Well, it is just about okay if your best-laid plans hit a rock bottom. It is quite alright if things don’t turn out the way you envisaged. Figure something else out and try again. In the case of customer success, these rock bottom or what we call as the pitfalls could make the hair-line difference between churn and customer stickiness.
To make sure, you do not fall trap to such post-sales pitfalls, here are some battle-tested ideas that would help you combat churn and showcase the best practices at every point of the post sales customer lifecycle to ensure success.
Strategy #1: A well-furnished Onboarding with valued training
The first foray for a new customer is the process of onboarding. It gives them a hint of vendor relationships that they will be delving into.
Therefore, the target should be to sternly inculcate value with the new customer. As a Customer Success Manager, you must ensure that the customer should not feel too rushed. If the content given is too opaque, they might not fully benefit from the process.
Also, if it is too impersonal, the customer would not easily connect. Hence, you must inarticulate and tailor every onboarding experience in such a manner that all of them are able to derive value.
Strategy #2: Upsell and then Expand
Always be on the lookout to find more engagements. A missed opportunity is like withdrawing yourself from a lottery. Try to communicate and engage with your clients as professional as possible. Inconsistent or irregular check-in calls could be a major drawback.
With that easy-to-fix issues could easily slip away from your hands and hence cause a hindrance to your upsell, gradually. A quick tip for expansion comes when a customer sees a tangible value in the company, in its vision and mission.
Additionally, post sales you can develop the best proposals for individual customers based on their goals and concerns. This could increase NPS score and engagement too.
Strategy #3: Action at the point of Renewal
When it hits the renewal stage, a customer success manager’s action revolves around the task of pushing the customer to re-purchase the service again. The best practice you can do is to be aligned with the sales. It is predominantly the sale steam best-laid that can bring about tactical expertise and negotiating techniques.
Aside from this, develop deep relationships with your customers right from the stage of onboarding. Their entire journey should be meaningful and fruitful. Only then is the chance where they would want to re-purchase your service. The success of the renewal strategy hinges on overcoming these rock bottoms and imbue the customer’s journey with satisfaction.
Strategy #4: Excellent Knowledge Transfer from Sales to Customer Success
Sometimes, the business targets and the desired outcomes of a new customer are not always aligned correctly or in simpler terms, it is not directed from the sales team to the customer success team.
Simply put, the customer success leader might not be fully aware of the promises that were discussed between the new customer and the sales. For that, a CSM should ensure that the knowledge transfer from the sales, reaches the customer success even before the first kick-off call. This way, the CSM is fully aware of the internal discusses and later paves the way to a smooth road moving forward.
Strategy #5: A game plan for product usage
When your product is out in the market, your customers are shelling out a good amount, in return, they would expect a clear process of how to use that product. Hence, it is of high pertinence to ensure that the product tutorials, user manuals, the requisite block of FAQs, and also some relevant case studies should be available in the market in the meantime for exploring and a better understanding of the product.
The product developers should have a fair say and understand that launching the products online, without any of the aforementioned deals would not add a positive value to the post sales function and this could actually turn out to be a major pitfall. Stay alert, and stay sharp. As you see competition is always cut-throat.
Strategy #6: A Customer Service which counts
It is critically important to have a customer service that responds immediately, as that accounts to be one of the deciding factors for the customers to re-purchase your product or service after the term ends. And how would you want them to continue their term with you? Excellent customer service comes to rescue then.
As a matter of fact, a major pitfall could be avoided if you would not lose focus on the existing customer base. Retain the current customers who were once the foundation of your customer base, as well as pay equal heed to the new ones.
Strategy #7: Target the Market
With a cool mind, decide and determine what exactly your product’s target market is. This should be done way before you develop the product. Without this, all your efforts would come to vain.
Begin with defining the space to position your product, research and know more about your target audience, what they demand from you, understand their needs, and delve deep into consumer behavior and the requirements needed behind it. Over and above, you can create an informative blog to raise curiosity and attract the attention of the targeted audience.
Well, accept the fact that it is okay to make mistakes. But then, you must learn to collect yourself and learn from those mistakes. Hope, this blog helps you avoid the major post sales pitfalls, along with some of the best practices that you can practically use to stay away from the mess.
With the strategies discussed above, you as a customer success manager could be well informed to overcome any such issue at the earliest. Trust your instinct and use some of these practices and pave the way to the pinnacle of success.