Case Study: Nurture for Adoption Of Key Features And To Strengthen Customer Engagement And ROI

The Best Practice

Subscription businesses strive for consistent engagement from their customers. But while consistency is important to a customer’s success, solely focusing on this metric can mask other telling (and potentially troubling) patterns, particularly around failure to use core, sticky features.

Smart customer success teams know certain features have the highest correlation to strong ROI and higher retention. They center their engagements – both one‐to‐one and automated – around these features, communicating the benefits to the customer as a means to spark interest and eventual use.

What iContact Did

North Carolina ‐based iContact helps small and medium businesses with their email marketing needs. Their knowledgeable customer‐facing teams are one of the company’s strongest assets, setting them apart from many of their competitors.

For its new marketing automation solution, iContact developed a personalized onboarding process. But after the first year of the product’s launch, they realized that some customers – all of whom were properly onboarded – were not taking advantage of some of the solution’s most valuable features. These customers, while technically happy and consistently using the product, were not achieving maximum ROI.

iContact’s account management team tackled this problem with data and automation. They identified their highest ROI features and developed automated plays that:

  • Isolated the customers who were not using the feature, both recently and ever,
  • Delivered benefits‐focused content to these customers, both inside their application and via email,
  • Scheduled necessary follow‐up tasks with their account managers for additional benefits discussions and one‐on‐one trainings, and
  • Tracked how effective the automated content was at increasing use of their core features.

iContact is building a library of automated plays for all their features, gently but consistently nurturing their customers towards healthy usage and maximum ROI.

How You Can Start 

Creating automated nurture campaigns may feel daunting because of the scope of features and the challenge of creating compelling content. So start small, focusing only on your stickiest 2‐3 features. Then, like iContact, work towards creating content that will naturally inpsire usage:

  • Make sure all content is centered the benefits to the customer,
  • Offer varied educational materials (videos, tutorials, and blog posts),
  • If possible, include opportunities for one‐one‐one engagement, and
  • Track the effectiveness of your efforts, i.e. % of customers that started using.

Having a platform designed to segment your customers and automatically run campaigns may be helpful or even necessary. But if you don’t have such a solution available, don’t give up! Experiment with these steps manually and you may be able to justify further investment.

“Working with SMB customers to adopt technology can be time‐consuming. With automation, my team is more productive, won’t miss opportunities, and our customers are getting the benefit of deep engagement with our product.”

Caitlin Wood, Manager of Account Sales | iContact