Gabriela Bojilova: 5 strategies to build relationships and keep customers

Mar 2, 2022

To succeed in Customer Success, there are five areas you need to cover. Let’s find out more. 

In a previous article, we talked about how customer success is a popular career path when you move up from SDR level. We also talked about how excellent Customer Success Managers go the extra mile for their customers. In this article, we’ll look at the fundamentals of customer success – the areas you always need to have covered if you are going to be effective in your role. 

Here are our five pillars of customer success. 

 

1 – Onboarding

Onboarding is usually the time when the salesperson who closed the deal hands control of the client over to you, the Customer Success Manager. Here, your job is to set the tone for this new stage of your relationship and get them started with the product. The overarching goal is to reassure your new customer that they made the right choice to sign up with you.

Introduce yourself as their new point of contact and be there for them when they need you. Use this time to manage their expectations of you. Remember, don’t promise anything you can’t deliver.

Don’t bombard your new customer with a load of technical information about the product on day one. Instead, try to start them off gently. Once you’ve done the nitty-gritty of giving them their usernames and passwords, introduce each feature gently, so they have time to appreciate the value they’re getting. 

 

2 – Customer Experience

Remember, in reality; your customer can probably get the same product features and benefits from one of your competitors. The reason why they have bought from you – and the reason why they will renew at the end of their contract – is because they like the experience of dealing with your company. 

So, continue to make it easy for them. Be there whenever they need you. Help them if they have any issues, but check in regularly so you can be proactive. Be honest and upfront if there are any problems ahead. 

When you go the extra mile for your customers in this way, you build trust and solidify your relationship. The goodwill builds up, which can come in handy if something goes wrong – and at renewal time.

 

3 – Demonstrating value

Your customer bought your product because they were facing a challenge that your sales team promised it would solve. Once you’re in charge of the account, it is down to you to help them realise the value of their purchase.

Speak regularly to your customer to find out how they use the product. Help them if they need it. However, the best Customer Success Managers know that the customer doesn’t always tell them everything. Monitor their product usage through your own data, if you can. If you notice that they’re not using it much, or not using certain features, find out why and remedy the situation.  

Show your customer how to get a return on their investment.

 

4 – Advocacy

Your job as a Customer Success Manager is to be the voice of the customer inside your organisation, even if it sometimes goes against what your colleagues want to do. The best CSMs ensure that the customer’s voice is heard during product design, marketing and just about everywhere else in the company.

Of course, this approach brings value to your organisation as well as your customers. After all, if you become a company that delights its customers at every stage, you’ll win more customers and make larger profits!

 

5 – Retention (and growth)

The overarching goal of Customer Success in your organisation is to ensure that customers stay with you at the end of their subscription. Everything you do in onboarding and relationship building is to retain that customer. Be proactive about their renewal and if you anticipate any problems, flag them up early and attempt to solve their problems.

However, you don’t just want to retain your customer. Ideally, you want them to buy more from you next time. Show them what else is available and how it could impact their business. Liaise with the sales team on how best to approach upselling with each customer.

Finally, let’s talk about a way you can bring your pillars together and truly involve your customer in your processes.

 

What is a Customer Advisory Board?

The best way to know what your customer is thinking is to get detailed feedback as often as possible. Many B2B companies set up Customer Advisory Boards (CAB) to systematise customer feedback. CABs bring together top-level executives, technical experts, Customer Success Managers and customer end-users to discuss and collaborate on creating a better product with a smoother customer experience.

If your CAB is effective (not a way to sell more products or a focus group), it should help to solidify your relationship with your best customers. Plus, you should get a better product as a result, which will give you an edge over your competitors.

 

Find out more from SaaSLeads

At SaaSLeads.io, we recruit, develop and deliver SDRs to your organisation, ready to produce excellent results in your sales team. Our SDRs have an excellent grounding in the basics, ready to branch out into more advanced techniques.

Our extensive training programme teaches SDRs to generate excitement around the impact your product brings. First, they learn how to move your prospects through a structured sales process that leads to more won deals. Then, when they get to your company, they’re ready to produce unparalleled results. 

To find out more, contact us by filling out the form below.

Gabriela Bojilova

Gabriela Bojilova is a an English Literature graduate from UCL, with an MA in Comparative Education.

As with most people who work in sales, Gabriela “fell into” the industry. She had little to no knowledge of sales which changed quickly when she started working in recruitment, moving on to become an SDR at a fast-growth cybersecurity startup, and she is now a Customer Success Manager at SaaSLeads.

Gabriela values her experience as an SDR very highly and is grateful for all the skills that the role enabled her to develop. This is why she’s very happy to be working at a company that promotes the SDR role as the best entry-level role into the world of tech sales.

You can follow Gabriela and connect with her on LinkedIn.

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