The question of who should manage selling to your customers is something I’ve been asked and seen posted online more than any other customer success question.
A lot of what’s written about customer success focuses on structuring and hiring teams, retaining customers, up-sell and usage. While all these areas are important, there’s little reference to a critical topic - onboarding your customers.
In the UX, marketing or product management space, the concept of “personas” or “buyer personas” are common. In essence, personas are a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer.
UX teams or product managers use them to ensure they design products that solve real problems and develop a narrative of how someone might use their product. Marketers and sales teams use personas to ensure their campaigns and content are appealing to the challenges, needs and wants of their intended audience.
I’ve always been on the look out for new interesting metrics to analyze the health of customers and customer teams and I’ve made a habit of collecting and testing them.
This post contains a pretty large list of some of the most valuable metrics and a little bit of commentary.
When writing this I found it helpful to structure the metrics under the following headings
As customer success becomes a major talking point, companies are scrambling to prioritise it and put together dedicated teams. Prioritising the customer is nothing new but the exact discipline of customer success is and it can be difficult to know what to look for when hiring for these teams.
What does “success” in customer success look like?
Usually it’s a relatively easy questions to answer - “our customers stick around” (retention) our “customers don’t leave” (churn) “we sell more stuff to our customers” (upsells / crossells).
This is definitely true and improving metrics like this should be key objectives of any CS team. However, churn, retention and increasing the install base are not very effective goals to focus on day to day.