Updated: Jan 26
When it comes to onboarding new customers, it's essential to remember that first impressions count! A smooth and efficient onboarding process sets the tone for the entire customer journey and can make all the difference in building long-term relationships.
Today, as companies are trying to do more with less and resources are limited, it becomes even more critical to plan out the customer experience from start to finish, requiring a holistic approach to onboarding.
It's important to focus not only on the technical aspects of setting up a new account, but also on building a personal connection with our customers. A personalized onboarding experience, tailored to the unique needs of each customer, will lead to greater satisfaction and loyalty.
Automation is key for scalability but Onboarding cannot become “one size fits all”.
So how do you create automated sequences without losing the personalized onboarding experience?
Utilize data to define Customer Personas. Go beyond segmentation by industries or by ARR and focus on the individual personas for the onboarding and potentially ongoing customer journey:
Who are the stakeholders that need to be onboarded (It may be an operations manager, the recruiting team, an executive)? Different stakeholders will have different needs from your platform.
Why is your platform important to them? Each persona may have a different goal or action they want to achieve by using your platform (past the overall goal of the company).
Which part(s) of the platform will each type of persona within a company utilize? Some will require training on execution through the platform while others will only want training on data and reporting.
Define personalized journeys and sequences to welcome and explain the onboarding process to each of your personas. Make sure the journey you create for each persona is in line with their interests and needs! Focus on their immediate needs to ensure they start working with your platform ASAP. The Goal here is to minimize time to value (the time it takes your persona to see value from your platform). Later you should introduce additional features that are either "nice to haves" or promote customer stickiness with your platform.
Give your customers choices by setting up learning Academies or Libraries filled with resources that your customers can choose from based on their individual needs and to which they can continuously refer back to as they progress in their usage of your platform. Organize clearly by labeling sections based on onboarding stages, topics, goals, personas and/or features.
Keep the process simple and clear! Define a flow that each of your personas can easily follow and create onboarding resources (blogs, knowledge-based articles, videos, etc.) in a way that anyone can understand. Don’t overwhelm your customers by providing too many scattered resources.
Share Best Practices, FAQs and Success Stories that are relevant to each Persona- There is nothing like a good old FOMO campaign to get customers moving. No one wants to re-invent the wheel. Customers would much rather iterate and improve on things that have proven to work for others. Make sure they know the outcomes they can expect from the onboarding process.
Check yourself! Make sure each persona has everything they need to get started. Pro-tip: ask a new team member or employee to go through the onboarding process. Do they understand how to use the platform? Do they feel comfortable with the different features? What questions do they have? What would cause them to feel more confident in using your platform? If something is unclear to them, you can bet it will be unclear to your customers.
Provide a Contact for Support so that your customers know who they can turn to for help or if they have any questions.