Q: This is Forrester’s first update of the Wave since 2011. How do you think the customer feedback management (CFM) market has changed since then?
Borge: Since Forrester’s last Wave in 2011, we have seen dramatically increased interest from the C-suite. Not only is customer experience excellence the way to sustained differentiation, but executives recognize that in order to create a customer centric culture, they need to personally engage with customer feedback. If you had asked me back then how many CEOs regularly look at customer feedback, I would have said it was very few. Now we have a mobile app that is specifically designed for busy execs to quickly get a daily dose of feedback. Overall, daily user engagement rates with Medallia’s mobile apps lie somewhere between the levels of Facebook and Twitter.
Also, as Forrester notes, the market is coalescing around platforms that provide all key capabilities necessary to understand and act on customer feedback. When we founded Medallia, we had a metaphor that we liked to use – we were building a customer experience central nervous system for the largest companies in the world. Our solution would take in all kinds of input, customer feedback and operational data, quickly assimilate and analyze in real-time, and drive quick tactical and longer term strategic actions; and it would do this throughout the entire organization. When you use a metaphor like that to drive your product vision, you build something very different than if you think of yourself as a provider of surveys or ad hoc research.
Q: Forrester recognized Medallia for your programmatic approach to CFM at scale. Can you describe why that appeals to clients?
Amy: We help companies engage their entire organization in improving the customer experience – so we are thrilled that Forrester recognized us for how we distribute data widely to both frontline employees and execs. This transparency of customer experience insights and actions across levels and functions in an organization is critical to success in providing better experiences to customers.
For example, Borge recently visited a retail store of one of our clients to hear the associates talk about how they use Medallia. The associates spoke of the importance of getting personalized feedback about how they can improve, directly from the customer’s point of view, as well as how motivating it is because there are lots of great comments too. In another example, the head of Mercedes Benz USA spoke at our conference last year about how employees at their hundreds of dealerships are able to use Medallia’s mobile app to immediately engage with customers who have had an issue – solving problems quickly and exemplifying the high-touch customer relationship the brand prides itself on.
Building a platform that provides this transparency is what we had in mind when we founded Medallia, so this recognition validates the approach we have always believed in — widespread, front-line to C-suite engagement.
Q: What are your thoughts on Medallia’s placement?
Borge: We are obviously excited to be named a Leader, and particularly pleased to have received the top ranking for our current offering. Our early product vision has helped to shape this space, which is why we have such a well-rounded platform today, with strong capabilities across all critical aspects of a CFM solution. Companies are dealing with a lot of disparate systems and they are looking for a partner that can bring these key capabilities together while providing a great user experience. We have been constantly investing in all areas of our platform, including a recent complete refresh of the user interface, which is why Forrester noted that our well-integrated interface stood out in the evaluation.
Also, we got recognized for our substantial capabilities to collect feedback across digital channels and mobile apps with our launch of Medallia Digital last year. This digital offering is best in class – we are seeing tremendous traction in the market already, with both new customers and current clients who are looking to bring these channels onto their existing Medallia platform. It’s great to have not only the market validation of this investment, but also that of the industry analysts.
Finally, we received among the highest scores possible in market presence and product vision/roadmap. Not only does this validate that our top-ranked current offering appeals broadly to the market, but this evaluation of our roadmap is a testament to the fact that our future direction is well aligned with where Forrester thinks this space is headed. Furthermore, Forrester’s assessment is based on an evaluation of our product several months ago in December. Since then, we’ve added a lot of capabilities, especially in the area of self service, with more on the way.
Q: Any final thoughts?
Amy: Our mission is to create a world where companies are loved by their customers and employees. We’d like to thank our customers who believe in our mission and are partnering with us to make it a reality. Our business is helping companies create promoters and nothing is more rewarding and humbling than having so many customers who are promoters of Medallia. To those customers who provided references for this evaluation, we are immensely grateful for your efforts on our behalf.
We are excited to meet everyone next week in Las Vegas at the Experience conference so that we can celebrate together. If you’d like to read the 2017 Forrester Wave report for yourself, you can download the report for free here.