Why every company needs a Customer Advisory Board (CAB) & how to run a successful CAB
A Customer Advisory Board (CAB) provides valuable insights from customers to inform product development and decision-making.
Launching and maintaining an effective CABs also directly contributes to the success of a company by fostering stronger relationships between company management and customers, leading to increased customer loyalty and advocacy.
However, many CABs fail due to the lack of a technology platform, which limits their ability to effectively engage and collaborate with customers, specially in today’s hybrid work environment. This can lead to low attendance and lackluster results.
Utilizing a technology platform, such as Weavr, can greatly enhance the CAB experience and increase participation. Weavr provides tools for personalized onboarding, customer advisory showcases, CAB cohorts, and overall management.
Steps for a successful CAB
Define the goals for your Customer Advisory Board
Just like any major initiative, goal setting is of paramount importance.
- To begin with, it is essential to set clear and attainable goals for your Customer Advisory Board (CAB). These goals will provide a roadmap for your CAB activities and help you measure success.
- Consider your company’s objectives and what you hope to achieve through your CAB. Examples of goals could include improving customer satisfaction, gathering feedback on new product features, or increasing customer engagement.
Define time commitment & compensation, if any
Once you’ve established your goals, it’s time to define the terms of your CAB. Determine how often you will hold meetings, how long they will last, and if you will offer any compensation for participating. This will help you attract high-quality participants and ensure that everyone is on the same page.
Create an online VIP CAB customer community
To make your CAB a success, it’s essential to make it an exclusive VIP community of hand picked customers. To do this, create a customer community specifically for your CAB participants and your leadership team.
Use Weavr’s custom subdomain to create an exclusive subdomain e.g. cab.<yourcompany>.com.
Leverage the no-code website tools on Weavr Cafe to create a beautiful website for your Customer Advisory Board or make it private.
Enable channels inside the community based on your preference e.g Introductions &Announcements.
Create CAB cohorts and invite customers
- To make the process of selecting your CAB members more manageable, consider dividing them into cohorts based on common characteristics, such as industry, company size, or product usage. This could be achieved online by using sub-groups on Weavr.
- Once you have identified your CAB members, reach out to them to invite them to participate. Provide clear information about the CAB’s objectives, the benefits of participating, and what will be expected of them.
Create a template to send personalized emails and make the on-boarding process delightful, so that customers feel valued and excited to be a part of the initiative.
Create in-person or virtual events
Define an agenda for your CAB meetings and create beautiful events using Group sessions on Weavr. Run in-person meetings or virtual sessions on platforms such as Zoom or Google Meet.
- Avoid asking leading questions that might influence the response. Instead, use open-ended questions that encourage members to share their thoughts and experiences freely.
- Examples of questions to ask could include “What challenges are you facing in your business?”, “What do you think about our latest product release?” or “What do you think we could be doing better?”
Create resources on an ongoing basis
After each meeting, summarize the notes and add them as a resource for your CAB participants. Categorize the resources and add other helpful resources, such as reports or presentations, to keep participants engaged and informed.
Use tools for pre and post event engagement
Take advantage of built-in community tools in Weavr Cafe, such as ‘Q&A, Get Help’, to engage with your participants before and after each meeting.
Weavr is integrated with Slack. Request CAB participants to connect their slack so they get updates from your CAB in their preferred Slack workspace. This will help keep everyone connected and foster a sense of community.
Share your action plan based on the feedback
After each meeting, take the feedback you’ve received and use it to create an action plan. Share this plan with your participants, so they know you’re taking their feedback seriously.
Use CAB as a platform to share product updates
Finally, use your CAB as a platform to share product updates with your customers. The Announcement channel is a great way to share these updates. This will help keep them informed and engaged and foster a sense of trust and loyalty
Conclusion: Building a successful Customer Advisory Board needs a clear strategy, a solid technology platform and the desire to genuinely engage and learn from the customers. By following these steps, you can create an effective CAB that provides valuable insights, fosters stronger relationships with customers, and drives business success.