How to Keep Your Customers Smiling [Expert Interview]


Meet Ginny Richardson.

Our Summer Camp content series kicked off last week with an interview with Pardot Sales Manager Phil Simpson. Today, we?re joined by self-proclaimed cheese-lover Ginny Richardson (speaking of cheese, you can catch Ginny cheesin? in her childhood picture at the end of this post). As a Manager of Pardot?s Client Advocate team, Ginny focuses on coaching, onboarding, and ongoing training — as well as helping Pardot clients achieve their marketing goals (with a smile!).

Ginny is here to share a few of her secrets to building a successful customer advocacy program that keeps customers feeling appreciated and satisfied.

Let?s dive in!

Ginny, you?ve been at Pardot for almost four years now. What would you say it means to be a “customer advocate”? Does it differ from customer support?

Client Advocates are focused on helping our customers reach their marketing goals by providing them with Pardot strategy and marketing automation best practices. We want our clients to be successful so we work closely with the rest of the CFL team to ensure that’s the case!

We do have a different scope than the Support team, although we’re all focused on making our customers successful. The Support team is incredible at technical troubleshooting. They can identify problems and help provide solutions from a more technical perspective, whereas Advocates are more focused on the Pardot strategy and marketing automation best practices mentioned above.

What do you consider the “key” to keeping your customers smiling? Has your team found particular advocacy strategies to be most effective?

Advocates in their very nature do a great job of keeping customers smiling just by building rapport and truly understanding our clients’ needs. Our team cares a lot about the customer experience and knows that if we seek to understand our clients’ marketing goals and work together to make them successful, we’ll all be smiling!

Specifically, when a client provides feedback, our team follows up. Follow-up might include connecting internally with the appropriate teams or checking back in with the client to make sure we’ve resolved the feedback they provided. Advocates also attend user groups and larger events throughout the year so we can connect with our clients and hear firsthand how they’re utilizing Pardot. We strive to be timely, provide thorough answers and position ourselves as subject matter experts so the client knows they’re working with the best. Sending swag to offer some Pardot love never hurts either!

Noted! So for companies looking to set up a customer advocacy program of their own, what would be your biggest piece of advice?

Make sure to provide focus for the customer advocacy team so they are intentional about when and how to engage with customers. The Pardot Client Advocate team focuses on Customer Success, Customer Growth, and Customer Retention. We ultimately want to ensure clients are successful with Pardot, that they’re growing as a marketing team by meeting their goals and utilizing Pardot to the fullest, and finally, that they’re so successful that they stick with us for the long haul!

That?s great. Now, let?s try a few more fun questions! If you could recommend one place you’ve traveled, where would it be?

Florence, Italy! Hands down my favorite city. You can walk all over the city in one day, the food is the best I have ever eaten, the gelato is to die for, and the museums, art, shops, and people are incredible. If you find yourself booking a trip to Florence, contact me! I will give you all the recommendations.

Definitely agree. Okay, knowing how you feel about Disney movies, I?m excited to hear your answer to this one. If you could tandem skydive with one Disney character, who would it be and why?

I’m pretty sure I’ll never find myself tandem skydiving since I’m deathly afraid of heights but in my other adventurous life…

I would want to tandem skydive with Belle from Beauty and the Beast. She’s sensible and would completely understand why I’m scared out of my mind but would tell me to suck it up and go for it. She fell in love with a beast — what could be scarier than that?

She’s also my favorite Disney princess so I would be a traitor if I didn’t invite her to tandem skydive with me.

Awesome answer, Ginny, and thanks for sharing all of your insight with us! To our readers, check out Ginny?s kid pic below from her summer camp days, and get ready for the next post in our series, featuring training and customer enablement experts Scott Konkol and Anna Sims. See you again soon!


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