What's the difference?

Common Questions Answered

The Pulse of the City News Customer Satisfaction Award was established to spotlight building and construction companies providing a top-level customer experience to their customers. We expanded our research to include Real Estate, Home Services, and Property Management in early 2014.  Our research is done annually. Companies and Professionals earning a 4 to 5-star rating are honored with the award and receive a unique Star Page on our website. 

You are known in your field for excellent customer care. Customers and other industry members post comments and feedback online and make their opinions known in other channels, including our nomination process. Our research team collects those comments and ratings, and reviews a host of online and other sources including blogs, review websites, social networks, and rating services. Additionally, we take into consideration ease of use and user experience when interacting with the business under review. The data is then analyzed to determine a company’s star rating.

Our database of performance information has been compiled on an ongoing basis since 2009, so it is more than a snapshot of “what did they do last?” Our process is designed to separate the reality from the smoke and noise to which many other rating systems succumb.

No. There is no fee to be rated. And paying us money does not buy you a higher rating. We publish the award status on a unique Star Page on our website at no charge for all companies earning the highest possible ratings of 4 to 5 stars. Our ratings cannot be bought — they must be earned in the marketplace by providing superior customer service as identified by our independent research. 

We like excellence, especially in customer service. Showcasing companies that excel will only raise the industry level of customer experience awareness and satisfaction. That’s a good thing. We don’t need to be paid for that good thing. If our rating result was influenced by payment, it would lose credibility. Not charging for the research, and isolating the ratings research process from any commercial relationship we have with Stars, ensures the newsworthy integrity of our research and reporting. 

Yes. We sell services and products to qualified service “stars.” For companies earning our highest ratings for customer service, we sell promotional and other services and products that expand their business. This supports our extensive research and publishing activity and is consistent with our commitment to encourage and increase excellence. 

Our publishers have been covering customer service and the building industry for more than 20 years. It is our goal and commitment to recognize those companies that provide excellence in customer service and give them the tools and third-party-credible rating that previously only big business has been able to buy. Now small and mid-size companies have access to research and tools needed to flourish. 

The Pulse of the City Customer Satisfaction Award informs others that your customers have been very satisfied. This gives both current and new customers added confidence in selecting your company for their next project. It also provides positive reinforcement for your staff members that their hard work is paying off, and motivates them to continue providing top-level customer service. 

Leverage your award news and status through our promotional programs and services exclusively marketed to award winners. 

As a Pulse of the City Customer Satisfaction Award Winner, you have access to our marketing materials that were designed to help you manage your reputation and attract and retain customers and employees. We have a step-by-step program that will help you best utilize your award. 

The standard delivery time on custom products is 4-6 weeks. Press releases and company profiles may take more or less time based on collaboration between our writers and your company. 

We publish our research findings and issue periodic press releases. Although those do benefit all star-rated companies, those that benefit the most are the ones that become involved in their own marketing and leverage the award status in their own marketing. We provide you with an opportunity and materials to market. Your engagement in your own marketing will best get your business and its award in front of your customers and prospects. We have several tools and suggestions to help you in this effort. Additionally, we distribute press releases to news services announcing the awards regularly. These releases can be targeted to specific media outlets by working with your Pulse marketing representative. 

Our research team analyzes data from multiple online and other sources including consumer and business user-review websites, blogs, websites, social media sites, industry literature and associations, nominations, and rating services. 

Yes, we have appreciation certificates and plaques designed to thank your customers and referral sources as well as to recognize your staff. 

Pulse markets promotional services to award-winning companies, but there are no “points” earned in our rating system granted to the companies that retain our services, and no penalty rating for those who do not. The revenue from sales of our promotional services does underwrite the large cost of data collection and rating services, but in terms of their value to Star Award winners based on increasing the revenues and profitability of those Stars, our promotional services stand on their own merits. 

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We are dedicated to recognizing those companies and individuals in the building and construction industry that have successfully embraced the combination of quality product and exemplary customer service. Let us help you today!