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Customer Success – 8 Ways To Drive More Interest From Investors

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Forbes recently published an article that I wrote with Lawton Ursrey highlighting the positive effect customer success can have on growth stage businesses. Forbes Article Link

Here is an excerpt from the article:

By widening your focus beyond just new sales and adding a customer success element to your business early in your growth, you’ll ensure you can effectively align company resources, minimize lost opportunities, and maximize revenue. This alignment will drive referrals, upsells, cross sells, and retain the customers you have so that you can continue to grow.

When considering a shift into customer success, here are a few things every business should do:

  1. Take a holistic approach to customer success and align the company vision with the strategic and tactical elements of each team.
  2. Put “Customer Success” at the center of your customer process. Give your VP of Customer Success veto power on deals that are a bad fit for the company.  This reduces retention issues based on poor sales fits.
  3. Ensure that support, sales, product management, R&D, and product marketing have an open and regular dialog. Make sure they all have mutual goals that align with the Customer Success Team. The entire company needs to be on board with the true value of the Customer Success Team as they are the front line of the most important part of the company’s success: the customers.
  4. Ensure that all teams stay on board with the culture shift. Incent teams across the organization to erase functional lines and work together to achieve the customer-first goals of the company.
  5. Map the customer journey end-to-end and re-align internal talent to match the journey.
  6. Don’t just gather data,use Make sure teams have access to tools like Totango which will provide each team the exact same data sets.  The data should include objective elements of the customer journey such as usage data, ticketing, and financial information.
  7. Use real-time reporting and action/event triggers to drive nurture campaigns and custom automations for marketing campaigns. Timed campaigns are dated.  Campaigns should be triggered by actions taken by customers rather than subjective communication timelines.
  8. Compensate teams for driving Customer Success goals forward. Sales growth, churn reduction, referral rate, error reduction, service request reduction, and case study commitments are all easy places to measure performance and reward all teams as you reach milestones to keep Customer Success top-of-mind.

Hobbs, Bill.  Lawton Ursrey. “8 Things You’re Not Doing to Attract Investors.” 8 Things You’re Not Doing to Attract Investors. Forbes, 16 Dec. 2015. WEB. 17 Dec. 2015

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