Rethinking how we do digital engagement

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Brian O'Keeffe
Brian O'Keeffe Member Posts: 209 Expert
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For onboarding what is your most successful digital strategy? I have onboarding messages via an automation CSM tool in place that are very specific to the administrators and a super simple new user onboarding single message. There is a series for admins, up to five, and the stats show me the results vary, greatly. Engagement and interaction drop over the series. New customers with a high spend? They tend to be very engaged. Lower spend customers? Less engaged. What do you do? What works? What besides email have you used?

I am thinking of auto assigning every new person in the system automatic new user on-demand onboarding modules that are required to complete. VS asking them to sign up. Rewarding those that complete the module in a set time period and marking them certified users and making it a mark of distinction and pride. (A weekly thanking and acknowledging them publicly etc...)

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  • Shauna McClemens
    Shauna McClemens Member Posts: 2 Navigator
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    Hey @Brian O'Keeffe - I lead scaled success programs through our community success hub -- big fan of pointing everything scaled back to community (strategic/product content, training materials, events and office hours)

    We recently created a specific onboarding role that presents specific content we think will be most relevant to onboarding users so they can easily find onboarding materials (and customers who are past onboarding don't see content they are less likely to need, and we can show them content that's more relevant to where they are in the user journey)

    I've also noticed higher engagement from higher spend customers - this might just be my vertical, but sometimes the higher spend customers have more bandwidth to focus on my product, while POCs from smaller customers might be wearing a lot of hats -- my solution here is to include content in my content calendar that'll still hook folks strapped for time -- I try and think of low hanging fruit and ways they can get ROI without watching long videos or devoting a half day to a complex project.

    Think about all those personas and thinking about who needs a quick launch guide to get to a minimum viable product up and running vs. an enterprise client who will want all the things and have the time and resources to set them up (and everyone in between).

  • kmcmullen
    kmcmullen Member Posts: 14 Navigator
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    I think your current approach is an amazing start! Something to consider (and not knowing your specific customer journey) is asking whomever brings them into your organization how they are positioning this new series. Are they aware? Can they share it's a 5-part series? Set the expectations with the customer.

    Potentially for lower-spend/less engaged you offer a workshop or 1:many type model of sorts. Can they join with other clients and a member of your CSM (as the admin) and crush the onboarding series together over an hours time, for example? This gets them through the content you want, gives them a chance to meet with peers, & has your CSM as the organizational expert for any questions. Questions asked here could be a good indicator of what is causing the drop-off in engagement.

  • richardconvery
    richardconvery Member, CS Leader Posts: 8 Navigator
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    Hi Brian,

    Have you considered having a centralised checklist of items that need to be completed by those users, that they can update? As part of the kick off I would explain the value, both to the company and the individual contributors, that they gain by doing the tasks and would share with them that the progress list (i.e. the status of their checkpoints) is seen by the economic buyer too. It's a bit of carrot and stick approach. I'd also stress the need for them to commit to doing these within the first week. As we all know, time is a killer when it comes to onboarding and momentum!

  • Brian O'Keeffe
    Brian O'Keeffe Member Posts: 209 Expert
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    edited August 2023
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    Thank you. I am a huge fan of Community centered CS! Right now it is not an option. Can you expand on what you mean by onboarding role? Is that a CS role, or a user role you are assigning?

    I agree, the higher the spend the more likely a deeper sense of engagement. I am reworking everything to provide smaller customers with a lot less, to empower them to get the basics down with a bare bones up and running system. Then, look for data driven expansion opportunities.

    It is important to meet customers where they are (I bough you so I can use X) and not get caught in the blinder of trying to get them to use all of the software (X is great, but what about Y, Z and Q? Y, Z) and tailor the user experience to that.

  • Brian O'Keeffe
    Brian O'Keeffe Member Posts: 209 Expert
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    No, they are not aware of the series and there is no indication that it will start. Sales does the hand off and then after X days, it starts. We assume too much, thank you for pointing that out.

    I love the idea and of inviting new users with similar profiles/industries together for an onboarding sessions with Q&A. Leveraging collective knowledge and experience and letting customers talk to each other. I am adding this to my list of initiatives, thank you.

  • Brian O'Keeffe
    Brian O'Keeffe Member Posts: 209 Expert
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    I have thought of this. In my example, there is no kickoff. (I have always had a kick off in the past, which established a clear starting point.) They are to small and sign up and are "live" in seconds. (Though not fully functional.) I love the checklist and am thinking of creating one and marking it an assignment with due dates. Due dates that come with reminders and over due notifications. (Risky, yes. Obnoxious, perhaps?) Rewarding those that complete it before or by the due date. As you note, the longer onboarding tasks remain incomplete, the more likely they are not to renew. I have seen that over and over.

    Thanks for sharing your ideas!

  • richardconvery
    richardconvery Member, CS Leader Posts: 8 Navigator
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    Hi Brian,

    In my app I use HelpHero. Once you embed it (it is REALLY simple for tech teams to add this in) you can create checklists, walkthroughs, and guides from within your app). I was going to post the link to the checklist functionality but I can't on here, so search google for "helphero checklist" to have a look.


    Happy to demonstrate how I use this to you over a call if you wish.

  • Brian O'Keeffe
    Brian O'Keeffe Member Posts: 209 Expert
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    Thanks, I love the idea. I doubt I can consider yet another software solution (we have so many) for this.

  • ew
    ew Member Posts: 1 Newcomer
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    Hi Brian!

    I created a custom sales handoff campaign sent directly from the account executive for our tech touch segment. It explains that they have included onboarding services and introduces the program/team. From there, we have a follow up kick off/welcome that appears to piggyback off of that sales handoff campaign email.

    I found two things have made this an impactful program after this point - choice and tracking. Every email campaign sent has a custom "tracker" image at the top that lets the customer know where they are in their onboarding process. We also give customers learning modality choices - webinar vs course vs knowledge base/written content at key points.

    I am also launching in-app messaging at drop off points to reengage - not enough data to report back on effectiveness yet, though.

  • Brian O'Keeffe
    Brian O'Keeffe Member Posts: 209 Expert
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    This is great, thank you. In the past, I created a sales to services/CSM hand off where all parties, customer, sales, services and csm got on a call to mark the deployment live. This helped so much in eliminating us marking them live and the customer not considering themselves live, or worse, the false expectation of a stage two (or three or more) deployment phase. (Neglected elements that would get deployed later, without any funding or planning and which become giant detracting elements and lead to non-renewal.)

    I love your hand off solution. The phase tracking is very clever too. I have yet to use in app, the biggest issue is that it is so overused that right now it feedback tells us it will not be appreciated.