Acquiring new customers is expensive. This is why “Customer Success” teams are being deployed in more and more companies with the “ultimate goal of customer satisfaction.” And with good reason: ensuring the health of customer bases is a major challenge for today’s companies.
1. The challenges of Customer Success
Ensuring customer satisfaction and loyalty
Client retention and its opposite – the churn – are the subjects of major concern for companies. To ensure customer loyalty, companies deploy dedicated Customer Success teams, whose role is to create and maintain a relationship of trust with customers to ensure their satisfaction and, ultimately, avoid their departure (churn).
Customer retention is a strategic point
To illustrate the importance of customer retention or the percentage of customers that remain from one year to the next – let’s take the following example, illustrated by Bill Young VP at JPMorgan of 3 companies :
- Company A attracts 1000 new customers per year with a retention rate of 95% per year.
- Company B attracts 1,200 new customers per year, with a retention rate of 85%.
- Company C attracts 1,400 new customers per year for a retention rate of 75%.
Over 10 years, the retention rate of the customer base will result in an 18% revenue difference between company C and company A, even though company C sells to more customers each year.
For Guy Nirpaz, CEO of the Totango Customer Success platform, use and engagement will be the two main indicators of customer satisfaction and the perception of value that should be monitored by the teams. And as Christine Crandell explains, one way to combat churn is to replace regular contact with contextualized contact.
2. The advantages of regular and contextualized contact
No more monthly meetings to talk about the rain and the good weather (even if with climate change the subject is topical); customers want fewer meetings and demand that the few that they do have get scheduled at the right time.
Identify risk situations and act quickly
When adoption is not the expected one, instead of waiting for the next monthly item to be discussed, it is advisable to make an appointment quickly with your usual contacts to set up a plan and rectify the situation before it is too late!
In order to do so, a CRM or a tool dedicated to Customer Success will allow you to automate the organization of an appointment with your customer as soon as an event “alarm bell” is triggered. The earlier you act, the more effective this follow up action will be.
Bounce back from a satisfaction survey response
Customer Success Manager has between 10 and 50 accounts on average. Automating the appointment taking whether they are on a fixed date or dependent on the topicality of the account, becomes a necessity to avoid accounts falling through the cracks!
For example, quickly triggering an appointment following an NPS or CSAT note left by a customer allows teams to have an immediate return and understand the reasoning behind the client’s response. Above all, it shows his client that his opinion counts!
Ensure regular follow-ups with all clients
Obviously this is no question of removing regular meetings with your key accounts, especially when those meetings are so important for Quarterly Business Reviews that allow all stakeholders to discuss the good and the bad of recent company changes as well as possible movements in the company and the next steps for partnerships.
While some key clients will be seen very frequently, others may be seen at a lower frequency. In order not to mix things up and forget certain customers, it can be beneficial to automate the planning of these interviews according to the desired frequency. Remember, an abandoned client is an at-risk client!
Increase promotion and referral
Acquiring new customers is expensive except when these new customers are directly recommended by your current customers, who are happy with your product and talk about it around them. They are your ambassadors.
Identifying these user ambassadors can be done simply: when they respond 9 or 10 to an NPS survey, when they mention us on social networks or simply when their use of the service is recurrent and important. To work on your ambassador base, you need patience and persistence. It is important to exchange with these customers often.
Once these positive events have been identified, an automatic contact can be set up to offer them an exchange or even a meeting. The discussion will be an opportunity to show them that they are among the flagship users of the service and offer them to be part of your ambassador program.
These appointments automatically make it possible not to miss potential ambassadors by identifying the most positive customers and putting them forward!
Automating customer appointment scheduling avoids missing out on potential tensions or opportunities that may go unnoticed in the daily flow. And of course, it keeps you in regular contact with all your accounts.
Do you use any special tactics to plan your Customer Success meetings? Tell us about it!