Last week I attended Adobe Summit. It was emotionally charged as I returned to a place that will forever have a piece of me. I met with old colleagues, learned from some great leaders, and met in real life with some long time social friends. We live in a world filled with businesses trying to create customer experience, but it was things that Shantanu Narayen and Reese Witherspoon said that really captured my attention.
Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen opened talking about how Adobe had transformed to the company it is now through continually looking for ways to create an experience with a customer. The move to a subscription model allowed Adobe to be able to innovate quicker and deploy innovations immediately vs. waiting to sell a boxed product every other year. Then he said “retention is the new growth”. He went on to talk about how they put a focus on retaining these customers with this innovation and a strong customer feedback loop to continue growth through retention of customers.
Its basic marketing 101, its cheaper and more effective to keep your existing customer base than it is to produce a new one. At CloudApp,we have seen enormous growth from basic word of mouth. No big fancy marketing budget, but a focus on deepening relationships with our existing base and expanding within.
It starts with building a great product, but evolves into capturing a community that will stick with you through bugs that are bound to happen, competitors who dangle a big discount, and shiny new options. The community of retention is what no only keeps your lights on, but is also what gets me to work every day.
Reese Witherspoon led a powerful conversation about being a woman leader and creating a business. She dropped business terms like empirical data, seed funding, SKUs, and nimble phrases that made every business person in the room get goosebumps. Then she laid out a phrase that captured the hearts of everyone from startups to fortune 500s. “If you don’t evolve, you expire… you die.”
That simple phrase cuts to the core fear of every business.Finding time to innovate during the noise of every day life.
At CloudApp we focus on a customer feedback loop to continually update and improve with each feature. We look for ways to integrate where our customers are working through partnerships with ZenDesk, Zapier,GitHub, Jira, and Adobe. Its crucial to always have ears wide open to understand what could take your product to the next level. You need to be able to think 5 steps ahead of where you customer needs you.
In a world moving towards video and productivity, CloudApp is on the forefront of an evolving market that has $100 Billion potential, but ultimately if we don’t focus on retention and evolve like Shantanu and Reese said we may expire.