Net Promoter Score

The Net Promoter Score (NPS), developed by Frederick Reichheld and Bain & Company in 2002, is a simple metric that helps organizations monitor the engagement of their customers. It reflects the likelihood that customers will recommend a product/company/place to friends, family or colleagues.

In the context of the tourism industry, NPS is based on responses to the question, “How likely are you to recommend [British Columbia] as a travel destination to a friend, family member or colleague?” Responses are scored from 0 = “not at all likely” to 10 = “extremely likely”. Respondents are divided into three categories:
  • Detractors (scores of 0 to 6):  Unhappy visitors, unlikely to tell others to visit and might even damage the reputation of a destination through negative word of mouth.
  • Passives (scores of 7 or 8): Marginally satisfied visitors not excited enough to tell others about their travel experience.
  • Promoters (scores of 9 or 10): Loyal enthusiasts likely to return and rave about their travel experience.

NPS is calculated by subtracting the percentage of detractors from the percentage of promoters.




The intention to recommend a travel destination, reported by the NPS, is a proxy measure of overall satisfaction with the travel experience. Satisfaction with the travel experience and the intention to recommend greatly increase the likelihood of a return visit to British Columbia.  And word of mouth advocacy, either face-to-face or through social media, is critical for attracting first time visitors to British Columbia.

NPS is regarded by researchers as the question that best predicts the future growth of customer centric businesses like the tourism industry.  Many tourism businesses and destination management organizations, including the Canadian Tourism Commission, are also measuring NPS to help monitor and measure efforts to improve customer loyalty.

The original research that developed NPS is described in an article by Frederick F. Reichheld in the Harvard Business Review:

Introduction to the Net Promoter Score®

The Introduction to the NPS is a document that have been created to provide an introduction to what NPS is and how it is currently being used in the tourism industry.

How to Measure Net Promoter Score®  in British Columbia Communities

A summary of How to Measure Net Promoter Score® in British Columbia Communities provides an overview of the details to consider at project initiation, how to determine the best visitor intercept methodology, discusses survey administrative tools, questionnaire development and how to complete the NPS calculation and recommended data analysis.

[1] Net Promoter® and NPS® are registered trademarks and Net Promoter Score and Net Promoter System are trademarks of Bain & Company, Satmetrix Systems and Fred Reichheld.