What's the best Customer Success solution?
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It’s fall, and you know what that means: the leaves are changing color, pumpkin spice lattes are back in season, and Gainsight is being recognized as a “Leader” on the G2 Grid for Customer Success. It’s our fifth-straight time receiving this honor and far from us taking it as a given, we’re even more grateful than ever. Achieving Leader status on the G2 Grid means more to us than any journal’s recognition, because it’s entirely based on our customers’ online reviews. Our business is customer success, and if we’re not delivering on that promise for our customers, we don’t deserve to be in business at all. That’s why it’s especially meaningful when those customers take the time to post about their experiences on sites like G2. But as important as this report is to us, it’s even more important to people evaluating customer success platforms. The G2 Grid For Customer Success is a completely unbiased, scientific aggregation of customer reviews and third-party market data. It evaluates all the software providers in the category across usability, scalability, data security, and much more. Every review is stringently verified by G2 and the aggregate scores are blended with a market presence score to […]
We recently had the opportunity to join Gainsight for a webinar about Finding Friction in Your User Journey and How to Fix It. One of the key aspects of fixing user friction is understanding how to prioritize that work along with things like new feature development. At FullStory, we’ve landed on a successful process for prioritizing our product efforts called the 9-Blocker and we shared a little bit about this process in the webinar. The 9-Blocker helps us prioritize medium and large arcs of work, and we think it might help you, too. When in Doubt, List It Out Each quarter at FullStory we use the 9-Blocker to help us assess our top priorities. Our product management team creates a list of all the product improvements, potential new features, and critical bug fixes that need to be made. The list is compiled from customer feedback received from sales, success, and support teams, as well as opportunities and improvements identified from our internal research and analyses. Once Product Management knows all the potential work items at play, the real work begins. The 9-Blocker begins with a thorough evaluation of each issue and opportunity that’s based on the relative value and cost of solving […]
The new year is right around the corner, which means time is running out to get your budget in order. Customer growth is the goal of every business, but budgeting for a growth-driven strategy in 2020 is as difficult as ever. Customer growth is constantly evolving as new advancements in technology are made. This means that what worked last year may not be enough to keep up this year. With that in mind, I’ve put together a list of five areas to budget for in order to accelerate customer growth for the upcoming year. Don’t let underbudgeting destroy your growth strategy! How to budget for customer success The key to budgeting for customer success is agile planning. Understandably, this can seem difficult to do when trying to create a concrete budget. One of the workarounds to this problem is to create a budget that conforms to your goals, not the other way around. This begins with defining whether your budget is modeled around an entering or an exiting cost target—maybe you want to have a budget at X%, but first, that could require starting at a budget of Y%. From there, you can take into account your major initiatives for […]
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What is product-led growth, exactly? Travis Kaufman, VP of Product Growth at Gainsight, defines the buzzword and shares growth-boosting best practices. This Q&A is an excerpt from our webinar, Ask an Expert Q&A: How to Build Products That Drive Growth. You can listen to Travis and Gainsight’s VP of Product, Ciara Peter, share their expertise in full here. Long gone are the days when sales-led or marketing-led growth reigned supreme. Now, 80% of consumers prefer to do business with a company that offers personalization, making product experience intimacy vital to growth. Product-led growth uses this intimacy to drive user acquisition, expansion, and retention from the product itself. The result? A superior user experience. Let’s take a look at some tips to create your own product-led growth strategy. Catch Travis onstage at Product Marketing Summit in San Francisco where he’ll continue the discussion on product-led growth. Q: What qualities should a product team that is focused on driving growth possess? Travis: Historically, we would create enterprise software, enable our go-to-market team, and the product itself was treated like a good you would pick up off the shelf and hand to someone else to use. The challenge we faced was that we ended up with […]
You know those moments in life where you feel like you reached the “next level” in your evolution as a human? I remember all of them vividly—moments like: The day my (now) wife agreed to go out with me The day I got accepted to college The day I got into Bill Simmons’ Mailbag Perhaps not-exactly-at-the-same-level-but-close is the day an acquaintance said, “I can get you a Superhuman invite if you want one.” Is this meme still a thing? Superhuman, in case you aren’t as obsessed with Twitter as I am, is the uber-popular and exclusive paid email client that purports to radically improve email productivity. As someone who can’t sleep without “inbox zero” and who aspires to respond to people as quickly as I can, I have always been intrigued by new email startups. Unlike the fate of most past ventures to “fix email,” Superhuman seems to actually be working, as judged by its big funding round from Andreessen Horowitz. A big part of this is due to the amazing product experience from UI speed to keyboard shortcuts. I was pleasantly surprised to learn that in addition, part of Superhuman’s success is its unique approach to onboarding. Superhuman took […]
If you’re using these old school methods, your product instrumentation is suffering. Today’s product teams have easy access to tools that help them track every user action (or lack thereof). I’ve worked in the world of tech and SaaS products for over 18 years and let me tell you, it wasn’t always that way. Automated product instrumentation is game-changing. I’m still in shock when I hear about the archaic processes people are using today. Manual logging. Querying your Dev team. Sacrificing the user experience for more data. (If your product analytics or engagement tool requires you to do any of these, that’s a red flag). In this article, I’ll give my perspective on the importance of automated product instrumentation and the shortcomings of older methods still in use today. Jump to a section. Why is Product Instrumentation Important? Outdated Product Instrumentation Methods The Benefits of Automated Product Instrumentation Do I Need Automated Product Instrumentation? Why is Product Instrumentation Important? Product instrumentation is the process of mapping out your product. If you’re planning to use a product analytics and product engagement solution, you’ll need to complete this process before you can actually use your solution. Product instrumentation requires you to create a model […]
Revenue. It’s the bottom line for any business. But in the new economy, it’s not enough to build a company on one-time transactions. Today’s customers demand successful outcomes and great experiences, and if you don’t provide them, the market is fluid enough to meet their needs when you can’t. But if the economy is operating under new rules, how are you supposed to grow your revenue through renewal, expansion, and beyond? This Essential Guide to Recurring Revenue is your all-in-one primer on how to understand modern recurring revenue relationships. It has detailed breakdowns on the different types of recurring revenue business models, all the metrics required to benchmark success, and best-practice strategies to compete and win in the subscription economy. In this ebook, you’ll learn: The underlying drivers of the recurring revenue economy. The most common challenges recurring revenue businesses face. Recurring revenue metrics and how to calculate them. The difference between lean and expensive revenue. Revenue operations tactics. What systems and processes you need to grow recurring revenue. And more!
What is a customer? It’s a word I’ve typed so often in my job here at Gainsight I find myself accidentally typing it on autopilot half the time I type any word that starts with the letter “c.” It’s probably the most used noun on our website and blog, ahead of “outcomes” and “success.” But everyone knows what a customer is, obviously. I mean, we do, right? It’s a person who buys a product or service, right? Except it might not be a person, though. It could be a group of people—a company. Companies can be customers in B2B. And in B2B, it might not even be someone who literally “buys” your product. It could just be someone who uses your product, even though they weren’t involved in the buying process and they didn’t pay for it. In fact, some of your customers might not have paid for your product or service! After all, there are thousands of business models—if you buy something from a third party on Amazon, whose customer are you? The seller’s? Amazon’s? And in B2B, if you sell in the channel, who’s your customer—the partner or the buyer? Prospect Relationship Management But it’s alright, because even […]
Four out of five B2B companies expect to compete based on CX alone. But will they actually? For most of them, the answer is no. It should come at no surprise that compared to B2C, B2B lags in customer experience (CX). Increased customer expectations, especially when it comes to recurring revenue, mean that B2B companies can’t just drag and drop B2C CX strategies—even mid-touch customers are far too complex and spend far too much in ARR for that to work. That’s because B2C CX is typically reactive. You capture direct customer feedback and respond when they are upset or leverage it when they’re happy. Benchmark and repeat. Unfortunately, B2B orgs can’t expect to compete in this reactive model. In order to maintain positive trends, they must: Mix direct feedback with indirect and behavioral signals. Keep up with complex customer journeys and tailor engagements to multiple stakeholders. Identify root causes of dissatisfaction and solve using cross-functional playbooks. And on top of all that, you need to be concurrently driving desired outcomes in your customer base. Not gonna lie—it’s going to take systems, process, and data. Tip 1: Keep an eye on account health B2C CX has traditionally been built around a central […]
Everyone has parts of their job that they love and parts that they loathe. The parts that energize you and the parts that drain you. As you grow in your career, you’ll also grow deeper in understanding which activities are doing what. My tank is refueled by interacting with people. My favorite part of the job of running Gainsight is the diversity of people with whom I get to interact across all our stakeholders—teammates, their families, clients, partners, investors, and even folks in our community. Yes, I am definitely an “E” in Meyers-Briggs language. So when I saw a recent HBR paper that said the typical CEO spends 5.6% of their time with clients, I was shocked. In fact, I was so surprised that we asked an intern to look at my calendar and determine what my percentage is. Turns out for me it was 17%. That averages out to roughly 11 clients a week, 45 clients a month, and over 500 client meetings a year. If you are a leader looking to meet more clients, this article is for you! If you’re looking at it and imagining how draining it would be, you’re probably figuring out whether you’re an introvert or […]
It’s budgeting season, which means it’s time to figure out the nuts and bolts of how you’re going to take your team from customer success to customer growth. As we learned in last year’s webinar, budgeting is about investing wisely. It’s not about how much you spend, it’s about how much you get for your dollar. This year, we’re going to be looking closely at how CS teams can become a growth center in 2020 and beyond. To do that, we’ll be looking at some of the highest-leverage areas for growth, including professional development, CS Ops, top line and bottom line investment, and more. Get actionable budgeting strategies to help you: Identify the right top-line metric—GRR or NRR Get “bang for your buck” in operations investments Benchmark CS costs to improve your bottom-line numbers Quantify your professional development ROI And much more
Signing new customers costs five times as much as retaining old ones. So why are businesses failing at renewals? One of the most common problems I see in forecasting renewals is that businesses simply don’t know how to leverage their data in the right ways. They treat it the same as they treat sales and are stumped when their forecasts show up as less than accurate. That’s because forecasting renewals is a whole different game than forecasting regular net-new sales. You can’t just use your existing sales forecasting tool because forecasting renewals require you to leverage a completely different set of data. Remember in the movie Space Jam, when Bugs Bunny gave his teammate’s the water bottle with “Michael’s Secret Stuff”? After they drank it, they went from losing horribly to whooping some major monster behind. Think of a renewal system as your very own “Secret Stuff”. Chances are, like Bugs’ team, you don’t really understand it or how it does what it does—but unlike Bugs and Michael Jordan, our Secret Stuff is actually real. Ready to score some three-pointers? Check out how you can forecast renewals like a pro. Leverage Machine Learning One of the greatest perks of the machine takeover […]