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Josh Simpson, Sr. Director Strategy and Business Development for Customer Success at Akamai,  needed a big lift with a short runway. He and his team had to clearly explain what the role of a CSM (Customer Success Manager) is to a team of 800 internal account reps.  And while doing it, they had to show the importance of organizing Customer Success at Akamai.

A CSM on the surface seemed to have a lot in common with an Engagement Manager, but they are very different roles.

How do we introduce CSMs so everyone understands it, sees the value, and is excited about it?

After all, CSMs mean more business and happier customers. 

Enter: Ana, our fictional client with fictional Apollo shoes. She had a problem but didn’t know which team member to ask for help. Lucas, her CSM, helps her see the entire project the way an air traffic controller can see the entire airport.

Through the power of analogy and visual storytelling, Akamai saw a 147% increase in understanding of “how a CSM fits into the Integrated Account Team” on a post- video rollout knowledge check.


With the power of a catchy video, a great analogy and a cool character named Lucas to be  the world’s best CSM, Akamai was able to clarify the new job to the team in just 5 weeks.

Bonnie Howden, Director of Product and Technical Learning , put together a robust communications plan, including a premiere at a big meeting and designing an internal page on their intranet, Aloha, that was heavy on visuals. 


They opted to lead with a gif of Lucas waving in the top banner and split the video into 4 fun clips so team members could learn at their own pace (and feel some control over the situation).


With two surveys gauging understanding before and then after the video + a serious content drip, the Akamai team is loving the story, and they are also loving the results from the internal team. 

This was a success for us. To have something that can cohesively tell this story across an international organization…makes a huge difference.

–Josh Simpson

Change is hard to implement, and even harder to measure. But with their openness to a creative approach and detailed collaboration in the script phase, Josh, Bonnie, and Akamai’s CSM team are flying high.


A big reason we worked with Whiteboard Geeks is the fact that it was DIFFERENT as an approach, not the same as the types of videos we get from our existing vendors. [This series] is unique and attention-grabbing. We wanted something that would stand out.

–Sylvi Alam-Hassan

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