With the rise of the customer success philosophy, companies are spending even more on corporate training. They know well-trained customers use their products more, get more engaged, and are most likely to remain loyal. That's why it's important to measure the effectiveness of your training, to ensure that they're learning as much as they can, and can use what they learn.
Recently, Bill Cushard, ServiceRocket's Director of Marketing and a Customer Success strategist, was a guest on a webinar hosted by ClientSuccess, talking about customer education (CE) strategies. Bill is a strong advocate for CE strategies because they help CE professionals be proactive in their work, and help them avoid simply reacting to customer requests for training or mandates from "on high."
How do you price your customer education (CE) programs? Do you have a strategy you use to assess the value of the program, the cost of the delivery method, and market competition?
Many software companies treat training as an afterthought, only selling enough of it to get customers up and running. They're missing out on the competitive advantage that training gives them. Instead of using it as an add-on, why not use it to stand out from the crowd?
"How should I promote my training?" That is the main question I get asked when I talk to customers and one of the biggest pain points I am seeing in the customer education world.
What is strategy? A quick dictionary search on Merriam-Webster shows it can mean "a careful plan or method" and "the art of devising or employing plans toward a goal". In sports or war, strategies are pretty clear, because no matter what changes during the course of the event, the end goal is the same: to win. In business it's not so clear; in Customer Education (CE) it becomes even murkier.
When it comes to our customer education strategies, most of us are in reaction mode. This can get us into trouble because we make promises that are difficult to keep, work quality can suffer, and we could very easily neglect existing customers. The only way to avoid getting caught up in reaction mode is to proactively develop a customer education strategy that is aligned with the most important goals of the business. Only when we focus our efforts on what is most important, do we move the business forward.
Topics: Customer Education
If the main goal of your company is 'growth' right now, whether that's growing revenue or customers, did you know that a customer education strategy could help with that? Marketing and education colleagues are probably already working together to promote their education programs and to create new ones to support future marketing campaigns. But what else could these two teams learn from each other to promote company growth?
The mantra from most business executives is "expansion in all ways", and for most teams in the organization, it's easy to figure out how to do that. Customer education (CE) leaders want to do their part too, so how can they sell more education programs? One way is to partner with sales teams to sell education and offering them incentives to do so.
"What is the Empire State Building?"
"Who is Picasso?"
"What is the Atlantic Ocean?"
One of my favorite things is trivia and more specifically, Jeopardy! I try to catch the show every weekday and have been trying to get on the show for the last two decades. (Without success, mind you, but I'll keep trying!) Even though I'm well-removed from my last formal classroom setting, I still remember a lot of what I learned because I'm constantly using the information. Nightly Jeopardy games, monthly trivia games with friends, and the daily New York Times crossword puzzle keep this information fresh in my mind so that it's always easy to retrieve.