Author: Toby Emerson
It’s a given that any company should want its customers to succeed. After all, customer success translates into company success. But it’s one thing to want customer success and another to invest in it.
What does an investment in customer success look like? It starts with education. This blog covers three ways to ensure your education program empowers your customers:
1. Education Is a Continuous Process
Think of education and certification as a continuous process. Even if your customers have completed a set of courses and earned a certificate, their learning shouldn’t end. It’s not just about your customers learning a product’s features and functionality; it’s about them knowing how to use what they have to excel in their roles and reach–or exceed–their goals.
For example, Marketo customers don’t simply want to learn how to use our platform for the sake of being certified Marketo users. They are interested in being the best marketers they can be and staying at the top of their game in terms of the latest trends and techniques. As such, it’s important for us to continuously improve our education courses to provide them with ways to grow their knowledge.
By helping your customers expand their knowledge in many directions, you will help them to better adopt your product and advance their careers.
2. Education Should Be Customer-Focused
As you’re developing or enhancing your education program, don’t make the mistake of creating courses based on your idea of how someone should use your product. Listen to your customers to make sure your program reflects how they plan to leverage the tools they have.
To that end, provide them with:
- Courses that immerse students in the most-utilized functionalities and common use cases
- Training with hands-on exercises that reinforce concepts and cover all aspects of a topic from start to finish
- Certification that ensures they know how to apply their knowledge in the context of day-to-day scenarios and activities
- The opportunity to extend certification by showing proficiency in a specialized area of your product
And be sure to continually revise your program to accommodate customer needs. What new skills are your customers clamoring to learn? In what new ways are they making use of your product? Education curriculum should never be thought of as a set-it-and-forget-it program.
3. Education Drives Adoption
Using your products to their fullest potential makes your customers more reliant on and excited about your technology. That’s why it’s only logical for you to assist them in achieving whatever goals your product enables. When you guide customers to make the most effective use of the features they regularly use–and expose them to new areas of value–you are setting the foundation for higher levels of adoption and success. And that’s an outcome both your customers and company will appreciate!
As you can tell, education is something we are passionate about at Marketo. In fact, we recently announced enhancements to the Marketo University curriculum. And this is just the first of a number of enhancements planned for our program this year, so stay tuned for additional ways Marketo users (and aspiring users) can take their skillset to new levels in 2017!
Are you running an education program? I’d love to hear about how it has benefitted your customers and your company.