Using Klaviyo for User Tracking and Customer Development

In the process of building Klaviyo, we’ve been leveraging Klaviyo itself extensively in our customer development process – specifically to understand how our customers are getting value from our product so that we can rapidly iterate on both the product itself and on our marketing and customer service.  While our software makes this easier, the underlying process is relevant to any company trying to learn as much as possible from its users.

At its core, our customer development process is rooted in one important fact:

What people actually do is far more important than anything they say.

Understand who is getting Value

Our starting point is to understand the customers who are regularly using the core features of our product that we believe directly drive value for our customers. These customers can provide the anecdotes that help us focus our development / sales / marketing energies on the right problems and companies – in short, they tell us what we got right.

For us, this actually involves looking at a few different groups in our system each week:

  • Users who login very frequently
  • Users who actively create groups of customers
  • Users who have sent email to a group of their customers through our system

Analyze Customers who aren’t and develop Hypotheses

Equally, if not more, important to successful users is understanding customers who aren’t getting value. For us, we limit this group to be customers who have sent data (i.e. they are at least somewhat actively engaged in using our software), aren’t on our team, and haven’t been active in the last 7 days.

This list makes a great starting point for understanding what isn’t working – for instance:

  • Our value proposition isn’t high or clear enough
  • Our product isn’t valuable enough to this type of company
  • Our product doesn’t solve the problem
  • Our process (training, onboarding, etc) failed them
  • Etc – and likely part of all of the above.

Once we have this list, we use it for targeted outreach to better understand our users and the problems they are trying to solve.  It’s worth revisiting the point we started with: no matter what people may tell you, having them use your product to generate value is what’s most important. By diving deeper on a few specific use cases (and having conversations about their business and problems), we develop ideas about ways to iterate on the product – and judge our results by whether they add value to our clients.

Analyze Key Features by User and in Aggregate

In addition to focusing on individual users, we also focus feature by feature to understand overall usage and who is specifically using or not using a given feature. Doing this once a week keeps us in touch with what people are doing, especially as we’re thinking through future development priorities.

Lessons We’ve Learned

Distilling the above, we’ve learned several valuable lessons about why to focus our attention on individual behaviors and segmentations compared to just using aggregated stats:

  • Evaluating your performance by what people do gives you the most realistic picture of how you are doing
  • Understanding what defines the most successful users gives you powerful clues to where you might want to go in the future
  • Identifying hypotheses about why certain people aren’t using your product gives you tangible actions to test

Listen to the user – both what they say AND what they do.

Interested in seeing how Klaviyo can help your customer development?  Get started with a trial (and if you’re a startup and are one of the first ten people to email me at ed.hallen@klaviyo.com, I’ll give you a discount code for half off on the monthly fee of the basic plan).

 

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