How to Build a VoC Strategy From the Ground Up



Implementing a Voice of the Customer (VoC) strategy is crucial for improving the customer experience, refining messaging, and boosting customer retention. Here are 3 key steps to build one from the ground up.

By Brittany Lieu, Marketing Consultant at Heinz Marketing

“The customer’s perception is your reality”

Your customer’s perceived value (CPV) of your brand, your products, and your offerings will always be limited by your ability to create experiences that meet their expectations. 

To make sure you not only listen for, but also process, and act on customer feedback at every customer touchpoint at scale, you need a voice of the customer (VoC) strategy. 


Voice of Customer (VoC) Strategy Explained

So, what exactly is in VoC strategy? Easily put, a VoC strategy is how you use all of your customer data, from acquisition to expansion, to tell a story about your customer experience.

An effective VoC strategy will not only help you close the loop for customer feedback but will also help you refine messaging, user experience, customer service, and overall customer retention and loyalty. 

If you have a clear understanding of your customer base, access to customer data, and commitment from your team to improve the customer experience, you may be ready to build your VoC strategy. 

Here’s how you can get started from the ground up:

  1. Identify and audit all customer touchpoints across the customer lifecycle
  2. Develop an integration plan for seamless collaboration and data flow between teams and systems
  3. Standardize how teams prioritize and implement actionable insights to close the feedback loop 

Step 1: Audit Every Customer Data Point

Begin with a comprehensive audit of all customer touchpoints throughout their journey. This will help you understand every source of customer data and how customers interact with the brand – from onboarding emails to customer support chats. 

Plan for this step to take anywhere between 3-6 weeks, depending on the size and complexity of your organization. After you compile a list of customer touchpoints you’ll need to identify what stakeholders to consult. This can include team members from marketing, product marketing, sales, customer success, and customer service. 

Once you’ve interviewed relevant team members, you should have answers to the following questions:

  • Where are our customers engaging with us the most? For example, are they providing feedback primarily through support tickets or social media?
  • What types of feedback are we currently capturing, and where are the gaps? Are we missing opportunities to collect feedback after key touchpoints like product updates or service renewals?
  • Are our current tools and technologies sufficient for capturing and analyzing customer data effectively? Consider whether your CRM system integrates seamlessly with your survey tools or if there are gaps in data collection between different departments.

Understanding and documenting every touchpoint allows your team to aggregate meaningful qualitative and quantitative data to inform your VoC strategy. 

Step 2: Map Your VoC Integration Plan

With insights from your audit, develop a clear integration plan for your VoC strategy. This plan should outline:

  • Specific jobs to be done across the customer journey
  • Teams involved at each stage
  • Success metrics to ensure seamless alignment across departments responsible for creating customer experiences and leveraging actionable insights

Here are some questions to consider at this step:

  • Which systems need to be integrated to ensure a unified view of customer feedback? Integrate your customer feedback channels with your full ecosystem of customer-led growth tools for a collective view of your customer data. 
  • How will we maintain data consistency and accuracy across different platforms? Implement data synchronization protocols to ensure that customer data is up-to-date and accessible across teams.
  • What benchmarks and metrics will define success for our integration efforts? Measure metrics such as customer satisfaction scores (CSAT) and Net Promoter Scores (NPS) to gauge the impact of your VoC strategy on user satisfaction and retention.
  • Are there dependencies or potential roadblocks that need to be addressed proactively? Identify potential risks such as system compatibility issues, data migration challenges, or resistance to change among team members, and develop mitigation strategies to minimize disruptions.
  • What is the timeline for implementing the VoC integration plan, from initial setup to full deployment? Create a detailed project timeline with milestones and deadlines for each phase of integration, accounting for testing and validation periods. Typically, implementation can take anywhere from 3-6 months. 

Once you have mapped and validated your integration mapping or the “what” and the “how,” you can define the “who.”

Step 3: Define Processes and People

To operationalize your VoC strategy, establish clear processes and assign roles within your organization. Outline how data will be collected, analyzed, and acted upon, using a RACI model to clarify responsibilities. 

Questions to ask:

  • Who will be responsible for gathering and interpreting VoC data? Empower customer success teams to collect feedback during onboarding and support interactions.
  • How will insights be prioritized and shared across teams? Conduct regular cross-functional meetings to review customer feedback and align on product enhancement priorities.
  • What mechanisms will ensure continuous improvement based on customer feedback? Implement an agile development process that incorporates user feedback into iterative product updates.

What Next?

Developing a VoC strategy is no overnight feat, but it is worth it. By laying down these foundational steps, you’re building a solid framework to truly understand and meet your customers’ needs and stay ahead of trends and competitors. These initial efforts in auditing, integrating, and defining processes are crucial for creating a customer-centric culture that drives continuous improvement.

If you’d like to chat with one of our experts about how you can plan, implement, or improve your VoC strategy, feel free to reach out!