Customer success is changing. Gone are the standard days of implementation and support tickets. With technology companies producing more complex software, properly educating customers is quickly becoming a top priority.
Fortunately, many companies have recently begun hiring customer success managers and building out customer success programs to help mitigate churn, increase retention, and promote loyalty amongst their customer base. However, these initial programs and departments are still in their infancy. How will companies take these programs to the next level? How will they continue to meet and exceed their customer’s needs and expectations?
Enter: Customer Education Programs
Customers have always needed training; back in the day it consisted of 300-page user manuals and costly onboarding sessions. Today, it’s becoming increasingly more efficient to deliver augmented programs online. By implementing an extended enterprise learning management system (LMS), your customer education program can support customers 24 hours a day, seven days a week, at a much lower cost than what you’re accustomed to today. Don’t believe us? Here are six reasons you need to implement an LMS-enabled customer education program.
1. You’re manually onboarding customers, 1-on-1
Onboarding is usually time-consuming, tedious, and frankly, a nightmare to schedule. Your customer success team is better off creating an onboarding course which details everything customers will need to know to get started.
This will give your customers a chance to familiarize themselves with your product and develop questions a customer success manager will be better suited to address. Additionally, it will empower your customer success team to reach out and have focused discussions around success-orientated advice and feedback based on metrics tracked in the LMS.
2. You’re manually tracking customer training — if at all
Many companies realize the value of training their employees. However, this is also true of training their customers. According to a recent gallup survey, organizations with high customer engagement typically outperform others by at least 30% (not to mention, they see 50% higher revenue too).
What better way to engage your customers than through training? Educating them on how to use your product and services to strengthen their business and bottom line is a most compelling form of engagement
3. Blended learning isn’t a part of your training program.
We mentioned the importance of using an LMS for your customer education program; however, this doesn’t mean your customer success team shouldn’t be adding value as well. Combining asynchronous online and instructor-led training is known as ‘blended’ learning. This approach allows you to continually engage your customers, while also supplementing your online training with webinars, conferences, and live sessions.
4. You’ll be a cross-departmental hero
Who doesn’t want to positively impact the business? Optimizing your extended enterprise LMS can allow you to positively impact other departments as well. Marketing can drive awareness and leads by offering public courses, nurture those leads mid-funnel, run retention programs, and even provide sales with amazing courses as enablement tools; making you a cross-departmental hero.
5. Help foster community among your users
Another recent trend in customer success is the increase in communities and other tools to make customer’s lives easier.
Private communities connect your customers with their peers; allowing them to engage and discuss your customer education efforts, product updates, and their knowledge and best practices. Your customer success team can gain plenty of insightful information from these conversations as well, which is an added benefit of these communities.
6. Reduce support costs.
Who doesn’t love saving money? By implementing a customer education program, you’ll be able to do just that. Creating a program that leverages an extended enterprise LMS will allow your customers to take your training whenever and wherever they want, thus freeing up your CSRs from support calls, and allowing them to focus on building relationships with your customers instead.
Not to mention the costs associated with flying trainers to be on location with your customers. These trips can become costly when you start to add up accommodations, food, lost hours of work, and travel. An extended enterprise LMS can save you and your customers thousands in miscellaneous costs alone.
If modern companies truly want to position their customers for success, they’ll need to create programs that can quickly scale and truly reach all of their customers at every stage of their lifecycle. Customer education programs provide the best and most innovative way for companies to do this.
Carlos is a passionate writer and marketing/communications professional from New York, NY. He loves to read books and occasionally pretends to be a skilled photographer. You can learn more about him by visiting his site: CarlosERusso.com.
Originally published at www.salesforce.com.