Product feedback series #2 – Constant client feedback is vital for product evolution

Let’s get rid of the word “customer”.

No, seriously, hear us out. We’ve banned the word in our offices. The people we work with are always exactly that – people we work with. Customers are people you sell to, clients are partners.

When working with B2B, the client angle allows you to improve your product, the customer angle makes you stuck in your ways.

We’ll explain.

Option A – Product > Customer

The product to customer model goes like this:

  1. Your company creates a product that can solve a problem.
  2. You sell that product to customers.
  3. Repeat.

Option B – Product > Client > Product

The product to client and then back to product model is a different way of approaching things:

  1. Your company creates a product that can solve a problem.
  2. You generate feedback through clients to improve the product.
  3. You create a product that can solve a better problem.
  4. Repeat.

In every scenario, option B is better. Through feedback you’re able to improve your product and create a better experience for everyone. Take the humble iPhone. When Apple release a new version the company doesn’t just send it out and then take a step back until the next version is ready. They listen to their users and create updates to fix bugs and improve the user experience.

It shouldn’t be any different in a B2B situation.

We’re talking from experience…

In the early stages of Wisembly Georges-Edouard Dias, Chief Digital Officer at L’Oreal Europe, spotted our software and decided to help us adapt it so we could work with larger firms. We developed the product further and L’Oreal became our first client. Now we’re a SME that works with more than 400 large corporations every day.

Valuable, actionable feedback was vital for us in the early stages of our product development but that doesn’t mean it should stop there. Product development should be happening constantly.

Working with clients (remember, not customers) through regular meetings and discussions allows for product evolution, and makes sure your offering continues to appeal. And this is something every company, from the smallest startup, to a huge corporation can do.

Our tips for product feedback direct from clients:

#1: Build a team:

We have a huge team dedicated to collecting feedback from our clientele and then translating that into developing our products. Within that team we have mini teams of client success managers, project managers and developers.

They all work together to make sure we’re a client centric company, led by the needs of the people we work with, instead of just giving them something we assume they might like.

#2: Get talking:

To get feedback you need to talk to your clients. Our client success managers answer questions asked by clients on a daily basis, either via live chat, calls, emails. They create the knowledge base and run weekly webinars to help new clients set up Wisembly. This allows our team to generate immediate feedback at the early stages of product-use.

Our project managers are ready to go on location if the client needs help, and talk with them directly. Communication and development are key to avoid your product or service stagnating. Don’t just offer support, use these communications to generate actionable feedback about the product itself.

#3: Repeat:

Every client loves your product for one reason or another. So keep working to improve it through your clients. Over time the needs of your clients will change, so keep the conversation going to see how your product can continue to solve a problem. And always remember, don’t sell… serve.

Creating a product that stands the test of time is no mean feat, especially in innovative sectors such as tech. But by using this model we know we’ve created a product that’s constantly evolving, is focussed on client expectations and will continue to be relevant for many years to come.

Comments

Leave a Reply