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Creating a new product or service takes tremendous effort. Years are spent towards the development of utility technology. Modern life has been reshaped by such technology — the way we live, work and play are influenced by the products we use. Software applications have found their way into every niche of life. Even gardening or yoga, until recently free of technology, have apps built to serve the purpose of knowledge sharing or motivation.
But what happens when the consumer market isn’t primed for the next best thing, i.e., your product? This is why user manuals exist and have been around longer than you would expect. Despite their prevalence, user manuals/training documentation regularly go unread. Poorly written instructions or a bland mode of learning are the usual suspects.
The following article is a summary of the Craig Weiss webinar titled “Are LXPs Suited to Provide Customer Training?”, watch here.
Customer training is especially important for technology, software and subscription-based businesses. The “State of Education Services: 2017” report by Technology Services Industry Association (TSIA) shows that companies with trained customers experience a 92% renewal rate in contrast to an 80% renewal rate for companies who have untrained customers. Customer training offers many advantages, such as reduced calls to customer support/service, loyalty for the product and company and perhaps most importantly, it allows teaching customers how to get the most out of your product. Offering training post-sales can lead to better engagement and improves the lifecycle and relationship between the product and customer.
Simplicity is the key to reduce user fatigue. LXPs are designed with a form over function approach. The users aren’t on the platform to appreciate aesthetics but to obtain utility. This is a core tenet. An intuitive UI is important if not, valuable time that could be spent learning will instead be spent getting used to the platform.
“Enable the customer to choose what they want to learn”
Origin Fractal employs a three-pronged approach to a great User Experience: Learner-first, mobile-first and fun-to-use (gamification).
Learner-first puts the learner’s unique needs and circumstances at the forefront. This means courses are tailored to the traits of the learner. Additional training content can be added as per the interests of the users.
A mobile-first approach means unlike traditional learning systems, an LXP is a product designed from the mobile-end and adapted to tablets or desktop. This ensures a remote workforce is rewarded with seamless instances of learning that can be deployed anywhere, as per the user’s needs.
Carefully curated content, organized with relevance for that particular user, also gives LXPs an edge over traditional learning management systems.
In 2015, the millennial generation overtook GenX as the larger contributor to the global workforce. The current generation of learners are overwhelmed with a lot of information, we spend more of our day online than ever before. Especially at the time of this article, during the global COVID-19 pandemic, the amount of time spent looking at screens is at an all-time-high. Multitasking and being distraction-prone has become common. Committing to long training modules isn’t attractive anymore. LXPs address this by incorporating microlearning, Which has been shown to increase uptake significantly, up to 18%.
“Customer training is a revenue generator, it is a perk or a benefit.”
Microlearning consists of small instances of learning that improve performance and development. This can be achieved using gamification, which incentivizes learning and has been proven an effective method of knowledge assimilation. It is especially useful when the user needs help with a specific task or function. This mode of learning is short and to the point, based on a specific topic and easily searched by asking a question, either through text or voice-commands or a keyword search. From a neurological point of view, studies have shown microlearning aids long-term retention while mitigating short-term overload.
For a business, quantifiable metrics of customer training can be very important. This will dictate decisions regarding learning and development and the value it adds to customers and the organization. Insights about what customers spend more time learning for a product can prove invaluable. The usability of the product, as well as the preferences of a consumer, become easier to understand with the analytical capabilities of LXPs. Combined with the ability of LXPs to be integrated with other modern technologies such as the Learning Record Store (LRS) for xAPI, this serves as a powerful tool for understanding user experience with the product.
LXPs can help take this data into actionable objectives by combining customer learning data with operational data such as sales, technology and customer success. Technologies such as xAPI aso enable mobile-first approach to learning and development as a dedicated web browser no longer becomes necessary to track important data.
VILT is the gold-standard of learning and development programs. Studies indicate that extended enterprise training for customers and partners can have up to 80% usage rate, according to a Brandon Hall report. Unlike other online learning methods, there is a higher probability for learning objectives to be completed while in an instructor-led setting.
This mode of customer training is particularly useful for companies with complex products. VILT offers an effective means of delivering customer training, as it allows active feedback, questions, and answers. On an LXP, additional content can be easily assimilated by way of user conferences and learning modules. It creates a community of learning for your customers through your products, encouraging loyalty and brand trust.
The Brandon Hall Extended Enterprise 2017 survey shows 56% of companies find extended enterprise learning efforts are effective or very effective for the overall value of the product offered. LXPs are the future of learning and development. Customer Training has come a long way since the time of User Manuals. Products have become complex and training needs have evolved along with it.
Effective customer training can lead to increased revenue, both directly and indirectly. When executed well, the value provided by customer training can increase customer loyalty, a useful health indicator of a product or service-based business. Customers who feel they are able to get most of the product will be more likely to renew their lease or choose other services of a company. The possibility of selling subscription-based training to your customers can open new streams of recurring revenue.
Find out how Fractal LXP can help push your business forward by signing up for a demo.
Watch the webinar here.