The Ultimate Guide to Marketing & Product Alignment
Download now!

Unlocking Product-Led Growth: The Power of Personalized Onboarding

Usha Vadapalli
July 14, 2023

Onboarding is one of the important levers a product-led growth (PLG) business can pull to accelerate their growth. Whether it's a free trial user or a new customer on a paid plan, the onboarding process sets the foundation for their experience with the product. Positive initial experience significantly influences a user’s or customer’s likelihood of achieving value and becoming long-term advocates. A few key reasons why:

  • Driving Product Adoption: By focusing on self-serve or low-touch onboarding experiences, intuitive interfaces, and seamless user flows, PLG businesses allow users to explore and understand the product independently. This empowers users to drive their own adoption journey, reducing reliance on sales teams and enabling a scalable and efficient growth model.
  • Accelerating Time to Value: By guiding users through key features, functionalities, and use cases, onboarding helps them achieve their desired outcomes faster. Effective onboarding ensures that users quickly understand the core value proposition of the product and can start realizing its benefits.
  • Enhancing User Engagement and Retention: Effective onboarding provides users with a seamless introduction to the product, guiding them towards key value-driving actions, and empowering them to quickly achieve their desired outcomes. So, you’d see continued user engagement and long-term customer satisfaction. So, positive onboarding increases the customer's lifetime value and retention rate.
  • Establishing User Advocacy: Some customer onboarding reports show 74% of the customers may switch if onboarding is complicated. A great onboarding experience earns you loyalty and advocacy. Word-of-mouth referrals and positive user testimonials contribute to organic growth and can lead to product-led customer acquisition, expanding the product's reach and success.

A great onboarding strategy is crucial in driving user adoption, engagement, and ultimately for product success in product-led B2B SaaS companies.

Tailoring Onboarding

The biggest lever a PLG company can pull to make their onboarding more efficient and successful is ‘personalization’.

Don’t get me wrong. There are some very effective best practices to revolutionize onboarding at a PLG company. We’ve written and talked about them extensively. But, personalization is one such factor that is common and expected from the end-users, making it essential.

Personalization is particularly effective as it recognizes that different users or teams may have unique requirements and goals. By understanding their specific needs, challenges, and workflows, onboarding can be tailored to deliver a more relevant and impactful experience. This customization not only increases user satisfaction but also demonstrates that the product understands their specific pain points and provides solutions to address them.

Personalization and PLG

The effects of personalization in onboarding don’t end with the initial product experience. The positive vibes definitely trickle down to the next stages of the customer journey unlocking PLG.

Here are some ways in which personalization in onboarding can contribute to product-led growth:

  1. Targeted User Segmentation

When you think about executing a personalized onboarding journey, you begin by segmenting your users based on specific attributes, such as industry, role, or goals. Understanding these segments is beneficial not only for onboarding but also for your PLG business.

Think of the ideal product pathways for each targeted segment beyond onboarding. With a steady flow of relevant information and product experience your retention rates jump up automatically.

  1. Customized User Journeys

    Speaking of ideal product pathways, personalized onboarding also enables the creation of customized user journeys that adapt to individual preferences and progress.

    By analyzing user behavior and preferences, PLG companies can dynamically adjust the onboarding process (or any other part of the customer journey) to match the user's level of expertise, pace of learning, and specific goals with the product. This flexibility ensures that users receive the right information at the right time, enhancing their experience and driving deeper engagement.
  1. Adaptive Content Delivery

    By tailoring the content, such as tutorials, in-app tips, or product recommendations, to the user's specific needs and context, companies can deliver a more personalized and meaningful onboarding experience. This level of customization fosters user engagement, as users feel that the product understands their unique requirements and provides relevant solutions.
  1. Relevant Feature Highlighting

    You can achieve a better conversion rate by showcasing the features and functionalities of the product that are most relevant to the user's goals during onboarding. Pointing towards the functionalities that are most relevant a.k.a personalized recommendations with helpful resources helps users see the immediate value and relevance of the product, increasing their motivation to explore and adopt it further. This targeted feature highlighting accelerates user activation and drives PLG.
  1. Proactive Support

    By leveraging user data and insights, companies can proactively provide tips, resources, or in-app messages that address specific pain points or help users overcome common obstacles during their initial experience with the product.

    You can extend the support by assigning a CSM for a more white-glove experience for your high-value enterprise customers without losing the personalization. The key is to equip your teams with the same insights from the customer’s product activity.

All the aforementioned points are a PLG win-win. Personalized onboarding fosters user engagement, accelerates user adoption, and drives organic growth, ultimately unlocking the full potential of a product-led growth strategy. With the right data and tools in place, companies can successfully implement personalized onboarding and pave the way for sustainable growth.

Inflection is a marketing platform built for the modern data stack and for use cases like this. We combine the users’ product activity, CRM, and marketing activity data to show you a unified view of your individual customers and accounts.

We purpose-built Inflection for B2B product-led companies not just for campaigns like onboarding, but also to drive activation, retention, and expansion with the right message at the right time, so you can generate more revenue from your customers.

We just shipped a ton of new features. Request a demo to see Inflection live.

Get monthly blog roundup

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.