Do your customers reach out with frequently asked questions? While a FAQ section on your website can help answer these common issues, consider how a training module that addresses basic questions and more can affect your client churn level. If you give your clients the information they need to succeed, they’ll be better poised to fully use your product or service, because they see the benefits.
Professional development (PD) for your customers means you give them the information they need to apply your product/service successfully. If a client questions why or how something works, you want to be poised to offer the solution that combines your product/service and how to use it to push customers’ business forward.
PD isn’t geared solely toward your employees — your customers need to learn how to use your product or service to compete with and get ahead of the competition. You can meet or exceed those needs with a robust PD program for customers, and more companies are providing just such a program. For example, Brandon Hall Group discovered 54 percent of companies are offering extended audience training for their customers. When you show your customers how your product or service helps them connect with and boost their offerings to their clients, everyone wins.
Let’s look at how a customer PD program helps everyone succeed.
Use customer PD to avoid common “exit points”
Companies with a confusing service or product experience several exit points starting at the front end of their offering. For example, if a customer doesn’t immediately understand how your product or service can help them succeed, they might be apt to “exit” your service model. If they can’t figure it out on their own, they’re likely to move on to the next offering.
You can avoid this first “exit point” by offering PD that shows customers how best to use your product or service to delight their customers. When you offer training (PD) to help your clients leverage your product/service, they can push that training forward to their customers, giving them the tools and information to succeed.
Showing your customers “what to do” instead of “how to do it” gives them options that are more cost effective and result in less customer churn.
Identify friction points
Customer PD helps assuage friction points, but doesn’t eliminate them. A thorough customer PD plan shows your customers how they can use your product/service to create a successful offering. When your customers realize how your product or service exceeds their clients’ needs, a comprehensive customer training plan boosts their connection with your service or product.
Creating customer PD helps your clients reach their customers with proven strategies and information that moves them from lower level questions to top level information that feeds their product/service. Giving PD means you’re invested in your clients’ success as well.
Offer a training strategy
Choosing a training strategy depends on your product or service and your customer profile. Most companies focus on customer-centric results. When you promote your product’s various features, you can focus your PD training on a wide variety of demographics. As such, offering PD to your customers amplifies benefits from your clients to their customers by offering a better perspective on why certain features exist and how best to benefit from them.
Instead of offering theory-dense information to your customers, offer them easy-to-understand training information they can share with their clients so they see a viable result.
Focus on self-paced, personalized training
Whether your customers need personalized training to best use your product or service, or if they want to offer their clients a more in-depth experience, end users want training that is self-paced and personalized to their specific needs. If you can offer that level of PD, your customers will take advantage of your training and present it to their clients. Not only are your customers covered with advanced training, but they can also offer that resource to their clients.
Try using different learning methods to appeal to a wider audience by employing a variety of tools like video and other learning methods according to your users’ needs and wants. If you offer the basic training methodology to your clients, they can, in turn, offer the same experience to their customers.
How do you know your clients want this level of training? First, if your employees require more information than what’s commonly offered, you can assume your customers will have the same questions. You’re better off with more information and training than less.
Make sure to reach out to your customers to see where they stand on understanding and using your product or service. Surveys help you delve deeper into their needs and wants. Once you understand what your customers need, you can easily meet or exceed their wants/desires. Training is the first line for answering questions — and getting results.