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Happy New Year!
I hope you had a wonderful holiday season, and for many of us a fantastic first week back "in action" at work.
In the spirit of "new," this newsletter is something I'm writing to provide value to you and our clients each week.
The goal is to share short, tactical advice that you can use to implement something each week that will grow your online training business or program.
Thanks so much for your continued support. 2022 was an amazing year of collaborations with our B2B SaaS partners.
Now on to the first edition of the newsletter -
The Year for Customer Education
As many teams start racing toward new goals for 2023, we have a lot to be hopeful about.
Last year was a massive success and “explosion” of the term #customer education.
This has been our mission for more than 7 years, but thanks to the absolute success of the customer education strategy across industries, customer education is becoming a true discipline in tech and many teams are moving to education-as-a-service models.
In fact, the 4th annual State of Customer Education Survey, a study performed by Thought Industries and IDC, illustrates how investments in customer education lead to profound results across the customer lifecycle. For example, in their study they noted that -
- Companies across industries are realizing 10% to 16% increases in performance on key metrics across every segment of the customer life cycle, from demand generation through sales, onboarding, renewal, and growth.
- Roughly one-quarter of the change in those business measures was attributed to customer and extended enterprise training.
The Year Ahead
So, looking at the year in front of us.
2023 is set to be an incredible year for Customer Education. (Not only in SaaS and Tech, but in so many other adjacent industries as well.)
The State of Technology Services 2023 report, developed by TSIA, illustrates that the implementation of educational services as a revenue engine is up 2%, but the gross margin of education services is up 38% - powered by the increased use of eLearning and on-demand content libraries for customer education.
Question For You - Finding the "Fit"
Organizations are doubling down on demand-generation strategies:
- focusing on high-quality content,
- narrowing audience segments, and l
- ooking at intent signals.
Because customer education supports many of these objectives, more organizations are trying to figure out “where customer education fits” within their organization.
I challenge you to think about your goals for training -
- Are they more "lead" or "demand" oriented? (product / service edu-marketing)
- Are they focused on retention? (customer success & professional services)
If you’re planning, brainstorming, or putting the finishing touches on Q1/Q2 training initiatives do these 4 things to build a program customers love:
1️⃣ Identify what goal your education program/team is moving forward in the business.
Customer education can serve many functions - demand gen, onboarding and success, or even sales pipeline acceleration.
👉 Pick one of these to start. Then go.
2️⃣ Experiment with content and experiences that validate demand.
Not everything has to be a “masterclass” for it to be successful. There are so many 'lo-fi' ways to communicate and educate successfully.
👉 View initial launches and programs as "experiments" - don't think the program is failing if one or two things aren't perfect.
3️⃣ Produce and Multiply the Successful Experiments
Once you’re onto a good thing, replicate and maximize the potential success through high-quality production, content libraries, and cross-channel distribution.
👉 Content + Experiences. More Formats. More Engagement.
4️⃣ Automate delivery as much as possible.
To keep costs low and remove barriers for clients, put as much of your program into on-demand, in-app or low-gate experiences in play as possible.
That wraps this issue of the Customer Education Blueprint! Let me know if you found this content helpful by just hitting "reply" with a note.
Here’s to a great 2023! I wish you all the best this year.
Matt T. & the ThinkThru crew.