Welcome to the User Adoption: Real Talk from the Experts series!
In this video series, we take a deep dive into UserIQ’s 2018 User Adoption and Onboarding Benchmarking Report, based on a survey taken earlier this year by over 450 SaaS leaders. We wanted to know — how are companies addressing user adoption challenges today? How are they measuring success, executing initiatives and maintaining momentum? To help us dig into these key findings, we’re featuring the customer success experts themselves.
Irit Eizips, Chief Executive Offer at CSM Practice will be sharing best practices for creating an onboarding experience that is meaningful for your customers and that will ultimately, reduce churn.
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Download the 2018 SaaS User Adoption & Onboarding Benchmarking Report to see how more than 450 SaaS leaders handle these initiatives today and how your company stacks up.
Hello, my customer success friends. Irit Eizips here from CSM Practice, the Customer Success Consulting firm.
I was reading through the benchmark report from UserIQ. I noted that many of the respondents said that they don’t have a very well-defined onboarding process. So I decided to dedicate this video to share some of the best practices for creating an onboarding experience that’s meaningful for your new customers and will result in reduced churn. Look, at the end of the day, whether a client churns or not is mainly dependent on two things. One, a meaningful relationship with you and your company. And secondly, a meaningful value to them based on their business needs.
The first thing that you might want to think about is sending out an email from your CEO. Starting with a welcome email from the CEO helps establish the relationship with your clients on a positive note. The next email you wanna fire off is a direct email from your customer success manager. For those of you saying, “Irit, we’re a very large organization and actually onboarding is largely dependent on the professional services or perhaps the account executive is the one that sets up the initial kickoff meeting.” That’s totally fine. Regardless, the customer success manager should have a touchpoint during onboarding. And it’s very imperative that they will sort of be the good cop/bad cop and serve as the quarterback for the client during the onboarding period even if they’re not the one leading the onboarding effort. In fact, not only do I recommend that the customer success manager sends one email that says, “Welcome aboard,” right after the CEO’s email, but potentially if you have a customer success solution that could launch a series of emails, have them start sending it out automatically every few days with additional introductions to resources for self-learning and a better understanding, value of the solution to customers like them.
So you can actually, if you’re more sophisticated, you can actually build something that’s similar to what we call ABM, which is account based marketing, and launch a different series of emails pending the account’s profile. For that, you will have to actually define what is the value or the main categories of value that the sales rep has identified in the beginning of the process for larger accounts, or identify within the application what are the main use cases that your client is looking to achieve with you.
After we’ve nurtured that account, I definitely recommend that the customer success manager would be part of the kickoff meeting and start building that relationship with the customer during onboarding. So certainly check up points during the onboarding are not uncommon for high touch, certainly for white glove clients. Even mid-market accounts should receive some level of personal touch, especially if we identify that they are in risk during the onboarding phase. And again, we’re not expecting necessarily the customer success manager to own the onboarding process. Even if the onboarding process is handled by another team, we want to make sure that we have some tools at our disposal to identify the customer’s health. And for that, I recommend to do two things. One is carefully monitor the customer’s health during onboarding. And the second one is to send a survey midway through the onboarding to get their level of sentiment about the onboarding. Are the happy with us? Is it in line with their expectations? So that you can flag any risks in onboarding ahead of time.
Your score card for customers during onboarding should be vastly different than the ones that are already past the onboarding phase and are well into their adoption and expansion phases. Why? First of all, we’re not expecting adoption to be extremely high or even in the same patterns as customers that have already achieved their first value delivered. Secondly, we might have a different first value delivered identified with each, and so we might have different adoption metrics that we want to look into during the onboarding to really say whether or not a client is adopting as fast as we want to versus as deep as we would like, which is something that I might recommend doing during the adoption phase. So, during the onboarding, we would look at different indicators of health than we would during adoption, and thereby, you should definitely consider creating a separate health score for customers during onboarding versus the ones that are not.
The two other things that I’d like to suggest, and I’ll finish with that, is definitely have a good understanding of what is the first value delivered for your customer and why did the customer purchase your solution. This is going to be critical to drive in year one. Pay attention that not only is this embedded or recorded in one of your systems, but then in year two, expand on that value perception. So, it is your mission to identify what was the first value delivered or the initial reason that the clients purchased your solution, and then expand on that in year two. And then monitor your adoption and usage trends to see that they are actually expanding on additional use cases. That’s a great use for a solution like UserIQ to track these kind of trends. If you need any help with your user adoption data and what to do and how to get the most value out of it, whether you’re using just UserIQ or other customer success systems, that you can leverage it, contact us at CSM Practice. We have a vast experience leveraging adoption data to create health scores, calls to action, and being proactive with your customers.
That’s it for me. Thank you so much for listening. Please check out the User Adoption and Onboarding Benchmarking Report from UserIQ. Take care.