In today’s world, the customer rules all. You’ve heard “the customer is always right,” and although this isn’t the entire truth, it does hold some validity. If your customers aren’t happy, your business fails. If their journey through becoming a buyer and a loyal brand advocate is disrupted, it could result in the loss of hundreds of current and potential customers (not to mention lost money). In fact, studies have shown that one happy customer tells an average of nine people about their experience, but an unhappy customer tells roughly 22. Have a few bad experiences and you can see how this could quickly add up. That’s why formulating a customer success plan is critical to the actual success of your business. But, what is customer success anyways?
It’s no surprise that business owners might not understand the true definition. Isn’t it just customer support? They’re the same right? Well, yes…and no. There’s a lot more to customer success than just resolving any issues that may come up. It involves planning, predictive analytics, the right customer technology and so much more.
Take a look below to see exactly what goes into the complicated world of customer success!
What is Customer Success?
So, let’s start at the beginning — what is customer success? Simply put, it’s a proactive approach that focuses on building relationships with current customers, working to understand their goals (what are they expecting of you?) and helping to meet those goals every day, so it keeps issues from ever arising with the customers. You must realize that every customer has unique goals, wants and needs. It’s critical that any business understands these differences and work to be the customer’s advocate. But customer success isn’t rocket science either.See how @Kilterly is taking #customersuccess to the next level with the help of #technology: Click To Tweet
How did customer success come to be? If the term seems new to you, don’t worry, you may not be alone. The idea of focusing on customer success is still a fairly new concept. Businesses say the need to retain customers, while also helping them see the full value and opportunities for further product offering throughout the customer cycle, has driven the need for customer success. The focus turned towards customer success where churn, retention and loyalty have become key footnotes. And it’s working. According to Brain & Co. great customer success programs combined with key account management and the proper focus on retention increase profits up to 95%.
Customer Success Technology
Customer success starts with the technology that you use. Since it’s always more money to bring in new customers rather than nurture the ones you have, the customer technology you use is key to ensuring that you are creating the proper customer success framework. The technology you choose can help with two specific aspects of your customer success journey:
- Increased productivity and scalability of operations.
- Better results in churn reduction, account expansion, and repeat purchases/renewals.
And one of the more important things that customer technology should be able to provide is predictions. By being able to alert you of customers who may need extra attention, you can stop a problem before it gets out of hand. The right technology helps you understand why the customer is at risk while also providing suggestions on what you can do. Most solutions generate alerts for accounts at risk of churning, but some can also predict which customers are likely to upgrade or likely to convert, giving you insight into every step of the customer journey. Tools are available to allow you to reach out to your customers on a consistent basis to build a strong relationship with them.
Predictive analytics is one important aspect of customer technology, but it’s not the only thing you should be paying attention to. There are many KPIs to keep an eye on to accomplish true customer success.
Using Customer Technology to Your Advantage
Regardless of the type of technology you have implemented or integrated into your systems, there is a set of standard capabilities that every customer success management team should have access to in order to accomplish their mission. Your best bet? Find a well-designed product and ensure that these categories are featured within its services:
- Customer record. Ensure that you have the ability to both access and edit/update data about the customer. Some systems maintain master customer records inherently within their applications, while others integrate with a CRM or other systems.
- Value management. Be able to monitor the return on investment (ROI) for the customer. Value Management includes deep churn analysis and reporting, tracking on up-sell and cross-sell potentials and analysis of sales pricing, commitments, etc.
- Customer intelligence. Report on and keep track of what your customer is going through. This can include everything from their business purchases to mergers, acquisitions and more.
- Data integration. If you aren’t integrated, then you aren’t being productive or effective. The customer technology should be able to accept data from and update other company systems such as the main CRM, customer support, the project management system, marketing automation tools, etc.
No matter how involved you are in customer success, the customer technology you use can make or break your efforts. Don’t settle for a system that doesn’t meet your needs or provide the insight you need to keep customer churn to a minimum. Instead, use a software the dives into your collected data, allowing you to take preventative measures while also proving key insights into the health of your customer relationships.
The search for a system like this is over! With Kilterly’s Customer Success Software you can drive significantly higher levels of customer retention and loyalty. While easy to use and implement, Kilterly takes customer relationship automation and the informative dashboard to a whole new level. Don’t wait until your customers and business are suffering, see how Kilterly works today!