How to create asynchronous QBRs with Journey
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How to create asynchronous QBRs with Journey

A core part of working in customer success involves demonstrating the value your business provides your customers. Quarterly Business Reviews (QBRs) have traditionally been the main way of doing this. 


But in today’s world of remote work and distributed teams spanning continents and timezones, wrangling everyone’s schedules to find a time for a QBR can be difficult and sometimes impossible. The follow up to the QBR is typically a long email with a list of links and several attachments, leaving customers overwhelmed with fragmented information and resources. 


Enter Journey, a way to do async QBRs and a better way to present and share your QBR content.

The purpose of QBRs

QBRs help strengthen the relationship between your business and your customer’s business. A QBR might involve the following: 


  • Review the customer’s business objectives, success criteria, and metrics
  • Review the customer’s usage and adoption 
  • Show your customers the latest features
  • Discuss your product roadmap and vision
  • Collect feedback about your product


Every business is different, there’s no set-in-stone way to run a QBR, but these are common elements of a QBR. Now, let’s take a look at why you might want to use Journey to create an async QBR.

4 reasons to use Journey for your QBRs

QBRs cover a lot of different types of information. They typically involve a screen-sharing dance between a slide deck and a variety of other visual assets like links, documents, and more. Journey enhances the customer experience by putting a fresh and modern spin on quarterly business reviews. Whether you want to do async or live QBRs, Journey can help improve the experience.

1. Package up your QBR content into a single link

With Journey, customer success managers can package up their QBR content into one tool and provide their customers a single link to access the content. Say goodbye to coordinating multiple people’s schedules, and say goodbye to sending long emails with endless amounts of links and attachments. With Journey, you can bundle your slide deck, product demonstration videos, design mockups, PDF documents, surveys, and more into a single link for your customers to review on their own time.

2. It’s still interactive

QBRs are meant to be interactive and engaging. Your customer needs a chance to voice their feedback, concerns, and questions. With Journey, async QBRs can still be interactive. Using Journey’s reactions, comments, and survey tool integrations, you can ensure your customers have an opportunity to engage with the information presented in the QBR. Additionally, Journey allows you to integrate your Calendly account so your customers can schedule a meeting with you if they would like.

3. Save time by avoiding repeat presentations

QBRs often involve presenting the same information to multiple customers. You might be bringing in your product manager to review the roadmap, or to talk about the product vision. Imagine creating that content once and sharing it multiple times. You can do that with Journey. This not only saves your team time, it creates a more consistent message across your customer base.


4. You can measure engagement

QBRs take a lot of time and effort to prepare for. With Journey, you can measure how engaging your QBR is so you can modify it in the future. Journey also allows you to see who has reviewed your QBR content, what areas of the QBR customers are spending the most time on, and which areas were the least engaging.



Now, let’s take a look at what a QBR might look like in Journey.

A template for asynchronous QBRs in Journey

The introduction & agenda

A quarterly business review is a great chance to re-introduce your team. Just like you would during a live QBR, introduce yourself as the CSM and remind your customer what your role and responsibilities are.


This is also an appropriate time to set expectations on what you’ll be covering during the QBR. That is, the agenda for the QBR. For this part of the async QBR template, we’ll have a section in Journey called “Introduction & Agenda”, then we will have two steps within that section of the Journey for a welcome message and an overview of the agenda. This enables viewers to jump to each of those spots in the presentation at any time. 

Objectives

As a customer success manager, you should have a solid understanding of your customer’s business objectives. Your role, as the CSM, is to help drive them to achieve those objectives through using your product. During this part of the QBR, you’ll want to acknowledge those objectives to show the customer you understand what they want to achieve by using your product. This is also a good time to share usage metrics with your customer so they understand how they are (or are not) using your product across their organization.


For this part of the async QBR, we’ll have a new section called “Objectives”. It will contain two steps with slides named “Business objectives” and “Usage and adoption”.

Latest features and roadmap

Now that you’ve reviewed your customer’s business objectives and adoption metrics, it’s a good time to introduce them to new features and get them excited about what’s coming in the future. 


This section of the Journey will be called “Latest features and roadmap”. It might contain a link to your release notes (if they’re available), or it could be a slide or two outlining what you’ve shipped in the last quarter.


The second step in this section of the Journey will be a set of slides dedicated to your roadmap. This is an excellent time to communicate your product vision and show your customers that you’re investing in their continued success through new solutions.

Next steps and feedback

We’ve set the stage for the QBR, reviewed the customer’s business objectives and adoption metrics, and we’ve discussed recently released features and the product roadmap. Now it’s time to provide a few recommendations, collect some feedback, and give them a chance to book a meeting with you if they choose. While this is an async QBR, we still want to be available for our customers, so make sure you give them a chance to engage you in a live meeting if they want.


In this section of the async QBR, we’ll have a few different steps. First, we’ll record a video message personalized for this customer with our recommendations. Next, we’ll have an opportunity for them to leave feedback about the product, service, and the QBR itself. Journey integrates with survey tools and form builders so you can easily surface surveys like this in your Journey. Finally, we’ll use Journey’s Calendly integration to give the customer an opportunity to book a live meeting.


And that’s a wrap, the QBR is ready to be shared with your customers!

Using Journey for a live (traditional) QBR

If asynchronous QBRs aren’t an option for your team, Journey can still help you level up your QBR presentation. Here are some ways you might still consider using Journey for your live QBRs.

Journey allows you to seamlessly present from a single tool

If the idea of an async QBR isn’t appealing to you and or your team, that’s fine. Journey is still a great way to present your QBR material to your customer in a seamless way. With Journey, you won’t be jumping between applications, windows, or tabs. Instead, your slide deck, your video, your PDF, your web link and more can all be presented from the flow of a Journey, directly in your web browser. 

Journey provides a better way to follow up

We’ve all been here: after the QBR wraps up, it’s time to send the follow up email. It typically looks like a wall-of-text with some bullet points linking to information and resources, and an attachment of the slides you just presented. With Journey, your follow up email after the QBR can point to a single link containing your slides and any other information you need to send the customer. Simply edit the QBR Journey to include the additional pieces of content, and share the link with your customer.

Closing thoughts

Quarterly business reviews are a great way to show your customers the value you’re providing but they require a lot of time and effort to put together. Scheduling is becoming more and more difficult with remote workers spanning the globe. Journey is a great way to put together your QBR, present it, and share it with your customers. If you like the template we presented above, join the waitlist to get access to the async QBR template. Click here to see Journey in action. 


Do you have tips on how we can make our async QBR template better? Please share your ideas with us by emailing founders@journey.io.


Author

Jake Bartlett

Jake was the 1st Customer Success hire at Firehydrant and Statuspage (Acquired by Atlassian). He is obsessed with providing an amazing customer experience throughout the entire journey.

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