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Unpacking the Customer Success Snack Event in Amsterdam 2024

Learn about the takeaways from other workshops

Amsterdam recently played host to an enlightening gathering of customer success professionals. This unique event brought together industry experts, fostering engaging discussions that delved into strategies, challenges, and insights aimed at elevating the practice of customer success. Let’s take a closer look at the key takeaways from this dynamic event.

We have split the learnings in 6 topics.

  1. Nurturing Customer Centricity
  2. Advocating for Customer Success
  3. Scaling Customer Success in the Digital Age
  4. Strategic Customer Success Management
  5. Retaining Revenue Strategies
  6. Driving Organizational Change

1. Nurturing Customer Centricity

The first round table set the tone for the event, emphasizing the core principle of customer centricity. Sally and Pieter shared valuable insights on striking a balance between customer needs and business strategy.

Sally’s Insights:

Pieter’s findings & Practical examples:

Customer centricity is not just a department; it’s a company-wide culture that should start at the top. Sharing KPIs across all teams is crucial.

Practical example:
Do customer reviews (similar to deal reviews) that are owned by CS with sales & product where challenges/opportunities are discussed.

The CEO’s involvement, aligning sales incentives with successful customer onboarding, and viewing support as a revenue driver were highlighted.

Practical example:
Having the CEO own 2-3 customers (of course with help of a CSM) to really make them understand how customers are benefiting from and experiencing the value of a product.

Discussed challenges in making leadership customer-centric, focusing on gender dynamics and strategic involvement in client calls.

Practical example:
Dealing with an all male leadership team can be challenging for female CS leaders. A female mentor in a leadership position from another company can help in cases like these.

Key Takeaways:

2. Advocating for Customer Success

Advocacy for customer success being a value centre was the central theme of the second round table. Sally provided practical insights on making a compelling case for the significance of CS.

Sally’s Insights:

Advocated making a case for CS as a value centre, not just a cost centre.

Practical example:
Make the work you perform in CS as measurable as possible. The most obvious metrics being attributing the Revenue Number that was generated or retained in CS, maybe also in terms of # of licences or products. Especially the churn reduction value (revenue formerly at risk) and expansion revenue are hard facts that leaders and investors love to see! The use of Customer Success Qualified Leads (CSQL) is a great tool to do so.

Suggested using successful strategies from other departments for rewarding CS team members.

Practical example:
Every sales organization has their equivalent of a “President’s Club”, some form of very tangible rewards for great performance. Make sure that your CSMs are being celebrated equally for their impact. Even if it is not as straight forward to measure, create something similar to sales leaderboards, e.g. a visible scoreboard that tracks key CS metrics like CSat, NPS, or revenue retention rate. Highlight top performers and celebrate individual or team achievements. Recognize individual CS managers who consistently go above and beyond for their clients, maybe by nominating and announcing a monthly or quarterly “hero” and sharing their success story with the company. Last but not least, during all-hands meetings or company newsletters, publicly acknowledge the impact of the CS team. Share positive customer testimonials highlighting a specific CSM’s intervention and its positive outcome.

Key Takeaways:

3. Scaling Customer Success in the Digital Age

With the digital landscape evolving, the third round table focused on scaling customer success in the digital age. Diego shared insights on maintaining a baseline through Digital/Scaled Customer Success.

Diego’s Insights:

Discussed maintaining a baseline through Digital/Scaled Customer Success.

Practical example:
Set triggers and playbooks to include human interactions.

Highlighted how scaled customer success enables CSMs to be more proactive.

Practical example:
With tooling you can automate pro-active triggers based on user behaviour, you can take the guess work out of it and really focus on practive drivers.

Key Takeaways:

4. Strategic Customer Success Management

Strategic customer success management took the spotlight in the fourth round table. Diego, Pieter, and Flavia provided multifaceted insights on collaboration and client-focused strategies.

Diego, Pieter, Catherine and Flavia’s Insights:

Key Takeaways:

5. Retaining Revenue Strategies

Jose and Catherine led discussions on retaining revenue, focusing on engaging customers and maintaining consistent communication.

Jose and Catherine Insights:

A checklist for success:

  1. Save money, 
  2. Be transparent, 
  3. Express gratitude, 
  4. Provide real value, 
  5. Allow flexible payment options, 
  6. Maintain frequent communication, 
  7. Invest in relationships, 
  8. Offer loyalty discounts, 
  9. Be responsive, 
  10. Monitor satisfaction, 
  11. Demonstrate and measure value.

Key Takeaways:

6. Driving Organizational Change

The final round table explored strategies for driving organizational change, emphasizing tangible value and collaboration between teams.

Discussions included:

Key Takeaways:

Key Elements for Success

Several key elements for success were identified across the round tables, including proactivity, clear intentions, time management, fair incentivization, and quarterly planning.

Proactivity: Anticipate and attend to client needs before they emerge. Proactivity is the foundation for successful customer engagement.

Clear Intentions: Establish and devote targeted time and resources to achieve clear goals.  Clear intentions provide direction and focus for customer success initiatives.

Time Management: Organize and prioritize tasks across client portfolios for maximum efficiency. Effective time management maximizes efficiency and productivity.

Fair Incentivization: Offer equitable rewards for renewal efforts. Fair incentivization motivates the team to drive successful outcomes.

Quarterly Planning: Participate in risk assessments and strategic account planning sessions. Quarterly planning facilitates proactive decision-making and risk mitigation.

Conclusion:

In conclusion, the Customer Success Snack event in Amsterdam was a pivotal moment for customer success professionals. The event provided a platform for networking, knowledge sharing, and learning. Attendees left inspired, armed with tools, strategies, and connections to navigate the evolving landscape of customer success. The event not only showcased the power of proactive communication and cross-functional collaboration but also emphasized the crucial role of customer-centric strategies in achieving business success. The diverse perspectives, thought-provoking discussions, and sense of community fostered at the event contributed to its success, leaving a lasting impact on the attendees.

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Event recap video: