Here is the question of the day: "How far do you go to help a customer adopt your software?" I ask this question to many of our guests, and there isn't one right answer. As you can imagine, there are many answers. In other words, "It depends." My favorite answer now comes from Arjun Devgan, VP of global customer success and services at Percolate. His answer is to create a methodology for adopting the software, publish an eBook describing it, and then publish tools customers can use during their implementation or digital transformation.
This is just like the question I received after my talk at CS100 Summit 2018 run by ClientSuccess about what courses one should start building if there is nothing today. The second course topic I suggested is to create a course on your rollout methodology. The idea is to help a customer with a proven process for getting up and running on your software. Presumably, you have such a process. Why not teach customers how to do it?
Percolate codified their process in "The Percolate Adoption Framework." Which anyone can download. Take a look. It will inspire you.
Help customers see the future
Helping customers adopt your product is not just about using the software. To be successful, a ton of work needs to go into helping the customer see what's possible with the software. If you examine Percolate's adoption framework, you will immediately notice that step one is about painting a vision of the future for your customers. And this step, should not happen after a prospect becomes a customer. That might be too late. Helping a customer see the future of what their work, team, and company will be like if they implement your software and the new work processes associated with your software, should happen BEFORE they become customers.
As Arjun explains, "As with any software that is deployed to large groups of users, you have to be thoughtful about how you help customers think about this stuff." We have to help customers at every stage, including during the buying process. One of the best ways to "up" the customer experience, is to help them plan ahead for the day they do decided to buy your software. This way, they can hit the ground running. "As it becomes evident that a customer is going to partner with you, ask yourself, 'How much information can you give them to start to think and plan...and do the upfront and readiness prep in order to hit the ground running when the project begins," says Arjun.
The alternative is to waste the first four to six weeks of customer time after they become a customer educating them on how to get ready for the change that they are about to go through.
Don't waste your customers' time.
Learn more about Arjun:
- The Percolate Adoption Framework
- Arjun's Gainsight Blog, The Customer Success Identity Crisis
- Arjun on Linkedin
- Arjun on Twitter
- Arjun at Percolate: https://percolate.com/team#
- Here is the Workplace by Facebook methodology we talked about
- That Jay Acunzo blog: Confessions of a content creator: I don't care about data
- Jay Acunzo was on Episode 92. Give that a listen
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