You’ve launched a new software solution to your team, department, or entire company, and thanks to a thoughtful implementation strategy, initial engagement with the new technology is high. Cheers to a job well done!
But once the initial excitement wears off, how do you make sure people keep using the software on a regular basis? Changing behavior is hard, and without a strategy for ongoing engagement, you risk people going back to the old ways of doing things, simply because that’s what they’ve always known.
We think a lot about the importance of encouraging ongoing software engagement at Bloomfire because we want to see our customers be successful with our knowledge management platform. We regularly work with our customers to help them maximize the value of their Bloomfire usage, and our product stickiness rate is more than double the SaaS industry average.
We’ve put together a list of six tactics you can use to keep your software engagement high based on what we’ve seen work well for our customers. Check out the tips and corresponding infographic below.
1. Find Influencers Who Can Show the Value
83% of buyers say that word-of-mouth recommendations influence their purchasing decisions, and this word-of-mouth phenomenon can carry over to influencing behavior in the workplace too.
Start by identifying influencers from different teams who can help promote the value of your new technology. These influencers should be people who are already using the software frequently and understand how using it contributes to company goals and their personal success.
Once you’ve found your influencers, meet with them regularly to get their feedback on the software. The more they’re being heard, the more invested they’ll feel in the success of the platform, and the more likely they are to champion it within and across their teams. Plus when you bring together a group of influencers, they’ll have opportunities to learn from each other and get inspired to use the technology in new ways.
2. Segment and Tailor Communications
Here’s another statistic from the world of marketing that’s relevant to your technology engagement strategy: 90% of consumers say they find personalized marketing content appealing. That preference for personalization carries over into people’s work lives, and tailoring your new software to different users can help keep people engaged.
One way Bloomfire users personalize and segment communications is by adding users’ roles and interests to their profile. This helps them curate the content that will be most relevant for different segments, encouraging users to keep returning to the knowledge management platform to find the information that matters most to them.
Bloomfire also allows users to create custom content feeds based on the criteria of their choice, such as keyword, category, and contributor. All users can create individual feeds, and managers with platform admin privileges can create feeds to share with their team members. This helps everyone avoid information overload and hone in on the content that best aligns with their role and interests.
3. Create Social Proof
People are more likely to see the value of your new technology when you can point to real success stories. Make sure you’re sharing anecdotes about how specific software usage supported a goal and made an impact for the company. For example, some Bloomfire customers give shout-outs in team or company meetings to employees who have shared valuable knowledge or leveraged the knowledge of others in innovative or efficient ways.
Bloomfire also provides built-in engagement analytics so our customers can connect data to their story. For example, they might share how much content consumption has increased month over month, highlight the most-read pieces of content for the quarter, or show how the average time it takes to get an answer to a question has decreased.
4. Make Things Interesting With Gamification
If friendly competition is a part of your department or company culture, gamification can be a useful tool to encourage employees to use new technology. Bloomfire offers leaderboards that allow users to see who is contributing the most content, who is contributing the content with the most views and interactions, and who is consuming the most content. Rewarding top performers in these categories on a monthly or quarterly basis can help incentivize people to engage with the platform until it becomes a normal part of their routine.
When it comes to the specific rewards, get creative, and choose something that fits with your company culture or industry. For example, one of our customers in the travel industry regularly rewards their top users with plane tickets to a destination of their choice.
5. Establish Pathways for Feedback
Remember how we mentioned that your internal influencers will feel more invested in your new technology when you take their feedback seriously? The same applies for the rest of your software users.
Since your end users are the ones engaging with this technology on a regular basis, it’s important that they have a say on how they are using it. One way we’ve seen some of our customers empower their end users is by allowing them to submit content requests inside the platform. From there, the knowledge management or content creation team can determine how to prioritize the request. If they decide not to prioritize the request, they explain why and encourage their end users to continue sharing their feedback and ideas. When the team does publish new content based on a request or piece of feedback, they acknowledge both the content creator and the requestor for their contributions so everyone who uses the platform knows they can make a difference too.
6. Make the Benefits Tangible
You rolled out a new technology because you recognized that it would benefit your organization–and it should benefit employees in tangible ways too. Make sure employees understand those benefits and are feeling them in their daily work.
For example, one of the common benefits we see with Bloomfire is significant time savings. It’s not uncommon for our customers to report saving an average of two hours per employee per week simply by reducing the time it takes for people to search for the information to do their jobs.
One creative way to reward employees for sharing and engaging with company knowledge–and, by extension, saving the company time–is to give them extra time back. Top contributors or highly engaged employees might be rewarded with an extra day of paid time off. This type of reward drives home the value of knowledge engagement and makes the benefits that much more real for employees.
Build a Culture of Knowledge Engagement
By focusing on engagement after launching your new technology, you can maximize your return on investment. Ongoing engagement with a platform like Bloomfire can help build or strengthen a company culture that encourages people to share what they know and tap into the knowledge of their coworkers. And when everyone can easily find and share knowledge, you’ll see efficiency gains and a better employee experience: a win for your organization and its people.