Most business owners strive to be leaders in innovation. Yet, it can be difficult to get consumers on board with a new product or service that they’ve never seen before. Business owners have to constantly balance their resources to support customer acquisition and healthy growth, and customer education is a part of that equation. But many organizations are not taking customer education seriously. Here’s why customer education is a big deal for your brand.
What Is Customer Education?
In order to pursue an effective customer education program, you have to know what it is. Letting your customers know why they should drink from a reverse osmosis water filter isn’t the same as teaching them how to use a new set of tools in your software suite. Yet, both share a similar goal, and that is to build trust with consumers.
Around a decade ago, the landscape of consumer messaging changed drastically. As more and more people moved their everyday interactions online, businesses gained a new channel for instant and frequent communication. This opened up the possibility to create a new relationship with consumers, one that was based on knowledge, trust, and leadership. Customer education programs came about with these changes because businesses want to find ways to increase interaction with customers while providing useful educational content related to new products and services.
How Are Marketing and Customer Education Different?
Although many marketing teams end up taking on the task of customer education, these two things have marked differences. Where the end goal of marketing is to increase profits, that isn’t the case with customer education. The educational element here is what you have to pay attention to.
Education implies learning something. Unless you staff your marketing team with people who also have skills in developing curriculum and assessing learning goals, they might not be equipped to design educational programs and content. Your team may be able to achieve the basic aspects of customer education, such as introducing what a new product does or how a new service works. But there is always a risk that your customers will see through these attempts and recognize that it is just another marketing agenda.
If you want to make an impact in the customer education space, you need to hire a dedicated team of people who understand instructional design and high-quality learning experiences. That way, you will be able to truly reap the benefits of customer education for your business and your brand.
Why Customer Education Matters
As a business owner, you understand that today’s customers don’t just want to buy products, they want to feel like they have a relationship with the companies that take their money, which is why customer education matters. When you develop strong customer education initiatives, you create a foundation for long-term customer loyalty. Your customers will look to you as the thought leader in your industry, and they will continue to shop with you because they trust your platform.
Customer education programs can add massive value to your organization. You’ll likely save on costs related to answering customer support tickets, and you’ll have an easier time retaining customers after the onboarding stage. There are many ways to pursue customer education, but here are some popular options:
- Create a knowledge base that is easy to access
- Design a certificate program for essential skills
- Hold live training sessions online or in a hybrid format
- Introduce an E-learning platform with quality courses
Some of the biggest brands in the world use customer education to build community and grow their base. Customer education works in every industry. From the food and beverage industry to complex technical concepts, your customers are eager to learn whatever it is you want to teach them.
Make sure you understand how to utilize educational content to attract new customers. Whenever possible, dedicate the appropriate time and resources to your educational initiatives so that you end up with high-quality content that your customers will love.