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The Game of Telephone: The Case For Recorded Mystery Shops

Traditional mystery shopping took a twist when recorded evaluations were introduced, both video & audio. When they first emerged, they were useful for several reasons, some of which include the increased accuracy of reporting and ability to use the recordings for training purposes.

As this type of evaluation took shape, a new use emerged for B2B companies and those with more complex business services. 

Remember the game of telephone, where someone starts by whispering a message in a person’s ear, and that person shares the message with the next person, and so on, until it gets to the last person in the chain? When the last person shares the message, it is often very different from the original message.

On a similar note, have you ever said or emailed something that was not taken as you intended?

This is where recorded evaluations come into play – to ensure messaging and information shared with prospective customers is clear, accurate, and taken as intended.

Let’s face it – you know your industry, products, and services like the back of your hand. Sometimes explaining them using jargon or terms that are every day use for you may not be clear to others. While some may understand, others may not and make their own interpretations. Or it could be something as simple as a prospective customer coming from a different perspective, taking a response to their question differently than you intended.

Benefits of Recorded Evaluations

A company that uses recorded evaluations shared this type of experience. Their business is a financial lending institution. There are a lot of regulations and information around the services they offer, so it is vital that they are not only sharing the right information, but making sure prospective clients understand what is being said.

During a recent evaluation, a shopper was instructed to ask a series of questions to better understand the company’s services. In the narrative detail, the shopper described the sales representative’s response to two specific questions. The client then listened to the recording of the interaction, because the way the shopper described the response was not quite what the sales representative said, but after listening, it was better understood how the shopper could interpret the response in the way he did.

This led the company to revisit how they explain certain aspects of their services; they realized, in reading the shopper’s interpretation of the response and comparing it to the conversation that they were not conveying the information in a way to make it clear and understood as it needed to be.

What’s important to note is that neither side did anything “wrong” – the sales representative did not provide incorrect information, and the shopper did not report the details of the interaction incorrectly; instead, it was a case of information being explained from one perspective and understood from a similar, yet slightly different perspective.

Recorded evaluations were extremely useful in this case for the company to listen to with a critical ear and compare to how the recipient interpreted the responses. Over time they were able to identify areas of messaging that needed to be updated to make their presentation and explanations better.

This is just another use case for recorded evaluations. They can be used for simple operational evaluations but enhanced by including components to evaluate messaging, communication, and improving the potential customer sales cycle. Just something to consider when your company is looking to evaluate the customer experience through mystery shopping services.

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