You developed your business plan, set goals and milestones, hired talented staff, honed your product, sold effectively… and hit a sales plateau. You’re stuck because churn keeps occurring. You manage to add new customers, but you still lose about the same percentage regularly. You need a new strategy, a new tool that helps alleviate the problem. You need a customer success platform.
Yes, you read that right customer success because a focus on your customer’s success really trickles up to become your success. Successful customers tout your product and recommend you to others. Your customers recognize when your product provides them greater productivity and helps them do more. That remains true whether you make mops that help moms clean their kitchen more quickly or mapping software that helps manager track their delivery drivers’ whereabouts. Quality client success software helps every department do its job better – with its top job being taking care of customers.
Executives leverage CSP data and reports to retain and expand client relationships. In client conferences, this means knowing customer needs and potential issues going in, rather than the client blindsiding the executive. It provides frequency and nature of support calls, client contract renewal information and identifies those who have become top clients and key users.
A quality CSP provides the product development team with change and improvement requests, as well as developing client needs. It provides the team with key data to focus product innovations on what will sell and reduce churn. The team can identify product aspects that cause problems for customers and key elements they most utilize. From these two key groups, they can build focus groups for future product testing.
Accounting and Finance
The platform paints two accurate pictures for accounting and finance: the customer’s experience with its company and the activity of the Customer Service Manager assigned to the customer. This serves them better by driving appropriate fiscally-related contact. For example, it’s inappropriate to send past due reminders to a customer constantly experiencing problems with the product. Examining customer health before sending reminders drives appropriate contact. A reminder once customer health is restored through the CSM’s intervention (and, perhaps assistance by other departments) builds a better customer experience and relationship. It improves the product and reduces churn. It improves customer opinions of your company and what they say to others about you… and good, organic PR has never mattered more.
A CSP report on customer service contacts reveals what product aspects create issues for clients – individually and collectively. This lets CSMs reach out to individuals in the short-term. In the long-term, it uncovers areas requiring one of the following:
- a training session,
- a workshop,
- a product design change.
The platform also assists with initial client onboarding. It can help match incoming clients to CSMs, distributing assignments so no one becomes overburdened or underutilized.
The related team, technical support, benefits by knowing problem areas as they develop. This lets them customize technical information, such as the Known Issues report on the company website and in the automated information on the phone tree. It provides technical support the needed data to work with product development to quickly rectify issues. Individually, it helps them prioritize service requests.
The sales staff draws on CSP data regarding onboarding status, adoption and usage trends, customer health to learn how clients they courted fare with the product. This provides them keys to address existing problems, continue client relationships, cross sell and upsell further products. Another key point in a CSP, point-of-contact movement, lets a client know when their point person moves to another firm and which. This provides them an opportunity for a new sale if the point person’s new firm doesn’t already use the product. It provides the name of the new contact, so the salesperson can forge a new relationship to keep the existing customer. This alone goes a long way to reducing churn.
Marketing and Public Relations
CSPs help the marketing and public relations teams by identifying organic brand advocates and obtaining testimonials and referrals from them. It provides them metrics results on campaigns, especially related to sales. This translates to a revenue-based return on investment for each marketing campaign. That provides guidance when developing future marketing campaigns.
A CSP used correctly benefits your customers and your bottom line. You’ll better help customers make the most of your products while they’ll provide the keys to, directly and indirectly, attracting more customers. When you focus on customer success