customer success

Why Focusing on Customer Success Will Pay Off in the Long Run

Focusing on customer success is a good way to make sure your business thrives. While getting new customers also generates revenue, being aware of your current clients’ goals and working with them to achieve them is more worthwhile in the long run. Oftentimes, companies don’t remember this and prioritize their own success, forgetting why they started out in the first place. But when the customers’ interests fall behind, businesses tend to fail.

Prioritizing client goals is key to providing great service and retaining clients. In fact, a study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Gainsight® discovered that almost 70 percent of companies with Customer Success (CS) programs increased customer retention. More than 9 out of 10 companies without CS programs feel that their customers suffer from issues that prioritizing CS could reduce. And a 5 percent increase in customer retention translates to a more than 25 percent increase in profit.

But what exactly does prioritizing customer success mean for startup companies? It means seeking out ways to help your customers achieve their goals. This is different from customer service, which centers on reacting to customer issues once they arise. Here is how we enact this with our own clients, and how you can turn customer success into business results for your own company.


Related: How to Hook Your Customers by Making Them the Hero of the Story

Customer success is a company-wide policy

One thing I’ve learned is that you’ve got to start with the customer experience and work backward. Prioritizing customer success helps customers succeed, but it also increases our own performance. We make sure that everyone from the product team to the marketing department is working with our clients’ best interests at heart. That means product developers are receiving feedback from customers and using it to improve service. It ensures that the team is learning and developing, and our customers are getting the best quality service possible.

By making customer success part of our company’s mission and core values, we make sure we develop a product that is focused on the success of the company using it.

Communicate to create happy customers

Communication is always at the heart of a good customer relationship.

In fact, 53 percent of people said that poor communication is the biggest issue they see in customer service.

That’s why we over-communicate to make sure our customers are getting the most they can out of our service.

We call every one of our new customers to make sure that they have everything they need and see if they have any questions. By doing this with your customers right when they purchase your product or service, you let them know that you’re there with them every step of the way — and that you’re putting their success above everything.

Great communication is one of the best ways to keep your customers happy. And happy customers mean retention and recommendations. Customers who are blown away with your attentiveness instead of just satisfied with your efforts are more likely to recommend your service to their peers. Unhappy customers who don’t feel like you’re prioritizing their success are likely to switch to one of your competitors – and tell others about your poor communication.


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Customer success means reduced turnover

Prioritizing customers’ successes also means a revenue boost for your company. If your customers reach their goals by using your product or service, they will stay loyal to you, which translates to continued revenue.

These customers are also good for upselling higher tiers of your products or services. If they see your dedication and the value your company provides, they’re more likely to upgrade to bigger packages and purchase add-ons. In fact, customer success evangelists believe that “the majority of the revenue from your customer happens post-sale.”

But reducing turnover by prioritizing customer success shouldn’t stop there: using the data you get from customer interactions is key. For example, we use data from customer surveys to adjust the priority of our product backlog. We also conduct focus groups and usability studies, and it makes a huge difference in our customer experience.

Prioritizing customer success to drive your own business’ results is nothing new, but making it your biggest priority is. Having a manager or department devoted to customer success is helpful, but embedding it into your company and across teams can help you go one step further to achieve both yours and your customers’ business goals.

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