Belong.co Doubles Account-to-CSM Ratios While Remaining High-Touch

“Gainsight provided us complete visibility into our customer lifecycle, automated key business processes, and made our CSMs more efficient.”
— Bharath Devanathan, CCO

In pursuit of hyper-growth, early stage startups can often put customer acquisition ahead of customer retention. But, Belong.co (“Belong” for short) was different. Even at a young stage, Belong’s priorities were clear—land premium logos, drive value through the product, retain, and expand.

Belong is the world’s first predictive outbound hiring solution that helps companies discover, engage, and hire top talent.

“As a fast-growing company, you can end up doing unscalable things, but we could not take that risk with Customer Success.”
— Vijay Sharma, Co-founder & CEO

Challenge

For a company that counts the likes of Cisco, Amazon, Accenture, PayPal, and Adobe among its customers, Belong required a high-touch approach to Customer Success without scaling up heavily on resources. To that end, Belong wanted to build, measure, and track the entire customer lifecycle. Such deep insights would enable CSMs to have high-value conversations to drive desired customer outcomes. A relatively small Customer Success team meant that CSMs were bombarded with a variety of tasks with no proper way keep track, prioritize and act on them in a manner that would create most impact for their customers.

“We now have more insight about our customers than we’ve ever had—every step of the lifecycle is measurable with Gainsight.”
— Manish M, Head of Customer Success Operations

Solution

To build a robust lifecycle, Belong started right from the Sales to Implementation handoff. Belong used Gainsight Surveys to automate the handoff process. After every closed deal, a Survey is triggered to the Account Executive (AE) on the account, and the AE’s responses are stored on the account. This Information is sent to the onboarding team as well as the CSM assigned to that account. This process ensures that every function in the company is aligned on the customer’s goals, even before the customer onboarding begins.

Belong uses Gainsight Playbooks to operationalize customer onboarding. Playbooks break down complex business processes into a simple series of steps or Calls-to-Action (CTAs). This helps Belong’s onboarding team improve the quality of their implementations and set up their customers for long-term success.

Belong’s CSMs use Gainsight’s Cockpit to manage their day. The Cockpit shows all CTAs that are assigned to them, and helps them prioritize their touches. Belong uses Gainsight’s Rules Engine to automate the process of bubbling up risks across their customer base. For example, every time a customer provides a detractor NPS, or an account’s health score turns red—a CTA is triggered to the CSM to take action. Belong also closely tracks the product usage data of a group of customers it calls “Power Users” raising a risk every time their usage goes below a certain threshold.

Belong uses Scorecards to pull in data from different sources to build an overall Customer Health Score. By viewing a dashboard of health scores across their customer base, Belong has centralized way of tracking how their customers are doing. Every time a customer leaves an NPS score, Belong closes the loop with an immediate follow up call to get feedback—continuing the high-touch experience for its clients.

“If our early gains are anything to go by, we believe the investment in Customer Success and Gainsight will pay us rich dividends in the long run.”
— Bharath Devanathan, CCO

Impact

By operationalizing its new customer lifecycle—from handoff to a repeatable onboarding process, to identifying risks and customer health—CSMs quickly recognized efficiency gains. Belong doubled the number of accounts managed by each CSM. Each CSM now handles 10-12 accounts, without compromising their high-touch approach to Customer

Success.

At Belong, the Customer Health Score is considered an important indicator towards renewal probability. The robust Customer Health Score is unifying the company’s view of a customer—all functions are in sync about how the customer is doing, and can agree on what’s expected of each department.

A common company goal across departments is driving a certain percentage of customers towards a green health score. This is helping drive a Customer Success mindset across the organization. Gainsight data is exposed to different departments at Belong—starting from their CEO to departments outside of Customer Success such as Sales, Marketing and Finance.