Customer success is a methodology that entails predicting customers' problems and questions that might occur and providing solutions to them. This approach aims to lead consumers toward the success and achievement of their end goals. It helps companies drive customer satisfaction, retention, and loyalty.
In this article, we'll get to know why customer success is important, how it works, and how to build a customer success program. We'll also review customer success roles and responsibilities, compare customer success and customer service, and explore the key metrics.
Why is customer success important?
Today, the majority of successful brands pay great attention to customer success. They strive to understand their customers' needs and desires and anticipate future problems and questions. Companies help consumers attain their goals, resulting in a positive reputation, customer loyalty, high customer retention, and profitability. Statistics say that 72% of companies report customer success to be one of their major priorities and keys to progress, which is why they focus on its improvement.
Assisting clients and taking part in their success means a lot to your customers. As a result, you'll drive customer happiness and satisfaction and reduce churn. If people are satisfied with your company, they will sincerely recommend it to other people. Superb experience and achieving customer goals are excellent reasons to recommend a company and refer friends. Remember, buyers can help you increase your customer base when they are happy and satisfied, making your revenue grow. That's why you should manage your clients' inquiries, analyze customer portfolios to improve their experience, and help achieve buyers' goals.
Now that you know why customer success is crucial, it's time to find out how it works to manage the process properly.
How does customer success work?
If you want to deliver customer success effectively, you need to have a tool, team, and strategy.
- Select a tool or software. Choose a solution that suits your team's needs best to attain healthy relationships and establish seamless communication with customers. Search for your perfect software to communicate with clients when they need help and lead them to success. As a result, you'll get happy customers who stay loyal.
- Assemble a team of professionals. To lead customers toward success and assist them during every step of the process, you'll need a team. Look for friendly and supportive professionals who actually like your company and understand the products or services you offer. They should be able to react fast and provide solutions. Once you have a team, conduct training to ensure that your success reps know all the peculiarities of your products or services. When your company starts to grow, you can increase your customer success team size.
- Develop a strategy. You can use customer success strategies based on the solution you offer and customers' needs. However, you still need to gather a team, select your tools, and define customers' goals and your company's expectations. Make sure that every team member is aware of each step of your customer success strategy.
It's time to jump into the next section to explore the duties excellent customer success reps should perform.
Customer Success Roles and Responsibilities
Answering emails and managing tickets aren't the only responsibilities of customer success managers. Since customers' needs and goals are a priority for any company, a team of professionals who will manage these responsibilities effectively is a necessity. Customer success representatives are responsible for making a company and a customer gain value. Let's review more customer success reps' responsibilities:
- onboard new customers;
- call clients and assist them whenever they need help;
- provide training to clients so that they can get the most out of a product or service;
- build healthy, strong relationships with customers;
- check if a product meets customers' needs;
- implement innovations to bring customers to success and ensure value;
- establish trust, transparency, and credibility;
- pay attention to customer feedback to eliminate problems and enhance customer experience;
- act as a mediator between a customer and a company;
- offer clients to upgrade their subscription plans;
- track clients whose subscription plans are about to expire and offer to renew them.
Now that you understand customer success team responsibilities better, it's time to proceed to the difference between customer success and customer service. These two terms are often used interchangeably, yet they have distinct features that help reach different targets.
Customer Success vs. Customer Service
People often confuse customer success and customer service — what are they, and how do they differ? Let's take a look at each term in more detail to figure it out.
Customer success is a proactive process. It means that reps prevent customers from facing any problems that might arise. Customer success teams bring value to clients and strive to help them reach their primary goals. To do it, team members collect customer data and develop specific strategies, aiming to lead customers toward success. These teams focus on delivering value, increasing satisfaction, achieving goals, and providing a seamless experience.
Customer service is a reactive process. It indicates that customer support takes action only when a problem arises. Once issues appear, customer support reps search for solutions to help their customers. However, they don't prevent these problems. Customer service entails solving issues and assisting with processes that might be confusing for clients.
In a nutshell, customer success is about preventing customers from having any issues with a product in the future and reaching success, whereas customer service is about solving a problem once it arises at a specific moment.
The difference is clear now, so let's have a look at the process of creating a customer success program. It'll help you build your strategy more efficiently.
How do you build a customer success program?
There are numerous reasons behind customer success programs — a low number of customers who churn out, the opportunity to upsell, higher profitability, and more loyal clients are just a few of them. If you are interested in making your business more profitable and efficient, consider the following steps to create your plan.
- Define customers' goals. Understanding buyers' ultimate goals is the key to your team's success. Thus, you should learn what success means to your customers to create an effective program. Ensure you have a well-developed sales workflow to help identify clients' goals and align them with your product. Once you meet your leads' expectations, they become customers. Afterward, your customer success team starts assisting your new consumers.
- Identify the key metrics. Besides customers' goals, pay attention to the essential metrics. With their help, you'll be able to know the health of each account. The metrics you choose to assess each account depend on the product you provide to these users.
- Train your customer success team. Remember, a strong team of professionals can do wonders for your business. Since interactions between your reps and customers play an essential role in your brand growth, choose your employees carefully. Friendly and empathetic customer success managers can bring in new clients, but cold and grumpy ones can scare customers away.
- Ensure consistency in product and customer success teams. Product and customer success teams should work hand in hand to develop a product people will appreciate and benefit from and ensure consistency when communicating with customers. Since these teams often have different intentions and ideas, it can cause several problems. That's why you should be ready to prevent such issues and ensure seamless communication between product and customer success teams. Share your company's goals with them and use tools that suit both departments.
- Search for the right tool. Customer success is a popular methodology among different businesses, so you can find multiple solutions to keep an eye on your key metrics. There are many customer success tools that can meet your key needs, including ChurnZero, Planhat, Whatfix, and many more.
- Gather customer feedback. This step is mandatory since you'll be able to get a clear picture of customer satisfaction with your product and company in general. The net promoter score will help you assess whether your customers will recommend your brand to other people. This way, you'll have insights into your future steps.
Now that you know how to build a customer success program, let's walk you through the key metrics. These indicators will allow you to evaluate your customer success managers' performance.
5 Key Customer Success Metrics
To find out whether your customer success strategy is effective, you need to keep tabs on the primary metrics that help measure it.
- Customer health score. This metric helps determine whether customers are healthy or likely to churn. To discover whether a customer is healthy, you need to evaluate how often they use your product, how many users from one account use it, and what features they prefer to implement. A customer who logs in often has a healthy account. Still, if only a few users implement your product, it means that this account is at risk. This is a sign that your customer doesn't receive enough value to achieve their key goals.
- Customer churn rate. This metric helps instantly point out company representatives who establish strong and trusting relationships with clients and those who don't. A good customer success rep will have a lower churn rate. Building healthy relationships enables you to make more people stay loyal to your brand.
- Net promoter score (NPS). Ask your customers if they would recommend your company to their friends to evaluate your NPS. However, before doing it, make sure that your company provides the best customer experience. Check whether your clients are satisfied with your product and feel content about your customer support. Remember, relationships and communication with your brand's reps will influence their responses. If customers are happy with your company, they will tell their friends about your products or services.
- Customer lifetime value (CLV). This indicator helps you estimate the revenue you can earn from one customer. Brands use it to determine the value of each client. If this value increases, it means that your business grows and brings you higher profits. Check out the formula to calculate CLV for your business.
- Monthly recurring revenue. It allows you to find out how much money customers spend on your products each month. You can compare your revenue each month and determine whether it increases. This will give you an understanding of how useful your product is. If the value increases, it means that it helps customers succeed, and they continue purchasing it.
You know a lot about customer success now, so it's time to scale your business using it. Track these metrics to figure out whether your product helps customers thrive and succeed.
- This article defines the term and unveils the mission and responsibilities of customer success managers.
- In this article, you'll find 16 customer success metrics.
- This article talks about customer success manager responsibilities.
Last Updated: 22.09.2023