This is not a prediction. It is more of a description of trends that are already underway. Some of you early adopters are riding these customer education trends to high success. Others are missing out mostly because your education operations are new or are in a low maturity state. The good news is that a low maturity state is normal and temporary. You can grow your organization into higher maturity stages by increasing your capabilities over time. One way to know what capabilities to add to your team is to understand where there trends are headed. Below are four customer education trends that are happening right now, and it is not too late for you to get on board to ride them.
Sarah Sproehnle was Cloudera Employee #20, so she's seen the company through a lot of interesting times. From when it was just a small start-up to its new IPO state, Sarah's seen it all. While initially hired to build a training organization, Sarah is now the VP of Customer Success. She brought the idea of having a formal CS department to Tom Reilly, the CEO of Cloudera, since she knew it would help the company achieve some of the overall business goals they were working on.
In May 2017, we co-located our Business of Customer Education Conference (BOCE) at the Gainsight Pulse Customer Success Conference. The session audio was recorded, and we wanted to make them available. We had speakers from Workplace by Facebook, Atlassian, Gainsight, Cloudera, MuleSoft, Couchbase, and ServiceRocket, each of which shared their stories for how customer education plays a role in customer success. Below is a brief recap of each session and a link to the audio recording.
One of the questions I get asked most by early stage enterprise software companies that begin to train customers is how to build scalable customer education programs. I even get this question on open forums. The trouble with this question is that the answer is always, "It depends." Although there are several ways to deliver scalable customer education, not each method will work for each company depending on maturity level of that organization. It is important, therefore, to understand various ways to deliver scalable training to customers, so you can make decisions about which method will work for you and your customers.