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."
"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.
The most recent Customer Education University course, How to Build and Run a Strategic Customer Education Operation, is coming to an end, and students are finishing the final assessment and collecting their certificates of completion. Congratulations to all who completed the work. Among the many topics covered in the course, one of the most popular, judging on how much time we spent on it, was how to price training.
Fender has an adoption problem. Here are the stats. As reported in The Verge, ten years ago, 1.5 million electric guitars were sold. Today, it is down to one million. That's bad, but it gets worse. Fender discovered that 90% of all new guitar players quit in the first 12 months of purchasing a guitar. If you were thinking of going to the guitar business and saw those numbers, you would open up an online bookstore, figuring you'd have a better chance competing against Amazon.
If you look back through our blog posts in October, you will notice a theme about building new customer education team capabilities and individual skills. In this final blog of October, I want to introduce a new capability that I think will be the number one most critical capability customer education professionals will develop to set themselves apart from other leaders in the organization. That capability is to implement jobs-to-be-done theory in everything customer education does.
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.
I am always surprised when I hear from customer education professionals that the customer education function does not get the respect it deserves. I believe it is quite the opposite. So much so, that I believe education is not only a vital and strategic operation at a technology company, but a function from which it's leaders can take a career path to many other functions in the business.
If you don't have a good customer education tech stack, you can't nail customer success. Your customer education program maps to customer success activities like new customer onboarding, identifying and engaging at-risk customers to prevent churn, and engaging with paying customers to ensure they're getting the most out of your tech products. Your customer education team needs to be able to work efficiently and effectively to create and modify education programs that will lead to higher customer engagement, increased renewals and retention, and better relationships with your prospects, leads, and customers.
They can't do that if you don't have the right tech stack to create, develop, deliver, and track your education programs. The tech stack you use matters because it gives you more variety in your delivery methods, gives you deeper insight into your existing education programs, and allows you to collaborate more efficiently with non-training teams like marketing, sales, and of course, customer success.
When it comes to onboarding and managing customer relationships, superb organization and communication are paramount. ServiceRocket held a webinar on how to use Workplace by Facebook to manage every aspect of customer accounts.
As a Workplace by Facebook partner, ServiceRocket is helping organizations all over the world learn, implement and adopt Workplace to connect people, break down silos, and help organizations create collaborative cultures.
ServiceRocket co-hosts Bill Cushard and Sarah E. Brown were joined by special guest Robert Porter, Strategic Partner Manager at Facebook, for this hour-long webinar.
Have you ever tried to use new software after going through the initial training on it - and still been confused about how it will help you achieve the outcomes that matter to you? Or figuring out how the new functionality released last month drive your business success? Or maybe you're still unsure about how the software helps you achieve your business outcomes, putting the renewal in jeopardy.