Some products (especially SaaS) can go through several product updates in short periods of time. This can make it difficult for you to help your customers keep up with the updates and, if this is not handled correctly, can have a deep negative impact in your customer’s product usage and satisfaction.
Although product updates are great as they mean you are improving your offer, it’s important to make sure your customers don’t feel lost and lacking in product knowledge, making their satisfaction go down and ultimately questioning if it’s worth to stick around.
Next, you’ll find 4 ways to help you help your clients deal with changes in your product in a more comfortable and seamless way. Just keep in mind that, in each of these 4 strategies – ideally used together – it’s important to:
- always communicate from the point of view of your customers (how it’s going to benefit THEM)
- have an optimistic tone
- portray these updates as something natural (because you just want to offer a better product), not as a problem or exception
- be consistent, always offer the same “level of service” in providing information about each update to
- be clear on what the new update means for your users and its impact on your customers job
How can you keep your customers informed of all product updates
1. Customer Training
– Keep your customer training academy up to date. Make sure your user guide / help centre courses are updated as soon as or a bit prior to the new feature is launched.
- If it is a new feature, and you can relate it to a particular skill or enabling process, create a course or lesson about that – it will generate more awareness of the new feature and make it easier for your customer to adopt it and use it right off the bat.
- Keep your videos short and consistent in user guide or learning centre type courses. This way you can easily replace the specific video or videos of the features that underwent the changes, and easily add new features in the same format
TIP: It’s very helpful if your training platform allows you to easily replace a video keeping the same URL (this way, whoever has the link to the feature can always have the updated version, even when you make updates to it (you can this with bugle).
2. Have a plan
A Communication Plan to be more exact.
When you create a communication plan for your product, make sure to include specific “sub -plans” for recurring situations that the customers need to be told about.
– Let your customers know what’s going to happen in advance. Even if you don’t have a launch date yet, just let them know you are working on improving that feature or working on adding a new feature that will help your customers do something better / faster / more accurately… Always show the benefit for your customer.
- If you have invited a group of customers to test the new feature before launching to all (which is a great best practice), include their feedback when you communicate to all your client base before the feature activation.
- Send a reminder to your customers of the change the day before and the day of, motivate to test it out, and after that ask for feedback.
TIP: If you use a marketing automation platform, and know the date of the change, you can schedule all these emails in advance and make them automated. Using this type of tool is especially productive if you have a lot of product updates.
3. In-product info
Add a label of “new feature” with a link to the customer training video (that you have updated already) with an explanation of what’s new, and how to use it (both in case of new feature or a simple UX change).
The content you make available on your customer academy, user guide or help centre is key to how your customers will face this situation. Not just in terms of the content itself, but also the tone and approach you choose.
4. Just post it
If you have a blog and a social media presence, use these channels to let people know about the new features. Many of your clients are probably following you so, making this news public while explaining how it will benefit who uses your product, is a great way of getting your message across not just to your existing customers, but also to future ones.
Would you like to learn more about how bugle is a great solution for customer education?