We've had huge success using Jive's Ideation Module to involve customers in our Product Development Process. It's helped us apply the experiences and creativity of our users to improve our offerings. It's given our Product Team a better understanding of what are customers are looking for, and it's given our customers a deeper sense of engagement in our product efforts and our future. The result is stronger innovation and stronger customer relationships.

 

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WHY DID WE DO IT?

 

Spredfast helps huge brands and company's worldwide connect to the people that they care about on Social Media and through our platform. We also pride ourselves on being the most OPEN platform in the Social Space. With that, we want out Product and Development Teams to have an OPEN relationship with our Customer base and therefore have our customers play a significant role in how we innovate moving forward.

 

In the past we had no real effective way of making that happen. Like many Tech company's, we received enhancements requests from individual customers and we did our very best to accommodate them. However, the process that we had could have been more efficient and sometimes meant that we had many enhancements untouched. There was no systematic way to gather and aggregate inputs from across the customer base in this way and respond to them in a timely manner.

 

 

 

WHAT DID WE DO?

 

Back in June 2016 we re-launched our Jive-Powered Customer Community, we we re-branded as Spredfast Connect. It provides one place where customers can learn about our products, technology, market and to connect with the best minds in social to share their expertise and experiences. This is their Social Success Hub.

 

One major objective of the re-vamped community was to provide a better way for customers to contribute Product Ideas. Before implementing a solution, I spoke with many different Community Managers. Their feedback was:

 

"Many Community's have a Product Idea's section. The issue is that when people enter an idea there, it drops into a Black Hole. Company's only offer this to make you think that you have a say on innovation, when by in large you do not"

 

We planned diligently to avoid that scenario. Instead, we designed an internal process that ensure that customers are heard and that every single idea that is left in Connect is responded to by a Product Manager and considered for future release. We always make sure that this communication loop is either closed or continued at all times.

 

 

 

HOW DID WE DO IT?

 

Using Jive's Ideation Module, customers can easily submit ideas for new features or functionality that they'd like to see implemented. They can also vote on each other's ideas, helping us identify the most popular and promising concepts.

 

Once idea's are captured, they're sent to our JIRA based Internal Enhancements system, which is also includes a comprehensive labelling strategy indicating their popularity. Each submission is then symbolically linked to each idea which is assigned to a Product Manager.

 

Once this has been opened, the Product Manager will then reach out to the customer, have a discussion around the use case and detail what the next steps are. Has this been placed on the roadmap? Will it be? Or gather more detail about your Business case and why this feature is so important to your day to day to get a better understanding. The important thing here is that every single time a Product Idea is submitted, it gets the attention of the Community and Product Manager and the customer gets a response.

 

 

 

WHAT SUCCESS HAVE WE SEEN?

 

We have had fantastic success since implementing this new initiative:

 

- We've seen a huge reduction in our response backlog. The % of feature requests unanswerd has dropped from 85% to 8%

 

- 42% of ideas submitted in Spredfast Connect have either been released into our products or placed on our Product Roadmap (Plan to be released). This is up from 7% since the launch.

 

More generally, the ability to harness the brainpower and inspiration of our customer base is helping us deliver more and more. It is also demonstrating our commitment to listen and to respond to feedback from our customers. This offers us great differentiation in our market.

 

The feedback from our customers has also been overwhelmingly positive, with many expressing how refreshing it is to have their voices and feedback delivered in physical implementations.