A company’s customer education program is a tool that teaches customers how to use their new items. Customer education is critical for boosting customer adoption since it educates customers on how to complete tasks independently and efficiently. Customer education initiatives can help customers and customer-facing personnel has a happy, effective experience.
In most cases, the Customer Success team takes the lead in onboarding new clients, teaching them about features and services. However, when the client base expands, it’s more realistic to implement a formal customer education program to assist the growing user base.
Customer Education Program Key Ingredients
When we map these advantages to the customer lifecycle, we find something interesting: customer education can have a demonstrable influence on the business across the customer lifecycle. But where do you begin? What exactly will it take to make this a reality?
Step 1: Align on objectives and prioritize for maximum impact.
To create a successful customer education program, you must first comprehend the program’s strategic business impact. To do so, you’ll need to align yourself with every level of the organization, setting realistic goals along the way.
- Business Objectives: Talk to your company’s top executives (e.g., the C-suite, the board of directors (if relevant), and others) about customer acquisition, lifetime value (LTV), and other metrics they might use to make strategic decisions. Your customer education campaign won’t get very far if it doesn’t have top-level support.
- Departmental Goals: Customer education has an impact across the firm, affecting Sales, Marketing, and Customer Success to varying degrees. As a result, you should think about what they’re utilizing as success proxies and how customer education might assist their success.
- Team Goals: Think about user-level indicators like engagement rates and course completion when thinking about team goals.
If you remember only one thing from this stage, make it this: various members of the team utilize different metrics to gauge success. Regardless of the differences, customer education must be placed in the middle. Remember to highlight how customer education can be a win-win situation for everyone involved when you’re aligning on goals and prioritizing for effect.
Step 2: Distribute Resources
The truth is that you won’t be able to achieve your ideal state straight away. It will take time to tailor your customer education program to your company’s and consumers’ specific needs. But that doesn’t rule out the possibility of getting started. While a lack of resources may appear to be a disadvantage, there are steps you can take to lay a solid foundation for your academy’s future condition.
- Focus on the Upsides: When you’re just starting out, don’t get too caught up in world-class academies like HubSpot. Instead, concentrate on any immediate rewards. What can you do right now to start shifting the needle in the correct direction? You’ll struggle to get off the ground if you’re continually thinking about what you could have. However, having a wishlist of features and capabilities you’d like to deploy when resources are available is acceptable.
- Borrow Resources: Creating your academy doesn’t always mean that the tools and resources you’ll need will come from your budget. Check with other departments to see if they have any expendable resources you may use. Perhaps the marketing department has an intern with video experience that you could hire for a week or two.
- Communicate Frequently: Never underestimate the power of words. Meet with executives and pique their interest.
Step 3: Produce and Distribute
You already know what kind of business results you want to achieve, therefore the question is: what kind of objectives can you help your consumers reach—through educational resources—that will ultimately lead to the business outcome you want to achieve? These are what we refer to as learning objectives. You may start mapping out the learning journey your consumers will follow to attain their learning objectives once you’ve nailed down your learning objectives. Consider the following when you’re doing so:
- The Topic: What are you going to teach your customers about? You might offer educational content, case studies, interactive courses, or all three in this scenario. This charge should be led by your subject matter experts (SMEs), who will help steer the content production process.
- Decide on the type of material you’ll create in the Content Mix. Learners don’t respond well to a wall of text, so use movies, slideshows, infographics, and quizzes to make learning more fun and dynamic.
- Content-Length: Even the most ideal content mix can only take you so far. The reality is that most of your consumers don’t have the time to sit and learn for hours, which is why you should make your lectures brief and to the point. Six little portions are more digestible than a single large lecture.
- The Method of Delivery: Learning must take place at the correct time and in the right place to be effective. Assemble a tech stack that allows you to provide clients with contextually appropriate experiences.
Customers are no longer confined to their desks, as we all know. Make sure your academy is as functional on mobile as it is on a computer. In that manner, people can get training whenever and wherever it is convenient for them. Then decide how you’ll notify your customers to encourage them to participate.
Step 4: Measure, Measure, Measure
Once you start delivering content, your job isn’t done. It’s just getting started, in fact. After you’ve started, it’s time to track your progress.
For this purpose, collect both qualitative and quantitative feedback to help you enhance your program. Keep the door open for feedback if you really want to get to know your students. Also, keep the door open. Send surveys, ask for feedback in the final section of the course, and include your email address. Whatever it takes to get people talking. After that, you can evaluate the feedback.
You can use our guide to creating a feedback loop.
Now that you know how important customer education is and how it affects your consumers at every stage of their journey, it’s time to create your own system. The five steps below will assist you in developing and launching your customer education strategy.
- Create a customer journey map.
- Begin with a single course.
- Create courses based on results rather than features.
- Produce engaging content
- Choose the best customer education platform for you.
Learn more about Customer Success on our blog.