Archives for May 2017

How to Define Roles in Customer Success Management

Most companies just getting into Customer Success start by defining roles (well, one… Customer Success Manager), then they try to figure out the size of the “book of business” the CSM should handle, etc. That’s wrong.

But I won’t leave you hanging! Nope, I’ll tell you the correct way to define roles in a Customer Success Management organization.

Hint… it all starts with proper Customer Segmentation

For context, on Friday, May 19, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Customer Success: High/Low/No Touch Customer Segmentation

The traditional Customer Success method of simply looking at what a customer pays us and giving them a particular level of ‘touch’ is old and outdated. It’s time to logically segment customers based on Appropriate Experience (AX).

For context, on Friday, May 19, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Customer Success: Incorporating High/Low/No Touch into Onboarding

Proper Customer Onboarding isn’t done to prevent churn; it’s done to ensure the customer achieves their Desired Outcome. Retention comes from that. But what is “proper” customer onboarding? Let’s find out.

For context, on Friday, May 19, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Customer Success: How to help Salespeople with Customer Segmentation

The age-old issue of Customer Success and Sales alignment, only this time focused on segmentation.

This is my attempt to definitively address this eternal quandary.

For context, on Friday, May 19, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Customer Success: Determining Which Customers on which to Focus

From a Customer Success perspective, this is the wrong question to ask.

You must “focus” on all customers since proper Customer Onboarding is critical for all customers to achieve their Desired Outcome.

The way you operationalize around all of your customers to ensure they’re all Onboarded in an Appropriate way will come down to logical Customer Segmentation.

For context, on Friday, May 19, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Customer Success: Who Should Handle Upsells?

One of the great Customer Success questions – regardless of how many answers are given or by whom – that refuses to ever actually be answered is who should handle upsells… sales or Customer Success.

This is my attempt to definitively answer this question.

For context, on Friday, May 19, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Customer Success: How to Reset Mismanaged Expectations

Carefully. One of the biggest drains on Customer Success Management resources is customers that have not had their expectations properly managed and having to work around that.

Avoid that where you can by doing things correctly from the outset, but if you’re there already, maybe this will help you.

For context, on Friday, May 19, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Customer Success: Customer Engagement Across the Entire Lifecycle

Customer Success is when your customers achieve their Desired Outcome through their interactions with your company. Those interactions occur across the entire lifecycle.

I define Customer Success Management as the process of moving customers toward their ever-evolving Desired Outcome. Again, across the entire lifecycle.

You can’t have Customer Success without engagement across the lifecycle.

For context, on Friday, May 19, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Customer Success: Working with Customers that don’t like Technology

Luckily this type of thing is rare, but with Customer Success as our operating philosophy, or Customer Success Management as our operating model, we need to work within the confines of our customer’s comfort zone… not ours.

This is a thought-provoking question with, hopefully, an equally thought-provoking answer.

For context, on Friday, May 19, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Customer Success: How to Tell Customers What to Do

For many Customer Success Management teams, it’s easy to fall into the trap of ‘just let your customers figure it out.’

In fact, it’s easy to think that’s in their best interest.

Leave them alone and they’ll discover what they need to on their own. But in most cases, that’s the exact opposite of what you need to do.

For context, on Friday, May 19, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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How to Get Customers to Help Define Engagement Models

Don’t hide from your customers. Don’t pretend you know everything. Talk to your customers and figure out from that discovery process what your engagement model should look like.

You can then extrapolate segment-based models or, for some customers, create unique engagement models just for them (if it makes sense).

For context, on Friday, May 19, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Customer Success-driven Marketing: Targeting Offline Customers

Customer Success should drive everything your company does, including sales and marketing.

When it comes to targeting customers that aren’t online, first, I’d push back on the assumption that your customers aren’t online.

Second, I’d remind you that Customer Success-driven Marketing means understand the customer’s Desired Outcome so you can craft a message that gets their attention and then understanding where to put that message so they see it.

Let’s dig in, shall we?

For context, on Friday, May 19, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Lincoln Murphy Customer Success AMA Transcript and Video – May 19, 2017

On Friday May 19th, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video is embedded below, along with the questions that were asked and my answers.

Yep, if you don’t want to watch or listen, no problem! I got the entire AMA transcribed (and cleaned it up a bit for readability, added links, etc.) and posted that below. I answered 13 questions in great detail.

Follow me on Facebook so you can find out the next time I do one.

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The Process for Discovering your Customer’s Desired Outcome

Customer Success is when your customer achieves their Desired Outcome through their interactions with your company.

Desired Outcome is Required Outcome + Appropriate Experience.

Each customer segment will have its own Appropriate Experience (AX) – even if they share the same Required Outcome – and this will tell you the type and level of coverage (humans – required skills, characteristics, etc. – plus technology).

But below I go into more detail about the process and why it’s critical for you to understand…

For context, on Friday, May 5, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video (audio only… sorry) is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Customer Success: How to Close the Feedback Loop with…

Customer Success Management, Marketing, Sales, Product, and the Executive team all have unique information about the customer.

This includes how the customers talk about what they do, how they talk about and use our product, how any of this aligns with our strategic direction (or not).

So creating feedback looks among all of those parts of the company is part of Customer Success Management.

For context, on Friday, May 5, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video (audio only… sorry) is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Customer Success and Upgrading Grandfathered Customers

If you’ve been in business for any amount of time, you likely have customers that you’ve “Grandfathered” into old pricing tiers or feature sets that are obsolete now.

How can you get Grandfathered customers to move to your current pricing model in a customer-positive way?

I have some ideas for you…

For context, on Friday, May 5, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video (audio only… sorry) is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Customer Success in Early-stage Startups

Early-stage startups think Customer Success isn’t for them. Wrong!

Not only is Customer Success for startups (along with established companies), it’s also your key to growth without the friction of churn and bad-fit customers distracting you from rapid expansion.

Let’s talk about how to apply Customer Success in early-stage startups.

For context, on Friday, May 5, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video (audio only… sorry) is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Drawing the Line between Customer Success and Support

How do you draw the line between Customer Success and Customer Support?

This seems like a logical question until you understand the reality behind operationalizing Customer Success Management.

Let’s dig in…

For context, on Friday, May 5, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video (audio only… sorry) is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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The best Customer Success Management (CSM) Software

What is the best Customer Success Management (CSM) Software on the market today?

As you might imagine, that question comes up frequently for me.

Below, I try to give you the best answer I can on this very important piece of your Customer Success strategy.

For context, on Friday, May 5, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video (audio only… sorry) is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Why Aligning Sales and Customer Success is Critical

The goal of Customer Success for your company is to get customers to stay longer, buy more, and advocate for you.

So it’s critical to remember that Customer Success begins at the first interaction with prospects by your sales team, continues across their entire lifecycle, and is required for scalable, repeatable Account Expansion.

Which means it’s absolutely critical for Sales and Customer Success Management to be aligned.

Let’s dig into this…

For context, on Friday, May 5, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video (audio only… sorry) is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Customer Success and Charging Setup Fees

So, do Setup Fees jibe with Customer Success?

Are they mutually exclusive? Can they play well together?

Is there a time or place where they’re more appropriate?

The answer is, of course, yes. And no.

Don’t worry… I unconfuse it all below.

For context, on Friday, May 5, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video (audio only… sorry) is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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The Biggest Customer Success Mistake (and How to Avoid it)

Spoiler Alert: The biggest mistake you can make in Customer Success is not putting the customer first – this is CUSTOMER Success.

If what you’re doing isn’t designed around the customer’s Desired Outcome, I have no idea what you’re doing.

You’re doing something, but it’s not Customer Success.

But let’s talk about why this matters…

For context, on Friday, May 5, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video (audio only… sorry) is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Determining the Ideal Customer Success Organization Structure

A persistent question in Customer Success Management is what the ideal organizational structure is.

A great example of this is this question I received: In a large enterprise platform with a high-revenue customer base, do you see any pros or cons to having the Customer Success Management team and the pre-sales team working under the same leadership?

Such a simple question… with a not-so-simple answer.

Let’s dig in…

For context, on Friday, May 5, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video (audio only… sorry) is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Customer Success in Two-sided Markets

Customer Success Management is about ensuring customers achieve their ever-evolving Desired Outcome.

Regardless of the model – two-sided market, partner model, direct-to-customer, etc. – every entity in the value chain has a Desired Outcome.

It’s up to you to discover what that is and facilitate the achievement of that (ever-evolving) Desired Outcome, and it all starts with getting clear on Success Potential for each link in the value chain.

Let’s explore this idea further…

For context, on Friday, May 5, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video (audio only… sorry) is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Customer Success: The Secret to Improving Customer Adoption

Customer Success Management is about ensuring customers achieve their ever-evolving Desired Outcome.

It’s not about adoption.

It’s not about the breadth and depth of use of your product.

These are big ideas you need to move past if you want to be successful in your Customer Success initiative.

Let’s explore this idea…

For context, on Friday, May 5, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video (audio only… sorry) is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Customer Success in a B2B2C (Partner / Value Chain) Scenario

Customer Success is defined as our customers achieving their Desired Outcome through their interactions with our company.

Think of that definition of Customer Success as your Operating Philosophy.

That philosophy can be extended to the greater value chain or ecosystem you work within.

Every entity in the partner/distribution value chain has a Desired Outcome.

It’s up to you to discover what that is and facilitate the achievement of that (ever-evolving) Desired Outcome, and it all starts with getting clear on Success Potential for each link in the value chain.

Let’s dig into this…

For context, on Friday, May 5, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video (audio only… sorry) is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

[Read more…]

Customer Success: How to Monitor Customer Happiness

Customer Success is not about making customers happy. In fact, there are 8 other things Customer Success is not if you’re so inclined.

But for the sake of this post, just know that we’re here to make customers successful, not happy.

But how do you monitor that?

Good question… let’s explore that a bit.

For context, on Friday, May 5, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video (audio only… sorry) is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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Determining the Perfect Number of Customer Segments

In Customer Success, customer segmentation should be logical (take a step back and really think about it) and done from the customer point of view (think: Appropriate Experience segmentation) rather than from an internal-focused view (i.e. ARR, revenue potential, etc.).

It’s not about what a customer pays us… it’s about the customer’s appropriate experience.

Let’s dig into this…

For context, on Friday, May 5, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video (audio only… sorry) is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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The Difference between Customer Success and Account Management

Customer Success is not Account Management.

In fact, there are 9 things Customer Success is not, and Account Management is one of those things.

Traditional Account Management is old, outdated, and will hurt your relationship with your customers while failing to help them achieve their Dequired Outcome.

But I’m getting ahead of myself… let’s dig into the difference and why knowing the difference is incredibly important.

For context, on Friday, May 5, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video (audio only… sorry) is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

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The Secret to Defining Customer Success Coverage Models

Customer Success is not Account Management.

This means using traditional Account Management ideas will either limit your (and your customer’s) success… or will cause you your Customer Success initiative to fail miserably.

The traditional method of simply looking at what a customer pays us and giving them a particular level of ‘touch’ is old and outdated.

It’s time to logically segment customers based on Appropriate Experience (AX).

Let’s dig in…

For context, on Friday, May 5, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video (audio only… sorry) is embedded below and below that is the transcript (edited for better readability) that answers the question.

[Read more…]

Lincoln Murphy Customer Success AMA Transcript and Video – May 5, 2017

On Friday May 5, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video is embedded below and while there seems to be an audio/video sync issue, the audio is crisp and listening to this will be time well-spent.

If you don’t want to watch or listen, I got the entire AMA transcribed (and cleaned it up a bit for readability, added links, etc.) and posted that below. I answered 20 questions in excruciating detail.

I’m planning on doing another Customer Success AMA on May 19, 2017, on Facebook.

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