How Guru handled 179% increase in conversations with ease
With Anne Raimondi, Chief Customer Officer, and June Zhang, Technical Support Manager
The team at Guru is on a mission to help teams break down organizational silos through better knowledge management. Using Intercom to create a customer experience that helps their team engage and support users in a genuinely personal way is core to their strategy.
Since its early days, Guru has relied on Intercom to power its communications with customers like Shopify, Invision, Slack, Spotify, and more. More recently, the team has used the tool to scale its support after launching Guru Starter, a free version of its platform. Using Intercom, the team’s been able to support close to 900 monthly conversations with ease while maintaining an incredibly impressive 95% CSAT score.
“Creating exceptional customer experiences is central to Guru's mission. One of our core values is to 'create advocates' through all of our customer interactions. Intercom enables us to stay connected to our customers in personalized and impactful ways.”
Modernizing customer support
Impersonal support tools don’t cut it when you’re building a product that is trying to instill better collaboration within organizations. From the start, Guru was drawn to Intercom for its modern design and its conversational approach to support. Customers can use the Intercom Messenger at any time and on any page to chat with the Guru team. The team believes so strongly in chat as a format of communication that it’s the only way for customers to contact the support team.
But using chat doesn’t necessarily mean you’re actually delivering a personal customer experience. Users are all too familiar with the experience of waiting in a chat queue and speaking with an anonymous support rep. Intercom helps the Guru team deliver a chat experience that genuinely feels personal and reflects the company value of not taking itself too seriously. Customers can see profile photos of the team within the Messenger. The team can liberally use emojis and gifs in conversations to express themselves.
Guru also believes in providing a customer experience where customers feel like they’re being treated as co-workers. Anne Raimondi, Guru's Chief Customer Officer, thinks about it in terms of customer advocacy. She says, “Creating exceptional customer experiences is central to Guru's mission. One of our core values is to 'create advocates' through all of our customer interactions."
This value comes to life through the proactive support that the Guru team offer. When product issues come up, the team uses Intercom’s outbound messaging to preemptively alert customers and assure them that a fix is on the way. Integrations like Statuspage within the Messenger also help customers easily see if the product is experiencing rare downtime or outage. Anne says, "Intercom enables us to stay connected to our customers in personalized and impactful ways."
June Zhang leads the customer support team at Guru and she says, “We try to keep our support outreach as proactive as possible. It makes for a much more seamless customer experience if our customers know about an update or product issue before they find it out on their own. We want to keep our users in the know as best as we can. Intercom’s outbound messaging makes this process seamless and scalable.”
Driving team efficiency with bots
As Guru has expanded its product offerings, it’s been able to use Intercom in rich new ways. After launching a free version of its platform recently, the team immediately saw an uptick in trials that resulted in 179% increase in inbound conversations with trial users since the start of the year. June had to quickly devise a strategy to help these users onboard and find help without burdening her team with additional work.
The team found the solution in Intercom’s Custom Bots, which are now a cornerstone of their support strategy. They created a bot to automatically triage inbound conversations and route customers to the appropriate team for their questions. The bot also highlights pertinent Help Center articles for common how-to questions like how to edit permissions and import knowledge.
Using Intercom’s bot reporting, June can see how many people engage with the bot and whether they successfully reach the end of a bot path, meaning they’re successfully connected with the right team for their question. From there, she’s able to easily identify paths that need to be optimized in order to improve the user experience.
The team is also using Intercom’s automated tagging to compile rich insights about the feature requests and product questions that customers are asking for. That data is then used to inform the product roadmap development. June says, “In the past we based this feedback on gut instincts, but Intercom’s automated tagging has allowed us to be much more specific and detailed about the trends we’re seeing.” Intercom’s integration with Slack gives people an easy way to track incoming conversations related to topics they’re interested in.
Expanding the conversational experience at Guru
The success that Guru’s support team has seen with Intercom has led its sales team to adopt the platform as well. The team leverages Intercom’s outbound messaging to proactively engage with prospects on key landing pages, like their “Guru for Remote Support Teams” page. Custom Bots help the sales team pre-qualify leads and trial users, allowing the team to have richer conversations with prospects. Using Intercom’s auto-tagging feature, sales managers are able to analyze the team’s conversation data to see the kinds of conversations that naturally lead to upgrades. Armed with that data, they are developing strategies to drive similar conversations with other customers.
A customer experience that wins repeat customers
The customer experience that Guru has invested in over the years is not just a nice-to-have – it is an essential part of the company’s growth strategy. The team consistently sees its most loyal customers driving positive word of mouth for the company and introducing the platform to other prospective users.
From the start, Intercom has been at the center of that customer experience and it continues to power all aspects of Guru’s customer communications as the company has scaled. June shares, “Intercom is our direct lifeline to our customers. It has allowed us to holistically understand our customers and proactively connect with them.”