Building Client Retention
Outside The Classroom is a Boston-based company that was founded to address epidemic-level public health issues affecting education, corporate, and government institutions. The company’s mission is to deliver tangible results to its customers by providing measurable reductions in the negative consequences associated with these health issues. In an effort to deliver on this promise, Outside The Classroom has remained focused on one of the largest of these problems: high-risk drinking.
The company’s flagship product, AlcoholEdu®, has set the standard for online alcohol prevention through Population-Level Prevention®, an approach that delivers alcohol prevention education to entire student groups, the key to changing a campus drinking culture, easily and cost effectively. The AlcoholEdu product line includes four programs for both college and high school students delivered in both prevention and intervention capacities.
Outside The Classroom is a private, venture-backed company with no ties to the alcohol industry. The company has relationships with some of the leading associations in the U.S. devoted to student health and safety, including the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA), the leading voice in student affairs, and Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD).
As a private, venture-backed software-as-a-service technology company, Outside The Classroom has aggressive growth targets. Each client is considered a key account and without high retention rates they would not meet their growth needs. While they had a “gut feeling” about which clients were happy and which were considering defecting, they had no formal measures in place for satisfaction or loyalty.
Outside The Classroom needed to replace their gut feelings with hard numbers and action plans in order to meet their venture firm’s expectations.
THE BROOKESIDE APPROACH
Brookeside conducted an initial Relationship Assessment® to establish a baseline measure of the state of Outside The Classroom’s client relationships and the strength of their loyalty. Brookeside then worked with Outside The Classroom to analyze their results and craft a strategy for improving struggling relationships through customized action plans, account manager training, and internal leadership coaching. A key component of this strategy was using Brookeside INSIGHT™ to distribute results immediately online to the account managers who needed them.
The INSIGHT software proved successful as measured by increased retention rates after the first year. Outside The Classroom has run Relationship Assessments for five years on its entire client base and has utilized INSIGHT to distribute results throughout the company.
Assessments are sent via e-mail to Outside The Classroom’s clients and completed online. Results are automatically captured and delivered online immediately to Outside The Classroom’s team through INSIGHT with downloadable action plans based on account strengths and weaknesses. Brookeside also conducts sales and relationship management training workshops to reinforce Outside The Classroom’s initiative and to help foster actual behavior change.
Outside The Classroom successfully implemented a corporate shift to focus on retention and key account planning. They are consistently meeting their growth goals and are experiencing the many benefits that come with increased loyalty and retention rates.
This chart shows the upward trend among a set of clients who have been with the company from 2005 through 2008. There has been a 40% increase in loyal key accounts. Had Outside The Classroom not actively measured and managed these relationships, many would have already defected.
“Brookeside INSIGHT™ has provided our company with unique visibility to our clients’ perceptions and priorities. The insights on a client-specific level, as well as an aggregate level, have allowed us to sustain our high client retention rates. When times demand stronger client relationships than ever before, we know that our investment keeps us informed when we need it most.”
– Angela Han, Vice President, Partner Services & Operations, Outside The Classroom