How Sid Burgess Maintains Great Customer Development as User Base Grows

If you've ever thought small towns and city governments are behind the times, think again. Sid Burgess, the Director of Government Relations at DotGov, has helped change all that. DotGov makes an application called YouTown, which makes it easy for cities and towns across the US to connect with their citizens – it's a mobile app that constituents can download, and governments can share information like maps, news, events and standard information.

The barrier of entry for a local government actually going mobile is now gone, and the only obstacle before them is about 5 minutes to sign up. When you stop and think about what it would mean to have most governments mobile, the idea gets pretty exciting.

YouTown: Bringing Mobile to Government

Sid and the YouTown team beta tested the product for a year before they brought it to market – they wanted to make sure it worked exactly the way that city and town governments needed it to. They did a great job, so much so that the White House recognized YouTown as a “Champion of Change.

The YouTown team is still extremely dedicated to customer development and interaction with current users, but as they grew, finding ways to expand their reach was a challenge. Sid found that there were two ways he could connect with customers over email – he could either send out a mass mailing or he could send personalized emails to each person.

I didn't want the primary way that our customers heard from us to be through a newsletter — a fairly impersonal form of correspondence.

Customer Development – The Personal Way

In order to maximize his reach and still maintain a personal touch, Sid decided to use Tout. He started using Tout groups to segment the people he wanted to reach out to. It made it really easy for him to create personal messages that were relevant to the right people.

I describe Tout as the easiest way to be as personable as you have always wanted to be, without the time of crafting hundreds of emails.

Tout has allowed Sid to maintain an extremely high level of engagement with people in governments using YouTown. He's able to quickly let people know about new features and get their feedback – it's the same concept as when YouTown was in beta, but at scale. Tout is the perfect tool for Sid to maintain fast, personal emails, and it's allowing him to get hugely beneficial interaction with YouTown users.If you're looking for a way to engage with your customers in a very personal way, try Tout today.