The Importance of Knowing--and Listening To--Your CustomerBuilding a good product that works is not enough to create happy customers.  The concept of  “end-to-end customer experience” is often discussed, but is very hard to deliver.  To deliver on the promise, the marketing, sales, fulfillment, product and support teams all need to work together with the same vision of what the customer expects.  An example of the importance of understanding all of the pieces is our recent donation of DriveSharp to Massachusetts public libraries in conjunction with AAA.

The objective is to provide patrons of libraries with access to our software.  Before we committed to the program we recognized that we had to satisfy two different customers, both the patron (who would wind up using the program) and the library staff (who had to provide the program to the patrons).  We called multiple libraries to find out ways to help them make the process as easy as possible and wound up with two options: either install the program on computers in the library or check-out the product to patrons as they would other media.  We also  involved AAA to help with the process of providing license codes, training materials and descriptions of the program so that library staff could tell patrons they had it and what DriveSharp does.

We launched in November and the AAA of Southern New England has been rolling out the program to libraries across Massachusetts.  Last week we saw a blog posting from Brian Herzog, a librarian in Massachusetts, who suggested ways we could improve and ensure the full value of the donated software was realized.  As an aside, another important concept in delivering great customer experiences is to have listening posts so you can gather feedback and then respond.  I called Brian to make sure we understood the feedback, that he knew what resources were available to him and looped in the AAA team.  We decided not to make any changes to the donation program but have made the materials that explain to libraries how it works and best practices more accessible on our on-line forum.

If you have feedback for me (positive or negative), please use our contact page .  Our team will respond.