A company thrives when it’s customers are satisfied. We firmly believe in this statement, which is why we have concierge onboarding for our online community software. The primary purpose of onboarding, in general, is to help you become comfortable with our platform and use it to your best advantage. Luckily, we've implemented concierge onboarding that ensures a smooth take off with our software.
Onboarding. Perhaps you’ve heard this term before but here's a short introduction in case you didn't! First and foremost, it’s an acclimatizing process that originated from the HR world:
Onboarding, also known as organizational socialization, refers to the mechanism through which new employees acquire the necessary knowledge, skills, and behaviors to become effective organizational members and insiders.
In the SaaS world, it basically works in the same way: onboarding introduces the ins and outs of a software to the customers (rather than a company to a new employee). Open Social is an open source software solution for online communities. It contains various flexible features and opportunities for personalization. A proper onboarding process means that the users of a product or service acquire the right set skills and knowledge to take advantage of these benefits.
Where to Start?
An onboarding process even before you step in to explain how your product works. The first step is to make a good and strong first impression, and this is largely dependant on the user experience (UX) of the software: Do customers intuitively understand where to start? How about what to do next?
“You will never get a second chance to make a first impression.” - Will Rogers
This quote is relevant for a lot of aspects of life, but it’s especially useful to understand the importance of introducing a new product/service to your customers. This first impression will set the scene for adoption and future growth.
In short, a platform should have a design that thinks ahead. This way customers can recognize the layout and basic functions without needing to do too much research themselves. The back-end design should also remain consistent to avoid confusion as the customers get to know your product.
However, not every function of the community platform can be understood without explanation. And that is where I come in: the onboarding concierge.
Concierge Onboarding Explained
This term can be explained fairly simply by using a concept you’re already familiar with: a hotel concierge. The concierge is usually found near the entrance of the hotel; ensuring that guests feel as comfortable as possible from the moment they arrive. Whether it’s a restaurant recommendation, adding a personalized note to the room, or even just a friendly smile - all will go a long way for the arriving guest. It may seem like hard work (and it often is) but the rewards are invaluable.
Open Social’s concierge concept works just the same. A concierge’s job is to attend to a customer’s or potential customer’s every need (within reason, of course). Do you have a question about the product? Would you like to understand how to use a feature? Maybe all you need is an explanation of how our product meets your primary needs. The concierge is designed to be there for you.
A concierge is assigned to a customer the moment they begin exploring Open Social. Even before you are a paying customer! As of that moment, there are two onboarding phases you will enter with the concierge.
1 Research Phase
Open Social offers a standard product, which means that a potential customer will benefit from an explanation of how the product fits their use case. We offer a 30-day free trial in which you can explore Open Social, but we also set-up demonstrations of the product. This is where we talk about the project/ use case and show what Open Social has to offer. Your concierge will stay in touch during these 30 days to answer questions you may have as you explore the product.
2 Implementation Phase
Once you decide to use Open Social as your community platform solution, we will continue to guide you. Your concierge will help you set up the platform and personalize it according to wants/needs. Open Social offers a lot of flexibility, meaning there is more than one way to set up a community. There are some key decisions to make and your concierge will help you with that. Some example decisions are:
- How will my users register for the community? What kind of sign up methods does Open Social offer?
- What content visibility should I have? What does that depend on? How are you going to make use of groups?
- How do I best use the built-in analytics functionality? What features already exist and which ones are being built?
The concierge service is already part of our basic and premium package. You can also receive community consultancy that acts not only as an onboarding concierge but ensures that you become an expert at managing your own community. We’re excited to help your community bloom!