What is Customer Education and Why is Customer Education Important?
User education is an extremely important part of the customer journey for any company. Full stop. For product- and software-first companies, however, it’s more than that. For these companies, it’s the difference between profitability and going out of business.
Why? Because, despite the technological revolution, most products have learning curves, meaning that users — regardless of their experience — will need some guidance to get them realizing the full value of the product.
Let’s explore user education.
What’s User Education?
What’s user education? User education helps users (i,e., anyone using the product or piece of technology) take full advantage of it. Whether the customer needs help solving a problem or wants to gain a deeper understanding of a product, adequate user education is the key to providing them with a great experience. This is the purpose of user education.
What’s the Purpose of User Education?
So, what’s the purpose of user education? We’re glad you asked. The purpose of user education is to provide users with the knowledge and resources they need to use your product as intended. A level deeper, it can enable your sales teams, increase engagement and adoption, decrease time-to-value (TTV), align sales and marketing teams and generate organic growth.
Increase User Engagement and Product Adoption
The main purpose of user education is to increase engagement and product adoption. Without a robust user education program that’s presented in an approachable and digestible manner, people using your product won’t use it — or at least use it as intended.
Offering outstanding user education can also help your business improve product adoption. The product adoption curve is a visual representation of which customers are purchasing your products and when they’re purchasing them. Maintaining a user education program can improve the rate of product adoption by ensuring users are having great experiences with your products. When this happens, they’re more likely to use the product frequently and recommend it to others, accelerating product adoption and creating a favorable product adoption curve.
Regardless of the type of user you’re educating (e.g., customers, employees, channel partners or gig workers), they all want (and need) the same thing: See value as quickly as possible.
Said another way, they want the lowest TTV. This is why a user onboarding program that effectively onboards users is so important. A user onboarding program implemented at the beginning of their journey ensures they’re immediately learning — for example, you could provide new customers with a course that shows them how to activate their account and invite team members.
Not only does this help your users, but it’ll help your support teams, too. Because user education proactively provides users with the knowledge and resources they need to be successful, they’ll likely need less hand holding from these internal teams. This helps reduce strain on the customer support team.
Accelerate Organic Growth
User education content can not only improve the experience for people currently using your product, but it can also organically generate awareness and get other people interested.
Look at what HubSpot does with its academy. By making its content ungated, Hubspot has positioned itself to not only inform current customers with its learning materials but also attract new customers who are interested in achieving the results described. This way, your learning academy can work as a marketing tool as well as a customer education tool.
Align Sales and Marketing Teams
A high-quality user education program can also benefit your sales and marketing teams by bringing customer- and learner-centric data together. (Note: This requires you to integrate your LMS and CRM.)
A customer education platform like Northpass can enable you to combine your user education tools with your CRM, which can make it much easier for your sales and marketing teams to align with the goals of your user education program.
Enable your Sales Team
User education can benefit your sales team as much as it can benefit your users. Your sales reps can’t sell very effectively if they don’t understand the product themselves.
They need to have enough knowledge about the product to be able to convince customers, employees, channel partners or gig workers that they’ll get a lot of value from it.
Preferably, they should be experts who know your products and their features inside and out. Sales reps who are confident in their product knowledge can help instill that same confidence in the customers they sell to.
Reduce Support Tickets
Users who know how to use their products well and are fully equipped to solve problems when they arise will draw on fewer customer support resources throughout their lifecycle.
By investing in a thorough user education program up front, you can reduce the amount of time, effort, and money that must be allocated for solving users’ issues later on. Not to mention, the majority of your users prefer to be self-sufficient problem solvers as well. When you give your users access to high-quality training materials, everyone wins.
Train Internal Teams
User education isn’t just for external parties like customers and gig workers. It’s for employees, too. By providing your employees with the necessary resources and guidance, you’re ensuring — or dramatically increasing the chance — they’re successful in their roles.
Types Of User Education
User education isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. It’s more of a use-however-you-need-it solution, helping you achieve a variety of business outcomes.
Customer education is a strategy you can use to improve the customer experience, product engagement, retention, churn, and more through educational resources. Here’s a no-nonsense guide that covers it all. Keep reading to learn more.
Partner training is educational content and programs designed to teach partners the ins and outs of your product or service so that they can effectively sell it. In most cases, a partner is a reseller, service organization or consultant.
Employee training is an educational program that provides your employees with the knowledge and resources they need to succeed in their roles — now and in the future. An effective employee training program can increase employee retention, improve satisfaction, boost productivity, and ultimately increase your bottom line.
User education can provide gig workers with the knowledge and resources they need to succeed in their roles. An effective user education program can increase worker retention, improve satisfaction, boost productivity and ultimately increase your bottom line.
Northpass: Award-winning User Education Software
It should be obvious by now that user education is important. But, there are a lot of different options when it comes to deciding exactly how to create your user education program. It’s critical that you choose the right kind of approach for your business’s needs and your customers’ needs.
Northpass offers some of the best user education software on the market. Some of the most successful companies today use Northpass to create and organize robust training libraries for customers, employees, or any kind of user.
Northpass’ user training software makes it simple to upload product education content and deliver it to customers through a variety of channels.
Features like cloud hosting and support for multiple languages can give users the power to learn about products no matter where they’re located in the world.
Custom reports and analytics are available for business leaders to use to make improvements to customer education.
Customizable learning paths and certifications make it possible to give users a relevant and rewarding product education experience.