#BetterAlternatives: help us highlight the value of community businesses this autumn

by Sonja Wiencke

by Twine

8th October 2018

This autumn, we’re on a mission to get all Twine users to measure their customer satisfaction. Doing so will give you better idea of what people in your community like and dislike, so you can do more of the former and less of the latter. But, it will also help us make the case for why community businesses are such exciting alternatives to traditional business models.  

You may have read the recent ‘Alternatives’ series in The Guardian by Aditya Chakraborty.

It showcased how community businesses and similar organisations allow local people to run services by and for the community: from housing to food production, local people are taking matters into their own hands and are filling gaps left by the private and public sector.

We think community businesses are not only filling these gaps, but they probably also provide better services. 

The Twine team is fortunate enough to visit many community businesses, and every visit gives us reason to suspect that community businesses are simply better at listening to their communities and satisfying their customers than any bigger organisation could ever be. We think they truly are #BetterAlternatives!

Now we want to prove that! We want the community business sector to be recognised for the great work it is doing, so that the doors to resources (i.e. funders) and power (i.e. public authorities) open a bit wider for them.

Hence, we are inviting all Twine users to be part of our #BetterAlternatives campaign this autumn and run the Net Promoter Score customer satisfaction survey.

You can read more about NPS score here, but the basic idea is to ask people how likely they are to recommend your business to a friend or family member.

Respondents will score how likely they are to recommend you on a scale from 0 to 10. Clever marketing people have built a little model that will allow you to evaluate your results afterwards:

  • Respondents who score 6 or lower are called “detractors” – customers who may say bad things about your business.
  • Respondents who answer 7 or 8 are called “passives” - customers who probably won’t talk about your business at all.
  • Respondents who score 9 or 10 are the “promoters” - customers willing to say good things about your business, who may turn into advocates for you.

The Net Promoter Score is then calculated by subtracting the detractors from the promoters, so it gives you a single number that you can easily compare across different businesses or sectors.

We can then use these scores to try and prove how community businesses outperform traditional forms of business – how they are #BetterAlternatives. We will do that by comparing the Net Promoter Scores collected through Twine to industry benchmarks.

We’ll not only use this to help us make the case for community business, but it will also provide your business with useful data to inform future planning. We hope the responses give you plenty of interesting things to try out.

Of course, this does in no way provide the whole picture for how community businesses deliver value, or are #BetterAlternatives. We'll work together over the next few months to complete that picture, let's start with this piece!

So, what to do now?

If you already are a Twine user, log in at the top of this page and just set up the survey. We’ll be sending tips by email, look out for those. There are cool things to win as well!

If you are not a Twine subscriber yet, send us an email (powertochangetwine@gmail.com) and we’ll see how we can help you!

And of course, we are participating as well.

If you want to give the Twine team some feedback on how satisfied you are with us, please text “feedback” to 07520619084, and you will receive the same Net Promoter Score survey that we’re asking you to run with your community.

We are looking forward to reading your responses!