The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Customer Success Leaders
A Customer Success Leader’s best habits are the ones that make all the difference. Here are 7 hand-picked habits that you too must inculcate if you wish to excel.
Especially for the B2B organizations, customer experience is the new buzzword for the SaaS industries. There has been a gradual shift in the mannerisms the CS teams exude in the level of engagements or commitments. It’s a shift any customer success leader can capitalize on, but only if they develop the means to monitor and manage long-term client experiences.
While building a successful CS team can be overwhelming it just might be the single most important part of your business, which is driven by a customer success leader. Yes, he is the one who sails the ship, rows the oar, and wears the chef hat. So what makes them special and what is their unique selling point (USP)?
Here are some of the battle-tested 7 habits of a highly effective customer success leader that can fundamentally change the economics of your business.
What do effective customer success leaders have in common? Yes, being proactive is. Simply put, they depend on some of the specific terminologies such as customer health score and churn indicators to identify the churn before it actually takes place. Most companies find out about churn when a customer cancels an account. But churn actually occurs when that customer becomes frustrated, stops logging in, and decides to quit using the product, which is long before cancellation.
How can a customer success leader be proactive about churn? They quickly rely on user intelligence to catch customers when they get stuck. And then deliver targeted engagements that help them overcome challenges and continue successfully on the customer journey.
It’s no surprise that each team within your company is likely focused on what is important to them. However, CS teams that align closely with sales and marketing. And product development teams not only improve adoption but also to revamp every stage of the customer lifecycle. Further, this enables customer success leaders to increase advocacy. They do that by referring to the marketing and sales materials such as case studies, reviews, and testimonials.
When you see a strong customer success leader who wreathes a stern connection with the cross-departments as well, there is a warm path to product development. And as the CS teams develop customer advocacy, sales begin to see the impact of customer success in no time.
Whether by journey stage, size, revenue, industry, or desired outcome, customer segmentation is a critical component of effectively scaling as your customer base grows. It can help CS team members specialize in different areas of the customer journey. This, in turn, speeds up a customer’s time-to-value.
Segmenting customers also means you can engage customers with relevant messages, when the time is right and move them more seamlessly into retention and beyond. This is a great tool used by an efficient customer success leader as well.
A great customer success leader showcases his professionalism by appreciating the efforts of users for providing valuable feedback about your product. You are going to get positive remarks if your product is reaching new heights. But that doesn’t mean you give up on offering a quality support to your customers.
Enhance brand credibility by sending them a few freebies such as relevant blog links or ebooks, which will be helpful for their business. Also, the much-needed appreciation takes them a long way, more than you could have expected.
Maintain a friendly, thoughtful atmosphere with your customers. It’s essential to understand that you are representing your company and the relationship should always grow in a positive direction. The best way is to show enthusiasm towards your customers to create a feeling of excitement about your service or product.
This helps to keep your customers motivated about your brand and improves customer success metrics. Positivity is the key that keeps you viable even at tough times. Trust me, it works wonders.
Maintaining a quality personal relationship with your customer plays a key role in getting positive feedback. Also, this ultimately proves useful for implementing an error-free environment for your product or service. But you need to develop a personal rapport with your customers first in order to get this done. Having a positive and mutually-beneficial partnership with your customers generates a positive brand reputation.
The best way to build customer rapport is by finding commonalities to build a foundation on. Questions such as ‘why is it important to build rapport with customers’ or ‘how to build rapport with customers’ could be tricky at first. But when coupled with diligence and positivity, it could be very much workable. Activities for building rapport with customers could be many, but what is common is the attitude of service.
You need trustworthy information in order to meet the exact KPIs for customer success. Mapping your customer journey–including the benefits and drawbacks customers face on each step–help you get that relevant information.
An effective customer success leader builds a detailed customer journey map. It shows the path of a customer (post-sale), the likely order of features they will adopt, the questions. And hurdles they face at each step, and the benefit they get each step of the way.
It is this map that becomes a foundational reference point as you brainstorm and prioritize ideas that bring that map to life in your customer success. It forces you to always think about the problem, benefit. Also, it looks into the psychology of the user rather than getting lost in best practices.
It is a known fact that hiring a customer success leader can be a daunting task. But it is not impossible to find the right candidates who will crush it with a boom. Before you begin on the journey to find the suitable one, carefully define the traits that you are looking for, the job description of the company, etc. Hire a candidate who has the 3 A’s – Accountability, Adaptability and Attitude. You will need all three as your company grows and your role scales.
Top 7 Traits of a Great Customer Success Leader! – Get insights into what does it take to be an exceptional customer success leader.
How to define the journey for a SaaS customer/client to get high retention – What is the customer journey all about/ Read on.
Originally Published August 4th, 2020, Updated December 30th, 2020
Simran hails from the content marketing backdrop with extensive knowledge in blogs, articles, and technical whitepapers in the non-fictional domain. She uses her 'gift of the gab' to explore new possibilities on her way and to make an exquisite impact on her readers. In her spare time, she likes to read journals on artificial intelligence or play with her cute kittens.