Customer Success Priorities: Customers, Experience, Product
This list is to help you understand the higher order issues at play and the highest and best use of the time and resources of your CSM organization.
These three priorities represent the path from tactical firefighting toward proactively helping your customers achieve real success with your product.
Customer Success Priority #3: Assisting Customers
I know this one sounds contradictory because a Customer Success Manager’s (CSM) typical day is filled with helping customers. You're either moving good customers up to the next level, or taking at-risk customers and turning them around.
While these are very good things, and they will consume most of your time, that doesn't mean that they are the most important. Keep reading.
Customer Success Priority #2: The Customer ExperienceYou can't settle for fixing or helping a struggling customer. That’s a great thing to do, but the higher order thing to do is to figure out how they got into the place where they needed your help, and fix that.
The upstream and related processes need to be constantly refined.
- Is Sales selling your product to the right kind of customers?
- Is your implementation team preparing those customers for success?
- Are they coming out of training better equipped to be successful?
Find the reasons for their challenges and fix those upstream. That will lead to less fixing on your part.
Customer Success Priority #1: The Product
On the surface, this may not make any sense but think it through.
Refer back to Customer Success Law #5. If the customer isn’t loyal to you because you are so likable and helpful, and they’re not loyal to your company because it's just a logo on an invoice, then what are they loyal to? Ultimately, their loyalty is to your product, right? It has to be the product.
But even then it's not actually about your product... it's about the outcome your product delivers. They love the results that your product brings them. That's what they're loyal to.
So, if that’s true and the CSMs are the people closest to customers and how they use, or want to use, your product, doesn’t it make sense that their highest priority would be to help improve the product and the outcomes it facilitates or delivers?
It’s the only way you will survive.
The best CSMs in the world, no matter how many, cannot make up for a bad product.
In order to win, your product needs to be THE best one in your market. Make sure frequent product feedback and enhancement requests are part of your role as a CSM. It really is your highest priority
If you want CSMs that understand the real priorities of Customer Success and how to operationalize them, enroll them in Customer Success University now.