For companies with subscription-based business models, customer turnover is the difference between survival and success. What’s troubling is that it’s often the quietest customers that are at risk of churn. Bluenose is a customer success platform that empowers SaaS businesses to proactively manage customers through complete visibility, a robust early warning system and built-in best practices. Founded in 2012, Bluenose is seeing strong interest from the market, with numerous major SaaS leaders signed on and strategic integrations with widely-used business applications like Salesforce, Marketo and Zendesk.
The Business Case for Community
Bluenose is in a unique position—a new company with a new product in a new market: Customer Success Management (CSM). Leadership decided early on to build an active online community for practitioners in this emerging profession. The goal was to support these pioneers and to push the CSM conversation forward—whether participants were Bluenose customers or not.
“In the past, sales professionals were always viewed as the heroes for generating revenue. But in the Subscription Economy, Customer Success Managers play an equally critical role because they are responsible for retaining and growing those customers,” said Bluenose’s community manager, Jaime Morocco. “Our Bluenose Customer Success Community gives these professionals a platform to speak about CSM and, at the same time, it keeps us very close to our customers’ and prospects’ evolving needs.”
The Community Effect
Vibrant, engaged community
Bluenose launched its CSM community in April 2014 and in just a few months the community continues to grow significantly in size and new content. Bluenose seeded the community with only a few conversations, giving members more control over the topics covered. The response has been significant and the discussions wide-ranging—from how to achieve early CSM success, to upselling and cross-selling tips, to advice on the best structure for a CSM team.
“Customer Success is a nascent space with limited resources for Customer Success Managers and leaders to conduct our daily jobs,” said Catherine Blackmore, Bluenose’s Chief Customer Officer. “The Customer Success Community is a place where leaders and individual contributors can interact and learn from one another and let discussion and new ideas come to life.”
Best practice sharing
The Bluenose team has been pleased with the interest in and contributions to the community thus far. Members stay in the Bluenose community for an average of four minutes, which is four times the average duration. “Members come to the community, they read and they give thoughtful responses,” said Morocco. “One post was so thorough that we asked the contributor if it could be converted to a blog post.” In another instance, the community was discussing the drivers behind Net Promoter Scores. Morocco reached out to a customer advocacy thought leader via Twitter and invited him to share his opinion in the community. He answered right away and a very valuable discussion unfolded. Not surprisingly, the Bluenose community content has also been widely-shared in the larger CSM industry.
Powerful user-generated content
User-generated community content ranks far higher in search engine queries, so Bluenose community interactions have been a great way to draw in future members interested in learning and sharing about CSM. “Search engines prioritize community content so the conversations taking place today will drive traffic to the community well into the future, unlike Facebook or Twitter postings which are more fleeting,” she explained.
Increased brand awareness
Bluenose reports a significant increase in brand awareness, which the company can attribute to its community. This has also led to a tremendous increase in site traffic and ultimately sales inquiries. “As a new company, brand awareness is paramount. Our team is made up of experts with decades of experience in customer success,” said Morocco. We want to be known for our thought leadership because we know it is a key differentiator. ”
Bluenose gained inspiration early on from Get Satisfaction’s wealth of content on how to create an engaging customer community. “The quality and quantity of information was valuable during our evaluation of community platforms and it helped to inform our decision,” said Morocco. “We’re doing the same thing.”
Get Satisfaction offers a refreshing alternative to the complex and expensive community platform software in the market, according to Morocco. “We didn’t need every bell and whistle, and the other options would have taken months to deploy.” Instead, Bluenose was up and running in a matter of weeks. Part of what made the implementation and ongoing management so simple, according to Morocco, was Get Satisfaction’s modern design platform. “I have been pleasantly surprised at how easy and intuitive it’s been for a non tech person like me to figure things out,” said Morocco.
Community as a differentiator
Bluenose ardently believes that when you bring people together around a common interest, great things happen. “Our CSM community is a strategic asset to our company,” said Morocco. “Through it, we’re elevating a new professional role that will be increasingly critical to SaaS companies and we’re cementing our position as a key player in this exciting field,” she added.
About Get Satisfaction
Based in San Francisco, Get Satisfaction provides an online community platform connecting companies with customers to foster relationships that unlock new value for both sides. Companies of all sizes and industries—from Kellogg’s, P&G and Intuit to Sonos, HootSuite and SugarCRM—rely on Get Satisfaction to deliver online communities that modernize customer support, accelerate sales, differentiate their brand and inspire new innovations. Get Satisfaction’s community platform offers the fastest time to value for companies ready to embrace the way today’s customers want to engage.
- Vibrant, engaged community designed for a target audience
- Best practice sharing in a brand new field
- Increased brand awareness and site traffic
- User-generated content that is highly SEO-optimized
- Up and running in weeks
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