Customer Success holds the key to increasing revenue retention and increasing revenue from existing customers.

Churn and burn.  Not music to your ears.  You’re the leader of Customer Success and asked by your executive team to hold accountability for a number.

 

The honeymoon period for CS is over my friends.  Everybody in your organization knows you exist. In fact, you have done an outstanding job of educating your team and advocating for CS and its critical function.  Well done!

 

Be careful what you wish for…

 

Download the CS Onboarding & Development Tool to properly introduce new customers and users to your products so they truly view it as the solution they purchased, and review the steps in this tool to consider the resources available to assist in conducting each step, designing, and communicating the process.

 

The CS Revenue Number

 

 

If we get down to the bare, simplistic bones, you are in your position to answer the question: How does your company make more money with a Customer Success strategy?  Your Customer Success strategy?

 

Churn-reduction, upsell and cross sell, and loyal customers champing at the bit to generate referrals are all part of the revenue generated by CS.  Your VP of Sales and Marketing, respectively, own a number, and as part of the executive team, so do you.  If you haven’t already, take charge of your number and stand up to the bullies who continue to believe CS is a dumping ground.

 

Due to the unique nature of any company and their magic formula for Customer Success, there is no cookie cutter strategy to follow.  The method and madness behind your revenue number will be unique to your department.  Process Street recently published an insightful list of top CS processes in SaaS.

 

Customer Success: Let’s Be Honest

 

 

For software companies, SaaS or enterprise, Customer Success has become increasingly and alarmingly important to revenue growth.  The touchpoints inside the customer journey must be identified with a fine-toothed comb and assigned with well-crafted plays for your team to execute.

 

To get what you need as a CS leader, top talent, increased headcount, budget allocation, and let’s be honest, accolades, you have a battle to fight.  The investment made in lowering churn rates accelerate revenue by maximizing the value of your existing customers is capitalized by your carefully planned strategy.  As quickly as customers can decide on software, you need to be a few steps ahead to ensure they don’t jump ship.  A well-planned CS strategy outlined through the lens of accelerated revenue growth will only further demonstrate the effectiveness of CS as a critical function.

 

You have a number to make, and you are only as good as your team.  Need some insight on how to deploy those CSMs? Read this article.

 

CS – Welcome to Prime Time

 

The time may be now to review your current CS strategy, if you have one.  Perhaps you need a refreshed coat of paint on it.  Maybe you are tasked with picking up where someone left off.  Whatever the challenge, SBI has developed a guide to pair your expert knowledge with a plan and assist you in killing it with your CS strategy.   To aid in rolling out your strategy to your customers, download our CS Onboarding & Deployment Tool.

 

     

Because I like you, I am going to give you a sneak peek of a few critical planning areas:

 

  • Segmentation

     

    At SBI, we see this every day, regardless of size or industry. Segmentation is  key in Customer Success planning (and marketing…and sales).  Have you become surgical about defining your ICP?  Do you know the costs, existing or anticipated, associated with each customer?  If your answers are yes, great, how often are these answers refreshed?

     

    By having an intimate knowledge of your customers, you can then optimize allocation of resources.  Check out Bernie Kassar, Chief Customer Officer at Xactly Corporation, a SaaS company specializing in sales performance and compensation, and employee engagement.  Here is what Bernie, one of the Godfathers of CS, has to say in regards to segmentation (hint: Fast-forward to 8:01).

     

  • Opportunity Management Process

     

     Is your top talent aligned with the right accounts? Matching talent to customer is one of the fastest ways to ensure retention and drive growth. Do you have a documented, repeatable process for them to perform the right actions at the right time?  What job aids and playbooks have you developed for your team?  What are you doing for enablement?

     

    Once you align the talent, they need a plan for success and a definition of what it looks like.  They see success, they are motivated to repeat, and growth increases.

     

  • CS Ops

     

    How do you measure the success of your team? Do you have optimum metrics and reporting in place to ensure the efficiency of your team?  Operations is going to provide your team the necessary tools to scale.

     

Customer Success holds the key to increasing revenue retention and increasing revenue from existing customers.  As the sales team actively searches for new business, you have existing customers.  They spend money with you.  Half the battle is won. You, as the CS expert know the formula is pretty simple. If I am the sales leader, you are my new best friend.  Especially if you not only have a stellar CS strategy, but you have also mapped a CS journey specifically for customers as new logos.  Now, that’s an emerging best practice for growing faster than your competitors.

 

…and please, remember to remain authentic in your strategy.  Automation is fantastic at scale, but at the end of the day, it’s the experience, the emotion behind the touchpoints.  After all, we are still dealing with humans, at least the last time I checked.

 

Well, that is all I can share with you today.  If you want more view our 2019 Customer Success Strategy tool.

 

Download the CS Onboarding & Development Tool to properly introduce new customers and users to your products so they truly view it as the solution they purchased, and review the steps in this tool to consider the resources available to assist in conducting each step, designing, and communicating the process.

 


 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Melissa Valdez

Works closely with clients to 10x their SBI experience to make your number.

As the Director of Client Experience, Melissa helps clients adopt and thrive from their SBI experience.  Melissa is based in Dallas Texas at The Studio, SBI’s executive briefing center. She specializes in helping clients make your number.

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