It can be a bit of a balancing act between serving customers via product and CS team interactions. But both are important.
In this episode of Customer Success Leader, Vanessa Hannay, Sr. Director of CS at Muck Rack, helps us find the middle ground when it comes to guiding customers to success by filling the void between problems and solutions.
Striking a balance between customer interactions isn’t always easy. Vanessa says to not only be collaborative in the process but to also make sure customers are successful, we should understand:
Where customers are running into pain points
Where customers are achieving great success
How to capitalize especially off of the success that one customer has
How to help other customers realize the same
When you’re establishing relationships with customers, it’s important to build a foundation of trust. But that trusting relationship should work both ways.
So how do we build that foundation with customers?
Understanding as much from the sales handoff process as possible
Understanding why they purchased the tool
Supporting the initiatives that customers are looking to achieve
Trying to understand and improve the value of their work
Overall, we want to focus on asking ourselves two questions: 1. What is the value that we're actually providing back to the business and... 2. Can we put something justifiable and quantitative behind that value as well?
Pro tip: a leader or senior level person should really be able to excite the team and motivate them to use the tool in the way that both you and the customer want it to be used.
Vanessa has a cross functional team, but each team member is dedicated to specific tasks and responsibilities that lead toward customer success. The systems in place ensure that there's a high level of communication happening internally about each customer and what their experience is like throughout the process.
She structures her team like this:
One of team member is focused on customer communication
Keeping customers aware of new products and features within the platform
Keeping customers engaged
Another team member works strategically with our account management team
Managing all of the customer renewals
Helping them better understand customer health
The third team member on the success side is focused on onboarding.
Customers receive one to one dedicated training call upfront
Answering customer onboarding questions
“Our team's job is to really make their jobs easier, and as a result, improve our customers day to day as well. So we're definitely more strategic as a cross functional team.” — Vanessa Hannay
It’s a combination of tools and collaboration with the product team that allows for:
Taking things to the next level in terms of measuring account health
Helping the account managers fund opportunities for upsells why
Pointing out the opportunities or red flags are with different customers
Staying one step ahead of any issues or decreasing in value that a customer is realizing through the product
This carefully curated balance between CS teams and product teams is her company’s key to success and growth.
In this episode of Customer Success Leader, Vanessa talks to us about…
Striking a balance between customer interactions w/ the product & CS team
Tips on establishing trusting relationships with customers
Why losing a company isn’t losing a customer
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