About 18 months ago we implemented a rigorous customer feedback program for one of our clients. This is a support desk for an enterprise software company, so the client is dealing with frustrated customers who spend a lot of money.
Before our arrival, the client's feedback program was very primitive. They used SurveyMonkey to send surveys to customers after a trouble ticket was closed (if someone remembered), and had a poor response rate with feedback that wasn't very actionable.
We redesigned the process to use an immediate phone interview, integrated into the ticketing system on Salesforce.com. Our interviewers asked about several elements of the support process, with a lot of follow-up questions. We evolved the survey questions as we learned more about the customers' hot-button issues and helped the client narrow down on the root causes of customer complaints.
Just as important, we deliver the feedback directly to the support team in real-time, so they will see a customer's feedback in as little as a few minutes after closing the ticket. They can listen to the interview recording, analyze their statistics by product, problem type, and other data from Salesforce.
Based on the customer feedback the client made some process changes, and also used the data to hold one of its business partners accountable for some of the partner's problems which were showing up in the feedback.
We know all this is working, as the client's survey scores are improving (and their business is growing). But it was especially gratifying when one of the customers made a point of telling our interviewer yesterday that he noticed that the service has "improved a lot," the support engineer was "phenomenal," and that he has noticed a clear change over the past several incidents.
Customers do notice when things improve.