Getting internal engagement in your community can be challenging. Here are some onboarding tips to encourage internal teams to participate more in your Community.

Pro Tips:

  1. Share these tips using a Powerpoint presentation with fun graphics to make it less dry and more engaging
  2. Create a Powerpoint presentation for each team as each team has different needs.

Internal Team Onboarding Deck

Slide #1: Explain why you need the internal team in the community.

  • Knowledge that no one, but an internal team member, can answer
  • Customers respect it when a staff member responds to them
  • Best means for efficient and effective resolution

Slide #2: Share where the internal team can shine in your community

  • Share the link to a specific user group and/or discussion forum
  • Is there a place where users share feedback? Users would love to have their enhancement ideas acknowledged by an internal team member. It’ll make them feel really special!

Slide #3: The “What’s in it for me?” slide

  • How can the internal team benefit from internal-customer engagement?  Getting inside the mind of a customer/user is a great benefit.
  • Personal/career growth is a shoe-in to attract team members to participate.  Are there blogs/posts they can write that’ll showcase their expertise on a certain subject?

Slide #4: Explain how to engage with users/customers

  • This slide is meant to teach team members how to respond to your users.  Most people are afraid of engaging because they worry that they might look bad or they may make the company look bad.  Use this slide to alleviate their concerns.
  • Explain the result of certain responses and behaviors.
  • Explain how to manage difficult conversations.
  • Keep this slide short and simple to understand
  • High-level Example from my Powerpoint deck for our Engineering team:
    • Ask for clarification.  It’s ok to ask customers questions too!
    • Explain reasoning behind current design/timeline
    • Share specifics, but don’t be too specific (don’t share private information).
      • Result: Customer feels reassured simply by having an educated response.
  • Example of how to say “no” to customers (from my Engineering Team deck).
    • Sometimes it’s okay to say “No”…But is there a good way to say “No” to Customers?
      • Be Honest. Customers can tell when you are being insincere.
      • Empathize. Begin with a phrase of empathy – “I understand…I wish we could…”
      • Be Positive. Always end your response with something positive and express your appreciation/acknowledgement for sharing their concerns
      • Offer alternative solutions/workarounds.
      • Result: Even if customer is disappointed, they won’t feel like they wasted their time to write because their concerns were heard and listened to.

Slides #5-7: Provide 3 examples of existing posts from other team members.

  • Using the concepts from Slide #4, cover how the team member used each strategy to answer a user’s question
  • “Difficult Conversation” Examples I covered in my deck:
    1. Internal team member sharing bad news with a customer about delivery date
    2. User complaint and how the team member alleviated the user’s frustration
    3. User found a bug and the team member tried to solve the bug with a workaround. Turns out, it really was a bug that was being worked on by another internal team.

Slide #8: Provide you contact info for them to reach out to you

  • Be available should they have questions or need you to review their post responses.

Check out my slides here.