Deirdre Breakenridge helps prepare your front line for handling different situations to better communicate with customers and serve their needs.
- You're well on your way to building a strong product strategy from your vision and messaging, to pricing and promotions, and how you develop your customer feedback loop. There's one critical part of your approach that can't be ignored. You have to prepare and work with your frontline on their customer interactions and customer communications. Having a product strategy in your go to market plan also means making sure your frontline employees fully understand this strategy. Your front line may include salespeople, customer service, and support teams.
These teams have direct access to customers that may want to learn more about products and enhancements. They also interact with customers who openly share praise and at times their complaints. For these reasons your go to market plan has to power up the frontline so they want to help customers and solve their problems. You also want to assure they share valuable customer feedback quickly. Your frontline should know just as much as the marketing and product teams, as well as the executives who were responsible for signing off on the launch plans.
What your frontline knows and believes about the product vision, and how they communicate the product attributes will not only support your product strategy, but also keep customers happy. The key to frontline product success is building customer advocacy by communicating more internally. You have to get your frontline involved and trained on every aspect of your product strategy. It's not enough to just share the outcome of your planning. You may also want to involve them in your development phases, gather their input, and brainstorm with them on how to create better customer experiences through their direct or indirect communications.
But, how do you know if your frontline is ready for product launch? The best way to determine their readiness is to include a frontline ready checklist in your go to market plan. A frontline that is empowered and engaged will, number one, know the target customer, their interests, needs, and values. With a clear understanding, they'll be poised to communicate future product opportunities that occur during their interactions.
Number two, fully embrace the product vision. Visualize how the product roadmap and key product attributes will benefit customers based on their in-depth knowledge. Number three, communicate the product benefits effectively to position the product uniquely as compared to competitors in the market. Number four, believe in customer intimacy and use every interaction as a way to listen, help, and offer information as they strive to exceed expectations and fuel customer advocacy.
Number five, identify what makes the best customer interactions, and then figure out if there is any direct increase in advocacy as a result. A frontline that's empowered and engaged will also understand the value of customer feedback. They'll quickly report and share the information with other teams on behalf of their customers. Creating the product strategy with a strong product vision and roadmap needs your frontline. When your frontline is not able to effectively and efficiently communicate with your customers, your strategy will fall short.
Get your frontline ready for a new product launch.
- Building your go-to-market (GTM) plan foundation
- Assessing whether you need a marketing or GTM plan
- Entering new markets with a competitive advantage
- Developing your product vision and message
- Setting your product price at launch
- Setting up your channel strategy
- Driving better channel performance
- Evaluating KPIs and metrics
- Storytelling and the customer journey