What is “The Iceberg Theory of User Feedback” and why it is so important to know ?

Direct feedback via social media, is a common phenomenon. It is not just possible, but companies actively encourage it. You may satisfy the loud complaints of your customers who’ve gotten your attention, but have you ever thought about the quiet ones?

What is “The Iceberg Theory of User Feedback” and why it is so important to know ?

There is abundant valuable feedback about your product and your business hidden beneath the surface ahead of your eyes. Above the water sits the straightforwardly visible feedback: metrics you’re collecting in analytics tools, customer complaints, angry social media rants and hopefully a couple of vocal evangelists. Often, this vocal and visual group is that the squeaky wheel that gets the grease and gratitude and drives change. The matter is that this sort of feedback is just the foremost accessible instead of representing the truth of how people feel about your product.


Two kinds of feedback tend to rise to the surface most prominently feedback on your product’s most well-defined problems and its well-defined, helpful solutions:

Well-defined problems form with a critical mass of specific and clear feedback, gleaming their light on the next steps for the product. Well-defined solutions attract customers and feed word-of-mouth. They ought to be easily identifiable as the active heart of your products. You’ve made something of particular value that folks pay you with time, money, and spotlight.

But what about everything below the surface all the small problems that folks forget to voice or don’t even bother to complain that but drive them insane?


Think about your own experiences

You come for one feature so you can handle your few things. Instead, you exist because the experience is fraught with annoyances slow page load times, confusing navigation, a wonky feature, bad help documentation, or slow response times from support.

You’re probably hearing from just a sliver of your overall customers. Per statistics, only 4% of unsatisfied customers voice complaints. You would possibly not be heading into the frigid waters to seem at what’s underneath the apparent surfaces. Sometimes what you excavate won’t amount to much, but sometimes the feedback can crystallize, with some effort and dot-connecting, into some “Aha” moments for you.


Silence isn’t always good

Minor annoyances usually don’t spark angry emails, but that doesn’t mean they hurt your product any less. you'll satisfy the loud complainers who’ve gotten your attention, but the quiet ones could also be battling diminishing patience.

Check-in alongside your customers and open up opportunities to possess a helpful conversation. Unless you’re just starting out with a product, you almost certainly don’t have the resources to coordinate and schedule check-ins with every single customer. Instead, answer behaviour and signals of intent.


Talk to your customers

Automate an easy automated email to succeed in out supported behavioural signals like inactivity trends, lack of communication etc. as an example, you'll trigger an email to users who haven’t logged during every week or 2 or have viewed your support documentation X number of times within 2 days after already having been onboarded.

If you’re tracking support requests you'll create an automatic email campaign for whoever hasn’t contacted support in awhile.


Find Bad within the Good

It feels specialized to urge an email from a cheerful customer. In Customer.io’s case, there’s nothing that creates us happier than hearing a few customers whose behavioural emails cut churn, drove adoption of a replacement feature, and helped their customers.

But simply because a customer features a success story doesn’t mean there isn’t constructive feedback to be had. These are the folks that got results and if you're employed in SaaS you recognize that getting people from a non-customer to customer to successful customer is hard.

So, here’s what we recommend. Ask if you'll write a case study about them, then schedule a brief interview to understand about their success story. They get featured on your site, and you get a glowing review of your product.


Think Bigger—Way Bigger

It’s easy to know how problems may lie below the surface in any situation, but that’s really just the start. Consider another sort of iceberg model. Imagine that the lowest of an iceberg the part you cannot see is also its foundation. The bottom directly influences what you see at the highest.

Changing the models, systems, and patterns that influence your employees and customers isn’t easy, but it's the sole way to make structural changes that naturally end in a far better company and product.