Webex Events uses Intercom to provide stellar support, create world-class customer experiences, and drive more leads
With Kara Gladish, Manager of Customer Experience, and Clint Sheets, Customer Experience Specialist, at Webex Events.
At a glance
welcome tour completion rate
five-star customer satisfaction ratings
more qualified leads generated using Custom Bots
Webex Events is end-to-end event management software built to power virtual, in-person, and hybrid events.
Santa Clara, California, United States
Key features used
End-to-end event management platform Webex Events needed to provide stellar support and customer experiences at scale. With a customer roster that includes household names like Apple, Kampgrounds of America, OneCause, and Under Armour, having a solution that could balance personalization with efficiency and empower them to create next-level experiences was critical for the team.
Prior to being acquired by Cisco in 2021, Webex Events was known as Socio, a companion app for events that allowed attendees to see event agendas, speaker information, and network with other attendees. The Socio team initially began using Intercom as a support platform in 2017 and has expanded over the last six years. Now, as part of Cisco, they use the platform to support and connect with customers throughout the lifecycle, as well as interact with prospective customers that visit their website and qualify leads for the Sales team.
Operating in the events industry, Socio was greatly impacted by the onset of the pandemic in 2020. The team quickly adapted their product for virtual events. During this time, the need for an effective customer service platform became more crucial than ever. They leveraged Intercom to stay in close contact with their customers and set them up for success running events in the new digital-first world. The success that the team saw after this pivot caught the eye of technology conglomerate corporation Cisco, and eventually led to Socio being acquired and becoming Webex Events. Since then, Intercom has continued to enable personalized support and engagement at scale for the company’s rapidly-growing customer base.
Choosing the right platform
When the Webex Events (formerly Socio) team first evaluated support platforms in 2017, Joe Watkins, the company’s Chief Customer Officer and a co-founder, notes that Intercom was a cut above the rest in terms of its ability to power in-product messaging through the Messenger. “We looked at some other platforms, but Intercom stood out as being a great product and more focused on the customer than the other solutions, which is why we decided to go with it,” says Joe. “The other thing that we really liked was that Intercom was chat-first, whereas other platforms were ticketing-first, chat-second, which we didn’t feel aligned with our support goals.”
Joe notes that he had a number of requirements in mind when searching for a support platform, such as the ability to:
Offer customers messenger-based chat support and use emojis and gifs to match the company’s fun and playful tone and brand.
Host a robust knowledge base for help documentation.
Enable pop-up messages directly in the Webex Events (formerly Socio) platform.
Provide powerful automation to efficiently scale support as the company grew.
Intercom fit the bill when it came to the Webex Events team’s needs and offered the ability to expand to other use cases over time, which is why the team chose the platform to power its customer messaging.
Creating an engaging experience from day one
From the moment a new customer signs up for Webex Events or purchases a product, they’re led through a personalized journey to help them get up and running quickly and easily. Webex Events has a large portfolio of products, which means that customers can purchase any number of product combinations to meet their needs. With such a customizable offering, being able to personalize each customer’s journey from day one is of the utmost importance to the team.
“Now that we’re part of a Fortune 100 company, we have a more sophisticated suite of products, and we therefore need more sophisticated customer communications and targeting,” says Kara Gladish, Manager of Customer Experience at Webex Events. “Intercom has been a big help in enabling us to segment our customer base and personalize messaging in that way.”
Our welcome experience is all built within a Series. The welcome tour completion rate is currently sitting at 39%, compared with the industry average of 23%, and the 8% completion rate we were seeing with our previous solution.
Setting customers up for success
The Webex Events customer onboarding journey is powered using Intercom Series and checklists, which enables the team to bring new customers on a tailored walkthrough of their product sets to help set them up for success. “When a new user signs up, they get a welcome tour that shows them around the basics of the workspace and where to go to get help and resources,” says Clint Sheets, Customer Experience Specialist at Webex Events. “Our welcome experience is all built within a Series. The welcome tour completion rate is currently sitting at 39%, compared with the industry average of 23%, and the 8% completion rate we were seeing with our previous solution. It’s incredible how granular we can get with the targeting of these messages. It’s much more personalized now, and far more scalable."
Webex Events also uses Intercom’s Engage solution to communicate with customers about important product updates. “Intercom’s our source of truth when it comes to our customers,” says Kara. “We’ve built our customer newsletter in Intercom, and we also share monthly product announcements using its outbound messaging capabilities. Most recently, we’ve started using tooltips in these announcements to show people the new features that we’re launching, which is crucial in a competitive and fast-paced industry.”
A one-stop shop for customer service
Throughout the welcome journey and beyond, Webex Events puts a great deal of focus on letting customers know how and where they can get support. It’s important to the team that customers have the option of speaking directly with Support and also have the option to self-serve, if they prefer. To ensure customers can receive the type of support that they want, the team leverages Intercom’s automation, Articles feature, and inbox management capabilities to make their support efficient and scalable, as well as to create educational content for customers who’d like to self-serve answers to their own questions.
“We have different types of customers, so we need to be able to serve all of their different needs,” says Kara. “We use Intercom for human support, but also as a resource for our self-service customers, and it plays a huge role in us being able to help them be successful. They get checklists, product tours, outbound messages, and help documentation from us to provide product education throughout their journey, and they can always reach out to our Support team if they need extra help.”
Anthony Miller, Director of Global Support at Webex Events, explains that Intercom is at the helm of the company’s support operation. The team uses the platform to manage all inbound customer queries, host their help center, and monitor support performance to ensure customers are always getting a stand-out experience. And with an award-winning Support team, it’s no surprise that their customer satisfaction score sits at a staggering 99%. “We’ve consolidated all of our support into Intercom and our results have continued to trend upwards,” says Anthony. “It’s also helped us to reduce the cost of our support overall. We have 99% five-star ratings and our response time is under five minutes – Intercom empowers us to do that.”
Intercom’s personal communication style has been really core to our culture and personality, even as we’ve grown from a company with 20 people to one with 200 people.
Since adopting Intercom in 2017, many of the initial requirements the Webex Events (formerly Socio) team had for a customer support solution have become their favorite elements of the platform. “Our culture is fun, so being able to use gifs and emojis has been absolutely huge for us. We often get comments from customers saying, ‘I never knew support could be so fun,’” says Kara. “We have an award-winning Support team and they’re the heart of our company. When they use the gifs and emojis, our customers just have a ball. We’ve built our culture around that. Intercom’s personal communication style has been really core to our culture and personality, even as we’ve grown from a company with 20 people to one with 200 people.”
Driving sales with the Intercom Messenger
In addition to customer support and engagement, the Webex Events Sales team uses Intercom to engage with prospective customers that visit their website. They have set up a bot to greet site visitors and ask for information to understand what those visitors need, so they can qualify and connect them with the right teammate to help them with their query.
One of our sales reps shared that right after launching the bot, the number of qualified leads that they received increased by 154%.
“One of our sales reps shared that right after launching the bot, the number of qualified leads that they received increased by 154%, and it’s due to the information these leads are proactively providing,” Kara says.
Focusing on the future
Having already seen such success using Intercom for customer support, engagement, and sales, Webex Events has plans to continue building on the customer experience and leveraging more of Intercom’s features to delight customers.
“We have lots of ideas for our customer journey and how we can optimize it even more,” says Clint. “For instance, we want to use Intercom Surveys to ask customers about their goals and what it is that they want to accomplish so we can use those insights to further personalize our Series based on what’s most relevant for them.” When it comes to support, the team also has plans to dive deeper into bots and automation to help them scale, drive increased efficiency, and optimize the Support team’s time.
I can’t imagine our company without Intercom. It’s been with us from the early startup stage to us growing and becoming part of Cisco.
Looking to the future, Kara points to the huge growth opportunity that lies ahead of Webex Events, noting that the team is confident that Intercom will continue to scale alongside them. “I can’t imagine our company without Intercom,” she says. “It’s been with us from the early startup stage to us growing and becoming part of Cisco. We’re excited for what the future holds for our partnership with Intercom.”