News | April 21, 2011

Ping Pong Finds Recipe For Customer Advocacy

Ping Pong, a chain of Dim Sum restaurants, is focusing on delivering an exceptional customer experience and developing staff morale by employing a customer experience management (CEM) programme from Empathica, the UK's leading CEM agency within the hospitality and retail sectors. The programme will enable the restaurant chain to gain feedback from hundreds of customers each month across its restaurants in the UK, US and Middle East.

Hilary Culkin, HR Director at Ping Pong, said, "Last year we held focus groups about our business, our service and quality. The feedback revealed that our overall service was good but inconsistent. We wanted to address this and selected Empathica due to the company's expertise in providing CEM programmes in the hospitality sector. This is allowing us to get a true picture of our customers' expectations."

Ping Pong is also using the programme to incentivise its staff to provide an excellent service. Culkin said, "We've introduced a customer ‘WOW' incentive programme for our staff. A customer WOW is an initiative whereby customers who complete our surveys can recognise individual members of staff that went above and beyond their expectations to enhance their experience. It is not only hugely motivating for the team in itself but also the restaurant which gets the most customer WOWs relative to the number of responses in a week will get £100 incentive towards their own staff party. The area managers are using the insights from Empathica to help build a true picture of the service we're providing. In addition, we're looking at using the information provided to aid the marketing department in how it develops its future customer campaigns."

Culkin said, "The GoRecommend application perfectly supports our strategy. Empathica is an expert at mobilising customer advocacy and its GoRecommend tool enables customers to share brand recommendations across their social networks on Facebook and Twitter. On average, a Ping Pong Facebook user has 350 friends, almost three times more than the average Facebook user. The statistics so far are very powerful; despite having just 12 restaurants, Ping Pong customers have already shared their experiences with over 10,000 friends in less than two months."

Steve Raher, Business Development Director at Empathica, said, "Ping Pong is a great brand and we are very confident that the programme, together with our unrivalled experience in the hospitality sector, will help drive excellent customer experience in each of their restaurants. They appreciate that robust credible feedback from real customers provides much more powerful insights, focus on the right areas for improvement, and way to engage staff than mystery shopping. An additional benefit is harnessing the power of social media through our innovative GoRecommend application. Ping Pong already has many brand advocates, and the number will surely continue to grow."

About Ping Pong:
The Ping Pong restaurant chain is a modern take on an ancient Chinese tradition with brilliant cocktails and gorgeous flowering teas. Hundreds of years ago, merchants on the Silk Road would stop at tea houses en route to rest their weary feet, relax and drink tea with their fellow travellers and share Dim Sum – baskets and dishes of little sweet and savoury snacks, usually steamed, baked or fried. Ping Pong has kept all the best bits of that ancient tradition, like meeting to relax and share appetising food and fragrant tea.

Dim Sum is served quickly and it's easy to eat, but it definitely isn't fast food. Everything on Ping Pong's menu is handmade from fresh ingredients every day by the company's specialist Dim Sum chefs.

For more information, visit

About Empathica
Empathica provides Customer Experience Management programmes to over 200 of the world's leading brands, ranging from multi-unit retailers, to restaurants and banks. Its rich analysis of survey data using state-of-the-art surveying and dashboard reporting software allows for performance-improvement solutions, evidence-based marketing insights, and customer experience management consulting. Annually, Empathica's 30 million customer surveys in 25 languages reach more than 70,000 locations. A privately-held organisation, Empathica is headquartered in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada and also has offices in Birmingham, England and Alpharetta, GA, in the United States. For more information, visit

SOURCE: Empathica