Launch an AI Ready, Data-Driven, Product Release & Customer Success Program
The goal, most simply put, is a product release and customer success program that really works. Even in smaller companies, it’s not unusual for the product side, the customer success side and the commercial side to become completely disconnected and this has real consequences. All three of these groups communicate with customers and partners extensively and as their mutual understanding becomes fragmented, communication with customers & partners leads to the perception of an organization that is scattered and schizophrenic.
This article describes a step by step strategy for building a program that ties together product, customer success and commercial analytics with regards to product release communications. The goal is alignment and extracting value from all of the interactions that occur across an organization, along with those occurring with customers and partners, in these moments of change and growth.
The end result is a product and customer success team that are aligned, a commercial team that receives data from non-commercial interactions with customers and partners that can help drive sales and meet marketing goals, all of which leads to a more effective organization.
Scenario: Using Entatio to Build an AI Ready, Data-Driven, Product Release Oriented, Customer Success Platform & Program
In our scenario, there is a company with a standing team of product managers, customer success professionals and internal change managers. A new product release is pending and the product team needs to inform the customer success team about this product and then the customer success team needs to engage the teams at each of their hundreds of customers with the goal of driving adoption and eliminating issues related to rolling out the new release, while generating data for the commercial team that has value (real time identification of opportunities & longer term trends relating feature interest to sales).
The goals are:
- Support the transfer of knowledge from the product team (and engineers if the product is a technology) to the customer success team
- Support the transfer of knowledge from the customer success personnel to their customer’s and partner’s internal teams
- Create a platform that connects each party while maintaining access controls over communications
- Generate engagement data that provides insights for the product team to help guide further development on where interest lies with regards to product features
- Generate engagement data for the customer success team to determine the successful accomplishment of metrics related to the roll out and knowledge transfer
- Generate engagement data that can be used through standard reporting or AI by the commercial team to generate insights into how customer engagement impacts sales
- Generate data in such a way that the engagement between product and customer success can be compared to the engagement between customer success and customers to better align the knowledge pipeline from product to customers
- Provide a media-oriented communications platform (virtual parking lot) for ongoing clarification
Process for Implementation
Step 1: Product team develops a deck (powerpoint, google slide, etc. Entatio supports these) and demo videos outlining the new features, notes and procedures. They upload these into Entatio. Every individual piece of media is automatically parsed into slides and the user adds a keywords, title and description for each (metadata used by standard reporting and AI to qualify each slide). Entatio automatically creates a model in Salesforce.com and the Entatio cloud app.
The product team creates an Entatio sharing group. The customer success team, managed service and professional service team members use various Entatio tools to register for the presentation. These include bulk invite wizards, sign up forms, etc.
The product team delivers the presentation(s) virtually or in person or both. This can occur over a series of presentations. Tracking records are generated in Entatio and Entatio for Salesforce for every user that has access to the presentation and each slide, but these are created as incomplete records and only updated once the materials have been presented to or accessed by the users.
This is a critical feature of the Entatio engagement tracking that occurs between the Entatio platform and the Entatio for Salesforce.com application. Most engagement systems focus on keeping a record of what content is viewed or interacted with. Entatio is designed to view content (or knowledge) in three ways: what can the user engage, what has the user engaged and what has the user engaged again. Through this model, it is possible see how new knowledge about the release enters the population (out of all of these potential individuals, these were the first to encounter the information), how it spreads and how it saturates.
At this point, simply by uploading and presenting the powerpoint deck and other media and providing a sign-in form to your teams, along with the presentation, you have:
- An entire data set around all knowledge transfer from product to customer success
- A platform supporting the ability for your teams to continue to engage this content anywhere, anytime
- A platform that supports virtual parking lots for clarification
- And finally, all of this data is automatically sent to Force.com where AI can be applied or from Entatio.com to a data lake for other AI tools and/or can be exported to data lakes and aggregated with commercial data to derive additional insights.
Step 2: Now the customer success team takes the initial presentation and builds their own. There are a number of options, but best practice is to use the same media, create a separate presentation by adding the same slides and any additional slides. For analytics, this creates a very clean data set. By doing this, you can create a very clear insight into how the frequency with which the product and customer success team members engaged over a specific set of information differs with how the same engagement manifests between the customer success team members and the customer and partner teams. You can actually see where knowledge transfer and interest is in and out of alignment from product to customer success to customer.
The process starts over except that this time the customer success team members are delivering the presentation (which is standard across the team, though any one member can present what they need to present). The difference is that the engagement data that is generated lives in the same Salesforce.com org as the account and contact data related to the customers and partners to whom they present. You are not only facilitating and driving customer success through the knowledge transfer, you are building a data set that provides insight into commercial activities, to include the following:
Professionals of this type at this type of account engage this type of information this often
When the professionals at this type of account engage this type of information, this is the trend for sales to this account (if there is a trend; this requires Salesforce.com AI – Entatio is providing the data)
Across our market, these are the areas & features that draw the most attention and engagement
Whatever other trends the system comes across (which is the additional value by applying AI in the Force.com org).