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3 Not-So-Secret Tips for Driving Customer Success

There are three secrets to driving success for your customer — and you probably already know what they are. They’re hiding in plain sight every day. They’re present every time you answer a customer’s question, upsell them on a new product, or send out an email. 

When done correctly, they’ll help you to not only drive success for your customers, but they’ll also enable you to succeed in your own role as a customer success manager as well. They are:

  1. Build relationships
  2. Deliver exceptional value
  3. Focus on your objectives

That’s it.

You’ve probably implemented at least one of these strategies before, but putting them all together on a consistent basis will help you build success for your customers over the long term. 

1. Build relationships

Every client phone call, email, and lunch meeting all have one thing in common: You’re interacting with a human being. 

And all of your customers want to have a good relationship with the person they’re buying something from. Research from the ESCP Business School found that up to 44% of customer loyalty is driven by trust

You can’t fake it —  you have to build it. Your customer will only trust you if you first start by building a relationship with them, by listening to what they want, and then offering the right services at the right time.  

It starts with being empathetic. You have to understand what a customer’s problem is and figure out how your company, product, or service can help solve it.

You may invest time into a customer and eventually come to the conclusion that it’s best to move on. That’s ok, not every client will end up being a profitable one.

But the initial work you put in on the front end — listening to what the customer wants and trying to solve their business needs — will not only help you to build trust, but it will also allow you to know when your company isn’t the best fit for a specific client. 

2. Deliver exceptional value 

This one seems obvious. But a lot of people overlook just how important this idea is.

Recent research shows that 77% of European customers will switch to a competitor after more than one bad experience. Let that sink in for just a moment. Three out of four customers will consider leaving a company if they encounter more than just one problem. 

That may seem harsh to hear, and it’s probably a bit unfair. 

But good customer success managers know that part of their job isn’t just to sell products and services — it’s also to make their customers’ lives just a little bit easier. 

And if your processes, products, or communication are making their lives more difficult, then they have every right to look elsewhere. 

The key to convincing them to stick around is to deliver exceptional value. They’ll love that you make their lives easier and you’ll love that they keep coming back to you for repeat services.

3. Focus on your objectives, not best practices 

It’s important to know the best practices for your industry. Understand what they are and how you can utilize them to drive growth for your customer, your team, and yourself. 

And then be willing to break some of those rules. 

A recent survey from Zendesk shows that 57% of European customers are willing to spend more money with companies that give them a top-notch customer experience

But what works for one company may not work for another. How you interact with one customer may not be the same way you interact with another. Adapting your specific approach to customers can make all the difference. 

Once you’ve taken the time to listen to your customer and figured out how to deliver exceptional value to them, forge your own path to achieving their goals. 

You don’t need to reinvent the wheel, but you should feel free to abandon some best practices when they don’t help you achieve your key objectives. 

Your boss will likely be keen on your adaptability too. More than half of European and UK businesses say that “being able to quickly adapt to the evolving needs of customers” is one of their highest priorities. 

One more thing…

There’s plenty more to be said about building customer success and you probably have your own go-list for how to achieve your objectives. 

The one thing to remember from all of this that the customer’s success is your success. Deliver what they need, when they need it, and do it over and over again. 

Do this, and you’ll both win.