might be able to help them switch without thinking your brand stinks…at least that way they won’t be detractors.

  2. As Oscar Wilde said, “The only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about.”

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