Customer happiness. Customer loyalty. Customer reference. These are essential to any thriving business, and there are thousands if not millions of different strategies for boosting all of them. All three of these categories are branches from the same tree, but what I’m interested in most of all is the root: customer adoption.
Marketers and Sales teams can lose focus after the point-of-sale, particularly in the world of technology and SaaS. If the deal is made, and the implementation team is up-to-speed on usage, too often that is simply the end of the line for the vendor. This is frankly a terrible business strategy. It leaves things up to chance – what if your advocate leaves the company? What if your contract’s renewal will end up depending on an unreliable user? Foster an understanding of your product by all who might be related to it – not just everyday usage, but also the strategic coordinators and even executives. Remember that if your product is worth selling, you’re providing a tangible benefit that will increase efficiency, speed, or generally profit across their business. You’re making their lives easier and their numbers better. So crow about it. Get involved, show them what they have at their own fingertips. This is a dying art, but for Apttus and other like-minded companies, it’s simply known as being a good business partner.
Take Aesynt, a fantastic brand that recently achieved 100% user adoption for its sales software tools. What’s the best statistical takeaway from this implementation? It’s not the growth in their revenue. It’s their reported 30% increase in customer engagement by their sales team. Imagine – being able to tell a customer their spokespeople are spending 1/3 more time in front of customers. That’s real value and it’s only possible when their full team comes onboard.
Even after adoption, it’s important to stay involved. Your customers may not always want to have their hands held, but they do want to know the best tips and tricks for making the product really perform at the speed of their business. This is particularly true for Sales and E-Commerce software – improve their processes, and you’ll have extreme visibility into the highest levels of your client’s organization. C-level interest in how the financial numbers are coming together can never be underestimated, and it’s important that the methods, techniques, and tools being used are effectively explained by your internal representatives.
So what’s the bottom line? Essentially, that a ‘sale’ is only the halfway point. It’s a mistake to think that customers are only interested in what you are selling from a product-perspective. You are also providing them your services, your dedication, your passion for taking them to the next level. This is a philosophy that defies lip service; you have to prove it. Focusing on user adoption is where you begin.