What is Net Promoter System℠ and how does it work?

The link between customer loyalty and true, sustainable, organic growth is well established, and provides companies with powerful, measurable financial incentives to install Net Promoter System℠. But unlike financial accounting rules that tempt companies to chase short-term profits at the expense of customer loyalty, Net Promoter System℠ requires—and inspires—an entire organization to do right by its customers and employees. It is the business equivalent of the Golden Rule: treat others as you yourself would want to be treated.

Judging from the "core value" statements in most annual reports, the vast majority of business leaders want their company to grow by enriching the lives of their customers and employees.

Net Promoter System℠ is a practical framework for doing exactly that. Here’s how it works:

Net Promoter System℠ requires that your organization and its senior management commit to:

1. sorting customers (and employees) into promoters, passives and detractors

2. creating short-cycle closed-loop feedback, learning, recovery and action processes

3. making it a top priority to earn the enthusiastic loyalty of customers (and employees)


The system itself comprises eight essential processes:


1. Reliable metric

High quality processes for sorting customers into promoters, passives and detractors, and for gaining an understanding of competitive position.

2. Loyalty economics

The calculations and analysis that provide a true understanding of the costs and benefits of investing in different segments of your customer base to earn more of their loyalty.

3. Root cause

The process of mining customer feedback and other sources of data and analysis for deeper insights into what you can do to create more promoters and fewer detractors.

4. Closed loop

One of the most important elements of a meaningful Net Promoter system, closing the loop means immediately sharing customer feedback with employees, and responding directly to individual customers to take action on their concerns (and delights).

5. Learning

Short-cycle closed-loop feedback gives employees throughout the organization the opportunity to understand the impact of their actions on customers, which can enable faster learning. But learning requires more than feedback. It also demands deliberate processes to help employees experiment and get the sort of coaching they need.

6. Action

Beyond just collecting feedback, calculating scores and learning, Net Promoter companies actively seek ways to change day-to-day behavior throughout the organization. They have a bias toward action.

7. Robust operational infrastructure

Supporting a high-quality closed-loop system and actions requires designing robust processes, policies and information flows. Net Promoter requires operational support so that it becomes part of the everyday work of the company, not just research.

8. Leadership and communication

Net Promoter companies require leaders who instill values in the organization and reinforce them through their actions, decisions and words. They demonstrate their own commitment to earning customer and employee loyalty, and demand it of others.

Ongoing results

High-quality Net Promoter Systems create a virtuous cycle that allows you to earn more profit per customer, and to outperform your competitors by investing in the right customers and the right products or services to delight them.