Sometimes Sam Metzer finds himself losing people to the weeds. As a solutions engineer at DocuSign, Sam plays a crucial role during the pre-sales process, helping customers understand the value DocuSign has to offer. But during most of these conversations, he talks to very non-technical customers about very technical concepts—all the nitty gritty details is where he starts to lose the customer. Luckily, Sam has found a way to rescue people from the weeds and draw them back in: visuals.
When a customer purchases DocuSign, it replaces an existing business process at their organization. These processes can be complex and cumbersome with multiple parties involved, certain documents only legally visible to certain parties, etc. During a customer call, Sam describes DocuSign’s API in great detail or goes in depth to understand a customer’s workflow. There are a lot of moving parts, and sometimes it’s a lot for a non-technical audience to consume, especially if Sam is just rattling off information—most of it will go in one ear and out the other.
But if he puts the information in a flowchart, suddenly the complex becomes simple, and people pay attention. That’s why after a customer call, Sam immediately opens Lucidchart to convert his notes to visuals. His diagrams vary in level of technicality, but all clearly illustrate the process by which DocuSign interacts with or replaces existing systems at the customer’s organization. These diagrams convey meaning in a way words simply can’t do alone.
With horizontal and vertical swimlanes, Sam can clearly identify both the owners and stages of a process. He relies on Lucidchart’s shape libraries, preset themes, and custom objects to make aesthetically pleasing diagrams quickly. And most of the time, Sam doesn’t have to start a diagram from scratch. “I started using Lucidchart with the intent of creating modular diagrams that allow me to just plug and play when I am working with a customer. I can just replace pieces of the diagram to fit the level of technicality we need to get into around a specific subject,” Sam explains. He is building a repository he can pull from every time it comes time to craft a new flowchart for a customer’s use case.
And using Lucidchart is a much smoother experience than Sam’s previous diagramming endeavors, which primarily consisted of fighting Visio. “I have used Visio in the past, but it’s never been a particularly great experience, so I have never done a large amount of flowcharting until I came into this position. I started using Lucidchart, and it’s a pretty phenomenal product. I enjoy using it and find it much easier to use than Visio.”
Closing more deals
Once Sam has a finished diagram, he exports it as a PNG to email to a customer for final approval. Sam’s latest Lucidchart experiment makes the feedback process instantaneous but puts his diagramming skills to the test: he does a screenshare and creates a flowchart in real time while on the phone with a customer. This process allows him to verify its accurateness as they go, rather than having to email versions back and forth.
Sending these diagrams to customers helps them wrap their head around the solution Sam is proposing, allowing them to feel more confident in DocuSign’s abilities and more comfortable moving forward with the sales process.
“Providing a diagram makes the conversation easier for the customer. No question. Being able to have this visual diagram of what we can and can't do significantly increases the customer's retention and grasp of the information. It gives them a sense of security that this isn’t our first rodeo.”
Diagrams clear up the channels of communication between DocuSign and a customer. They cut down on the noise—Sam’s workflows demonstrate exactly how DocuSign will handle of every step of their process. “After seeing these diagrams, a customer can walk away from this saying, ‘Wow! We can do this. This is tangible. This is something I can hold. This is the process right here.’”
And Sam can see the difference in how a deal progresses based on whether or not a diagram is involved. While the process is getting quicker as his template repository grows, Sam currently doesn’t have enough time to be crafting diagrams for every deal he works on in a week. But he recognizes the need to include more diagrams in more sales conversations.
“A huge piece of our success through our sales process is really understanding the customer’s workflow and letting the customer understand exactly where we plug in. I suspect that if we, as a company, utilized Lucidchart more heavily, we’d be closing more business. It’s a great solution, and we need to do a better job taking advantage of what we have in front of us.”
Increasing customer retention
Not only does Lucidchart help DocuSign gain customers, but it also helps the company to keep them. Like most companies, DocuSign focuses on customer retention, since customer acquisition is much higher than the cost of maintaining a customer. And they’ve realized that the best way to retain customers is to have a complete knowledge of what a customer is looking for and provide them with a pleasant onboarding experience.
Once a customer has approved the diagram created by Sam (or another of many solutions engineers at the company), it’s passed along to the professional services team who is in charge of getting customers up and running with DocuSign. These diagrams inform the team as they start working with a customer on implementation and serve as a part of the customer’s living history in Salesforce. This understanding of a customer before implementation even begins helps the team to provide the optimal onboarding experience.
Lucidchart pulls more than just customers out of the weeds. Lucidchart also helps to clarify concepts for DocuSign employees and even Sam himself. “When I find myself failing to grasp a very complicated concept that I may not have been exposed to before, I will structure it out in Lucidchart. That way, I deepen my own understanding of the problem at hand but also have something I can share with my team to explain the idea,” Sam explains.
As one of the more technical people on his team, Sam has a folder containing workflows of the deep technical aspects of the product. The folder is shared with DocuSign employees so they can reference how DocuSign’s API handles certain use cases. When non-engineers ask Sam technical questions, he usually responds in the form of a diagram.
Clearly, Lucidchart has rescued many DocuSign customers from the weeds. “I’m positive that Lucidchart helps increase our close rate. I would say it moves the needle, increasing our existing close rate by 20%. And it shortens our deal cycle as well,” says Sam.
So don’t let your customers get stuck in the weeds. Let Lucidchart add clarity and credibility to your sales process today.