AX-Based Coverage Segments: Customer Success Evolved

The only universal truth in Customer Success is that it’s always evolving. 

If you’re using the strategies and tactics popular even 3 years ago, you’re being left behind.

The more contact our ideas, frameworks, and methodologies have with customers,  the more we learn, and the more things need to evolve.

And over the past few years, that evolution has happened far more rapidly than anyone could have foreseen.

The world of Customer Success is Ripe for Disruption

Traditional approaches to Customer Success Management – often held tightly by those that have implemented them –  have left companies still grappling with high churn, higher contraction, low expansion, their limited resources stretched thin, and burnout and turnover among Customer Success Managers (CSMs).

But what if there was a fundamentally different way to think about your customers, a method so innovative that it could revolutionize how we approach Customer Success and capacity planning?

Enter Appropriate Experience (AX)-based Coverage Segments, the future of Customer Success.

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Pods in Customer Success vs. Sales: A Side-by-Side Comparison

Pods, a collaborative team structure, have been around for several years but have become increasingly popular in both Customer Success (CS) and Sales, especially as the former has become even more efficiency-focused in the past year.

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The Role of Pods in CSM Coverage Models: The Evolving Landscape

The concept of "pods" in Customer Success Management (CSM) continues to evolve, offering a flexible approach to structuring CSM teams within an overall coverage model strategy. Here's a breakdown of how pods can fit into your CSM coverage models: … [Continue reading]

Pooled CSMs: Benefits, Challenges, and Requirements for Success

The concept of pooled CSMs, where a pool of CSMs manage a portfolio of customers without dedicated account ownership, has emerged as an alternative approach to CSM org design. Here's a breakdown of the current thinking on pooled CSMs, including the … [Continue reading]

Beyond Touch Levels: Scaling Customer Success through Appropriate Experience (AX)

There's no such thing as a 'tech-touch' or 'high-touch' customer. There are only customers and their Appropriate Experience (AX). This is the modern take on Customer Success Management that leaders of world-class CS organizations operationalize … [Continue reading]

The Goal Discovery Framework for Customer Success Management

In the realm of Customer Success (CS), understanding customer goals is the cornerstone of building meaningful relationships and driving long-term value. Traditional customer interactions often involve direct communication, allowing for immediate … [Continue reading]

Storytelling in Customer Success: Use the Power of Goal Discovery

The Goal Discovery Framework is an invaluable tool for storytelling in customer success, enabling you to demonstrate value beyond the traditional focus on Return on Investment (ROI).  By combining data, storytelling, and this framework, … [Continue reading]

Customer Success Scaling: Capacity Planning and Resource Allocation

Customer success leaders constantly grapple with questions about resource allocation: "How many CSMs do we need?" "What happens with increased sales or customer upgrades?" While headcount is important, it's crucial to go beyond just numbers and truly … [Continue reading]

Bridging the Engagement Gap: Keeping Customers Actively Invested

Did you know that a significant portion of your customers, even those who seemingly appear satisfied, consider exploring alternatives before renewing their contracts? This statistic highlights a crucial reality in today's competitive SaaS landscape: … [Continue reading]

Build a Social Proof Machine: Consistently Generate Real Advocates at Scale

As a Head of Customer Success, you've heard the benefits of advocacy. You get that it's somehow the golden ticket—a game-changer that's supposed to turn the business flywheel faster than ever. But somehow, the magic hasn't happened for you. … [Continue reading]

The Untapped Potential of Social Proof through Earned Advocacy

Hold on a second. You're smart; you've got your finger on the pulse of Customer Success, and you're up to your ears in metrics, strategies, and buzzwords. But let's cut through the noise for a moment. If you’re not focusing on genuine, earned … [Continue reading]

From KPIs to Connection: Transforming Metrics Into Meaningful Relationships

Customer Success isn't a monolith; it's a symphony of moving parts. Think of it as a well-oiled machine with gears both large and small. The larger gears—your customer-level KPIs—offer those broad-stroke indicators that often make you nod in … [Continue reading]

5 Outdated Email Tactics You Need to Abandon in 2024

Whether you’re a Customer Success Manager (CSM), Sales Development Rep (SDR), or anyone tasked with engaging prospects or customers via email, you know all too well that sinking feeling. You craft an email, inject it with what you think are … [Continue reading]

Every Department Must Recognize the Value of Customer Success

Customer Success teams continually strive to advocate for their significance, often finding themselves undervalued by other departments. Heads of Customer Success are no strangers to this feeling, and while the importance of their roles is … [Continue reading]

Retention: Shifting from Reactive to Proactive to Stop Chasing and Start Leading

Let's get real. You're swamped, your team is overwhelmed, and you're juggling the constant demands of retaining customers while chasing that elusive long-term success. You're in firefighting mode—again. You know you need to shift from a … [Continue reading]

Why High Usage Doesn’t Guarantee Customer Success

You're feeling pretty good about your customer engagement metrics. The data shows that users are logging in daily, clicking around, and seemingly making the most of your platform. But hold on. Your churn numbers are still concerning. … [Continue reading]

Scaling Your Customer Success Team Without Losing Control

You've built your Customer Success team from the ground up, and you're rightfully proud of it. You've always had your hands on the steering wheel, ensuring smooth rides for your clients. But now your team is growing. The very thought of … [Continue reading]

The Art and Science of Continuous Goal Alignment in Customer Success

Every Customer Success Manager (CSM) and Head of Customer Success has felt it at some point: the nagging sense that although Goal Discovery is essential, something is missing in the process of keeping those goals continually aligned. You know … [Continue reading]

Goal Discovery: The Essential Task You Never Had Time for (Until Now!)

You get it; Goal Discovery is essential. It's not just another buzzword or a fleeting trend in Customer Success. It's the foundation of everything we aim to accomplish with our clients. But here's where the frustration mounts: you have … [Continue reading]

Aligning Customer Success and Sales: Bridging the Great Divide

You know the feeling – it’s a shared frustration among many in Customer Success. Another seemingly 'bad fit' customer is passed to us, and we're left questioning the Sales team's understanding of what a good fit really is. It's easy to think: … [Continue reading]

Motivating Action: The Hard Truth of Driving Customer Engagement

Every Customer Success Manager (CSM) knows the struggle: you have an incredible product that can truly enhance the work of your customers, but they resist. They feel overwhelmed, underprepared, or simply unwilling to take on the new … [Continue reading]

Customer Retention: Proactive, Reactive, and At-Risk Analysis

How often have you found yourself scrambling at the last minute to save an at-risk account, pouring time and resources into what could often be a losing battle? You’re not alone. Many Customer Success Managers (CSMs) fall into the trap of … [Continue reading]

Navigating Partner Success in a Multi-Channel World

Customer Success Management (CSM) is challenging enough when you're dealing with direct customer relationships. But when partners are brought into the picture, it adds a whole new layer of complexity to the process. As CSMs, how can we navigate … [Continue reading]

Unlocking Potential: How to Allocate Customers to CSMs

Any seasoned leader in Customer Success knows that balancing the right resources and setting the proper groundwork is crucial to effective customer management. As a newly appointed head of Customer Success, you might be asking yourself, "What … [Continue reading]

RevOps Evolved: The Key to Rapid, Exponential Revenue Growth (2024)

The essence of successful business lies in the ability to unlock consistent, efficient growth. But amidst the pressures of targets, competition, and shifting market dynamics, the struggle to optimize revenue operations and foster seamless … [Continue reading]

Redefining Email Engagement: New Metrics for a New Era (2024)

Are you tired of sending emails that are lost in the void, never to be seen or acted upon? Emails meant to drive essential action from your customers or prospects – only to receive nothing but silence in return. You're not alone. For Customer … [Continue reading]

Understand, Classify, and Effectively Analyze Churn

Understanding customer churn can be one of the most challenging, yet essential elements for the success of any SaaS business. Knowing why customers leave, how to anticipate these departures, and ultimately, how to prevent them, can make the … [Continue reading]

Customer Negotiation: Discounts, Retention, and Value

Are your customers frequently requesting discounts? Are you left wondering if reducing your prices is the only way to retain their business? If you're a Customer Success Manager (CSM) or a Head of Customer Success, you've undoubtedly … [Continue reading]

The Art of Objection Handling in Customer Success

Imagine this: You're all set for a critical meeting with a customer, the agenda is clear, and you're brimming with solutions. But the customer postpones. Or worse, they decline the meeting altogether. It's not an uncommon scenario in the … [Continue reading]

Driving Exponential Growth: The Art of Selling to Existing Customers

In the rapidly evolving business world, the focus is often skewed towards acquiring new customers. However, the real magic happens when we tap into the potential of our existing customer base. Welcome to the realm of 'Selling to Existing … [Continue reading]

NRR Panic: The Rollercoaster Ride You Never Saw Coming

NRR is tanking. The "North Star" is falling! Time to panic? Yes. Unless you understand what's really going on. NRR Defined Net Revenue Retention - NRR - is the percentage of revenue retained from existing customers in a defined time … [Continue reading]

Motivation vs. Discipline: How Knowing the Difference Skyrockets Customer Engagement

When you’re working with customers, whatever your role (CSM, Sales, Account Management, Consultant, etc.), you may find yourself acting as a coach. To be an effective coach, you need to strike the right balance between motivation and … [Continue reading]

Why CSM Positioning is so Important (and How to Fix it)

The customer’s perception of why the Customer Success Manager (CSM) exists in their world, and how the CSM is distinguished from other Individual Contributors (ICs) and Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) the customer will work with, is called … [Continue reading]

Customer Status: The Hidden Motivator You Can’t Ignore

In Customer Success we're always concerned with the status of our customers. We keep track of their health score, their adoption velocity, usage, satisfaction, and other metrics that tell us whether or not they're successful. And while all of that is … [Continue reading]

The Power of Curiosity in Customer Success

As a Customer Success Manager (CSM), it's easy to fall into the trap of just going through the motions with your customers. You have a list of tasks to complete, metrics to track, and goals to achieve. But what if I told you that being curious could … [Continue reading]

Creating Customer Success Playbooks with ChatGPT

Customer Success is always under pressure to optimize (and reduce the expense of) everything. Many people see ChatGPT as a way to streamline Customer Success processes like preparing for customer meetings or  literally creating those processes … [Continue reading]

ChatGPT or Bing: Which AI Tool is Best for Customer Success

Generative Artificial intelligence (AI) like ChatGPT - and now Bing Chat - is transforming the way we communicate and work, especially in Customer Success. These AI-powered tools offer unique benefits to Customer Success Managers (CSMs) and … [Continue reading]

Customer Success Pros: Stay Ahead of the Game with ChatGPT

As a Customer Success professional looking to stay relevant in your field and be the best at what you do, one emerging tool that you need to be aware of - and start using - is ChatGPT. ChatGTP is a powerful AI program that has the potential to … [Continue reading]

ChatGPT in Customer Success: Generative Output to Desired Outcome

Generative AI, like ChatGPT, is a powerful technology that has revolutionized the way we approach various fields, including writing, coding, music composition, and even Customer Success. ChatGPT uses artificial intelligence to generate high-quality … [Continue reading]

Stop Teaching Your Customers to Ignore You! A Guide to Effective Customer Engagement

Customer Engagement still relies on email as the primary channel for most businesses. But what happens when the emails you send are ineffective, causing decreased opens and interactions, increased unsubscribes, and a tarnished sender … [Continue reading]