Should you offer customer training? What about free vs. paid customer training?, Live vs. on-demand training? Should you offer certifications? What types of courses will help drive product engagement? How can you help users choose the customer training content that’s right for them?
If you need a little inspiration for your customer training strategy, we’ve got you covered with highlights from some examples we love, in no particular order.
Best Customer Training Examples for Brand, Product & Business Strategy
- Category, such as sales, marketing, and design
- Content type, such as lessons, certifications, and user guides
- Topic, such as email marketing, social media, and SEO
What we love: Hubspot’s learning center is a great example of how customer training can drive brand awareness and product usage. Hubspot has also become an industry leader in educating marketers on inbound, in large part thanks to its customer training content.
Zendesk offers both free and paid customer training to onboard their customers at scale.
Their program consists of distinct learning pathways for admins, agents, and developers. Zendesk’s customer portal also includes a wide variety of training, including:
- On-demand content
- Virtual, instructor-led training (ILT)
- Custom training
- Onsite training
What we love: Zendesk’s customers can select the content that best fits their learning style. As a result, Zendesk has been able to optimize the user experience and increase engagement. Also, Zendesk uses a number of tools that all work together — such as Examity, Caveon, and Credly — to get their certifications up and running and ensure the best customer experience.
Related Content: Learn how Zendesk uses certifications as part of their customer training strategy
ServiceNow provides an expansive portfolio of customer training across IT, HR, Customer Service, and other departments. Learning paths are available for administrators, developers, and implementers. Individual courses can also be filtered by type, role, topic, and certification.
What we love: Like many customer training platforms, the ServiceNow Training and Certification team has converted many of their highly popular live classes to on-demand format. They offer several options for learners – from private vs public live instructor-led classes to on-demand courses – so they can choose the way they want to learn, and at what price point.
Optimizely’s Optiverse Academy and Certification platform makes it easier for customers to discover the right training content for them, and prepare for certifications.
What we love: Optimizely Academy gives its customers flexibility in how they learn. For example, individual courses and learning paths are also broken down by product, strategy, and results. Optimizely customers can also choose between trainings and certifications. Further, in addition to customer training. Optimizely also offers trainings to its employees through Single Sign-On (SSO).
Outreach uses free customer training to proactively address support questions from its customers designed to get new customers up to speed quickly and efficiently. Rather than having their CSMs conduct 1:1 customer training, Outreach scaled its customer success by using customer education to improve the way their team works.
What we love: Outreach University includes set tracks for different job functions and aspects of the product. When support tickets emerge, the Outreach team can direct customers to relevant customer training content. The Outreach team also looks at past training performances to provide targeted recommendations.
Related Content: Learn how Outreach used customer training to accelerate user growth and improve the way his Customer Success team works.
Splunk’s education portal has instructor-led customer training, web-based training, and on-site classes. Courses are designed for Splunk users, administrators, developers, architects, and partners.
What we love: Splunk does a great job organizing its customer training portal by experience level by using filters. Having the ability to search for courses based on content type, role, product, and more makes it easy for Splunk customers to find the right content for their needs.
Specifically, Procore offers a free training and certification program to its customers. This program has role-based customer training courses, deep-dive training on their suite of tools, and the option to earn continuing education credits.
What we love: When a Procore customer completes training, they have the option to display a certificate on their LinkedIn profile. This has enabled Procore to build their LinkedIn community and establish the company as an industry thought leader.
Related content: Learn more about how Procore launched its certification program for customers.
8. Red Hat
Red Hat has an extensive customer training curriculum, which can be sorted by country and product line. Red Hat customers can purchase either a one-year individual subscription designed to help individuals grow technology skills, or enterprise plans to meet the needs of a growing team.
What we love: Red Hat offers multiple options for subscription customer training to help customers find the tier that meets their needs from early access technology previews to certification testing.
OSIsoft Learning is a customer and partner education portal that goes beyond a basic customer training course catalog to offer a holistic learning experience. OSIsoft’s customer training incorporates lab environments into every online course and gives customers valuable, hands-on practice with their products. Their program also includes role-based learning paths with short eLearning modules that learners can easily find and access. Additionally, OSIsoft offers virtual, instructor-led training (VILT) on its platform, providing more in-depth customer training opportunities and live interaction with OSIsoft engineers.
What we love: OSIsoft delivers a holistic customer training experience that always keeps its customer’s needs in mind. From online lab environments to opportunities to connect directly with OSIsoft, each customer training type is tailored to its audience.
Related Content: Learn how OSIsoft drove a 1,000% increase in self-paced online course registrations after overhauling its customer training portal.
Editor’s Note: This article was originally published in 2018 and has been updated in 2021.