By Leslie Karr, Vice President of Customer Success, Resonate
As brand and marketing leaders, many of us are racing to adapt to the unprecedented challenges brought on by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. While many sectors of business are expected to rebound in the coming months, industries will undoubtedly be coping with the effects of this downturn for years to come.
In times like these, all eyes naturally turn to find efficiencies within organizations, and many of those efficiencies can be found by doing more with what you have.
For many brands, this will mean looking at existing resources—most notably, technology platform investments—and ensuring they are being leveraged to the benefit of all departments, not just marketing.
In particular, intelligence platforms designed to increase an organization’s understanding of customers will be key, as authentic connections to consumers will continue to be more important than ever across organizations, from product development to customer service.
For those leaders tasked with driving the adoption of customer intelligence and other platforms across their organizations, here are some guidelines for success.
Make a Plan and Allocate Time
First things first: Driving platform adoption across an enterprise isn’t for the faint of heart. When you’re excited about the potential of a tool or source of insights for your company, it’s natural to assume that others will be as well—but it’s not always that simple.
Adopting new platforms requires process change, and people are naturally resistant to change, especially when it comes to how they do their jobs. Before you go out into your organization to champion a platform, recognize that adoption will be a journey. Also, recognize that driving adoption isn’t a side project for you—it’s a core part of your job, and one that requires a plan.
As you formulate your plan for bringing a new platform to the various departments of your company, don’t prep a one-size-fits-all presentation. Set aside time to think through the value that the platform will deliver to each stakeholder and tailor your approach accordingly.
Talk to colleagues and ensure you understand the value that the tool can bring to their roles before you try to sell them on it.
Be Evangelical—and Leverage Evangelists
As you champion platform adoption across your organization, your enthusiasm will speak volumes—but your enthusiasm alone might not be enough. What you really want are other champions who can work alongside you as you integrate the platform into everyday workflows.
In this regard, don’t forget to seek out an obvious resource: the platform vendor itself. These companies are typically happy to allocate their experts’ time and expertise to help you find greater success with their tools.
Also, make it a priority to identify and recruit internal champions as you go. Be active in soliciting feedback from teams that are using the platform, and orient your efforts around success metrics that are meaningful to each team.
For example, you might love a tool because of the depth of insights you can get on customers and prospects, but the insights themselves aren’t what will speak to team members. Tap into campaign metrics, customer satisfaction scores, sales team wins and any other quantifiable feedback you can find that can speak to what success really looks like when a given platform is adopted.
Build Champions at All Levels
Finally, don’t underestimate how important it is to have allies and champions of your efforts at all levels of your organization. At the end of the day, you need buy-in from both C-level executives and day-to-day, in-the-trenches employees.
If you focus your efforts on persuading and educating just one tier, adoption will ultimately fall short.
When it comes to day-to-day efforts, be sure to roll up your sleeves and understand how a given platform can fit into or augment existing workflows. At the C-level, be sure you can talk about the bottom-line impact and quantifiable efficiencies.
In both cases, you’ll know you’re making real progress when you start hearing increased demand for usage of the platform. Initial successes breed passion among execs and employees alike, so look for those early wins—and whatever you do, don’t keep them to yourself.