The Community Club

Discussion on: AMA with Holly Firestone

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dariabyrne78 profile image
Daria Byrne

Holly, we are looking to tether knowledge enablement to KPIs specifically product support ticket frequency. Have you specifically seen community engagement reduce product support tickets? If so, could you provide more detail? Also, what are best practices for a software company to roll out community and garner buy-in from constituents as opposed to constituents viewing it as "just another application"? Thanks!

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hollyfirestone profile image
Holly Firestone Ask Me Anything

Absolutely have seen community engagement that correlates with reduced support tickets. At Salesforce, we used a combination of page views and questions answered on our forums to calculate support deflection savings. I'll do something similar a Venafi once we've grown enough to do so.

For the second question, a marketing strategy is an absolute must for any community. You wouldn't roll out a product or host a conference without marketing it to your audience(s), so the same goes for community. I highly recommend working with your marketing team to build an external marketing campaign that aligns with your launch, but also ongoing. Make sure that joining the community is an important part of new customer onboarding. Make sure you have consistent messaging around what the community is and how membership brings value.

On top of the external marketing that needs to happen, there absolutely has to be an internal marketing effort. Create success metrics around the company as a whole understanding what community is and why it's important. Double down with that message for all customer-facing teams. You can customize the message for each of your internal audiences so they understand what's in it for them. For example, if you're presenting to a Sales team about community, make it clear what it means for attrition and customer expansion. Also, make it easy! Give them a community cheat sheet with the top things they need to know. Put together a slide they can include in decks when presenting to customers. Getting your internal teams bought in on community is huge. I can't stress that enough. If you can get the leaders of internal teams to require community goals as a part of their team's individual goals, even better. Everyone feeling like they are responsible for the success of the community will lead to incredible results.

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dariabyrne78 profile image
Daria Byrne

Thanks for your thorough response, Holly! Appreciate your insight!