Turning Detractors into Promoters: A NPS Case Study in the Food & Beverage Category

Turning Detractors into Promoters: A NPS Case Study in the Food & Beverage Category

by Rose Lugo

Word-of-mouth recommendations are powerful, consumers trust their peers over any type of advertising . Hence, marketers cannot afford to ignore the effect of word-of-mouth in their brands’ equity. The Net Promoter Score, NPS, can be helpful in determining whether consumers are likely to talk a brand up or down. NPS is instrumental in assessing the health of a brand, and it is a useful predictor of growth.


NPS: The Basics

For those unfamiliar with how NPS works, here is a rundown. In essence, NPS is a measurement of how likely a consumer is to recommend a brand to others. NPS is widely accepted globally as a reliable metric of customer satisfaction. The Net Promoter Score is the registered trademark of Fred Reichheld, Bain & Company, and Satmetrix—the parties responsible for the initial study that produced the NPS formula and tested its reliability, back in 2003.

A brand’s NPS is calculated by taking the percentage of customers who are Promoters—fans of the band—and subtracting the percentage who are Detractors—consumers not willing to recommend the brand. This is calculated based on consumers’ response to the simple question: "How likely are you to recommend this brand?" Responses are measured on a scale of 0-10.

Consumers are overloaded with choices at the shelves and online. Leading marketers know that brand ambassadors are capable of both moving the sales needle within a quarter and at the same time building brand equity for the long-run, which is why Promoters are so important for a brand.

Brands in the food and beverage industry, for example, need to stand out in one of the most crowed FMCG categories. Let’s take a closer look at how a brand ambassador activation can turn the NPS around.


Case Study: NPS Food & Beverage Category

An activation for a breakfast cereal brand exemplifies how The Insiders are able turn brand Detractors and Passives into Promoters, growing a brand’s NPS. The cereal brand’s main goal was precisely to generate ambassadors, for that end we activated 700 Insiders, everyday consumers who are members of our community. Targeted consumers had to be active on social media and have children in the home.

Recruited Insiders embarked on an 6-week journey to discover the benefits of the brand and share their opinions with family, friends, and colleagues. They were encouraged in one-on-one interactions with campaign managers to create authentic content about their brand experiences for their own social media platforms. Insiders also provided their honest reviews about the product.


NPS Results

133-percentage point jump in NPS. The activation resulted in a 133-percentage point jump in NPS, the brand’s NPS increased from -58 to 75. Detractors before the activation accounted for 74% of consumers, this number went down to only 6% afterwards, a decrease of 68 percentage points. On the other hand, Promoters that were only 16% of consumers jumped to 81%, a 65-percentage points increase.

It is important for brands to also collect qualitative input on why consumers are willing to promote a brand. Insiders’ recommendations signal to some of the reasons for the success of the program.


Insider: Coisasdaney - Post on Instagram to 1108 followers:

“Have you tried this delicious new cereal? It’s the <> honey-flavored morning cereal. It brings a combination of flavor and nutrition as it includes 4 types of grains, oats, corn, wheat and rice. And the delicious taste of honey, Hmmmm. I have it with milk, yogurt, fruit and dry, because it is delicious on its own. I definitely recommend it. [heart emoji]”


Insider Casa61b – Post on Instagram to 2,520 followers

“This is breakfast today. I almost forgot to post it.. I can only set a pretty table for breakfast on my days off, really [sweaty face emoji]

It is not every day that we get free stuff around here, so when we do I want to make a beautiful post, right? [Instagram logo emoji, smiley face emoji] I shared a few weeks ago in my stories that I received it to try from The Insiders. They sent me a box of <> and several cute samples to share with friends and family. Now I can tell you that everybody loved it.. those who like honey overindulged on it. My husband loves morning cereals, he almost ate the whole box hahahahah

This morning cereal is new here, but it has been popular in other countries for over 70 years [smiley face emoji] #CampaignHashtag”


This case study attests to the effectiveness of The Insiders in turning brand Detractors and Passives into Promoters, boosting the brands’ Net Promoter Scores. Based on The Insiders’ practice, three key factors that drive NPS for client brands are:

1) Personalized consumer education about brand benefits.

2) Intensive one-on-one consumer engagement to identify and break purchase barriers.

3) Consumer empowerment to articulate brand benefits to peers during face-to-face and online interactions—using their own authentic and trusted voices.

What is your brand’s NPS? If it’s below category average, activating brand ambassadors will help. Those with NPS on or above average have the opportunity of nuturing ambassadors to move sales. Either way, NPS is an invaluable benchmark of how well a brand is doing overall.

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