August 3, 2023

3 Tips to Start Your Journey with Strategic Customer Success

This year, customer retention and growth will matter more than ever. At CXology, we are passionate about helping leaders and teams do their best with what they have and increase their persuasiveness to secure investments in retention. Take a look at our interactive calculator, which presents four persuasive arguments for retention.

Here are a few key points to remember:

  1. Companies that neglect churn will always fall short of their revenue targets.
  2. Companies that neglect churn will always have lower profit margins. 
  3. Companies that neglect churn will miss the compounding benefits of Net Revenue Retention (NRR).
  4. Retention is a HUGE contributor to company valuation at exit.

Building strong retention relies on trust, relevance, and enabling your customers to see the possibilities. CXology offers the following tips to help you get started.

1. Asking open-ended questions. 

Asking open-ended questions at the beginning of a customer engagement lays the foundation for trust between you and your customer. These open-ended questions have been a valuable part of our recommended flow since 2015 after finding them online (I would love to cite the creator but have lost that in the past eight years).

Achieving these objectives will enable you to establish as much trust between you and your customer in one meeting.  So what are those questions that can lead to an impactful beginning?

  1. What is the one thing we must get right to make this worth undertaking?
  2. How does your organization define success?
  3. What is our role in achieving that success?
  4. What aspects of the internal culture or external environment could put this effort at risk to fail?
  5. Assuming we mitigate that risk, what would exceed your wildest dreams?

These questions have always uncovered things that I didn’t expect to learn and helped me deliver a better experience not just in onboarding but throughout a multiyear relationship. 

Are these questions the secret sauce? Nah. But they fit perfectly into a strategic, post-sale customer journey. You can find many other suggestions with a simple Google search.

2. Consistently deliver First Value. 

Delivering a moment of first value ensures your customer experiences value and that we have accomplished something together. For CXologists, the time to First Value marks the completion of a cycle. We have aligned, identified a goal, designed/implemented it, and equipped our customer, resulting in a moment of value. The moment of value could be a new capability, insight, compliance, etc. 

There will and should be many points of value in pursuit of the outcome that spurred the purchase. Each cycle, we come out more aligned and have deeper trust. 

Value cannot be a check in the box.

First, Value doesn’t have to be complicated. Asking open-ended questions will create a deeper understanding of what your customer wants to accomplish. In identifying 

3. Fill in the Messy Middle with Sharing Insights. 

Sharing Insights is the rudder on a ship. Getting your customer to do or appreciate the obvious can be frustrating when you feel you’re talking and the mic is off. It’s not uncommon for teams to have done all the right things to feel like they go unheard with key advice. However, from a customer perspective, we also don’t make it easy to tune into our message. It’s easy for us to fall into the trap of speaking our internal language to our customers and miss creating a connection to the message.

However, simple, easy-to-write emails can become prolific in your customer’s company. 

A quality insight can:

  1. Expand your reach beyond your current contact
  2. Cement shared achievements and key points of value
  3. Inform and teach better practices
  4. Set the stage for follow on business and/or revenue growth

We have a simple approach to sharing insights so your message doesn’t go unheard.

While these tips are essential, they are just the tip of the iceberg! Join CXology and our growing community to explore all the tips, tactics, and strategies that we have to offer.