Managing customers via your community


(Nick Emmett) #1

Do any of you guys actually manage groups of customers via your community? We have a model that sees customers with our basic level of support managed via our Community, rather than having a dedicated Customer Success Manager - I’m wondering if any of you guys do anything similar?

If so, what kind of tactics do you use to manage them, engage them and get the information to them that they need?


(Shreyas) #2

We’re in the business of running developer conferences, so our engagement is usually with:

  • people who’ve attended our conferences
  • people who want to connect with other developers

So, our products are our conferences and our community comprises of developers. For us, the developer ecosystem pushes us to keep ourselves updated so that we can show value to developers who purchase tickets for our conferences every year.

We try to mostly engage with our community offline with meetups, trainings, workshops, open houses etc. But apart from that, the online community is mostly developers asking questions and getting help from others, us making announcements and give them things that add value to them like discount codes to online courses/workshops etc.


(Sarah Hawk) #3

@Nick_Emmett this would be the perfect time to invite people from our Member Directory that say they work in product communities. You can do that using the invite feature:


(Nick Emmett) #4

Ooooh nice - watch me fly!
done - would be nicer if you could invite multiple people on the interface rather than one at a time - and even add a message. Next time I might try just @mentioning those people - totally forgot about the directory though, great prod :slight_smile:


(Travis King) #5

We could do a lot better in managing customer support via our forums. Currently, most of the answers are provided by moderators or helpful community members. Ideally, we would like help team members in the forums answering customer questions, but we don’t have the staff availability for that yet.


(Sarah Hawk) #6

This interests me. If you can cover those tasks off with superusers/mods, what is the benefit of using paid staff?


(Travis King) #7

A lot of the questions have to do with account issues which mods and user do not have access to. It would be great to have the space to offer some problem solving right from the forums other than a request to open a help ticket.


(Nick Emmett) #8

Agreed - we have similar things going on in that most questions asked are answered by other customer members, sometimes we need to people from our product/pro serv teams in, but sometimes it needs someone on the support team to handle it. they’re busy enough as it is so anything that can be handled in the discussion groups totally helps to take some pressure off them.

Where we have a challenge is that for our larger customers, and those that pay for our premium level of support, they get a dedicated Customer Success Manager, who checks in with them often, holds quarterly reviews of their licensing and usage, makes sure they’re using the most recent versions and connects them to our teams where necessary. For the smaller accounts though they don’t get that dedicated person and are handled by a team and via the Community - we have a group specifically for this group of customers but I’m not sure it’s being utilised effectively. I’ve often said that the small companies are the wrong demograph for self-service often as they are already multi-tasking in the office, where the CEO is often the accountant and project manager so genuinely struggles to find the time - wheras our larger customers have dedicated people handling the different roles there and aren’t spread as thin - we get a much higher turnout in the mid-market to enterprise customers than the smaller ones.