What does a good customer success strategy actually look like? It depends on who you ask. 

At marketing technology company Movable Ink, the customer success strategy involves regular one-on-one meetings with clients, internal cross-functional meetings and staying up to date on clients’ latest news. 

As part of its customer success strategy, representatives at DigitalOcean take diligent notes on key opportunities in order to identify and enable the best business outcomes. 

And at AB Tasty, onboarding, surveys and Q&A sessions with clients ensure needs are being met. 

Although customer success strategies differ from company to company, the end goal is always the same: to create meaningful relationships that boost customer engagement with the business. We talked with 12 tech leaders to dig deeper into their respective customer success strategies and what it takes to exceed customer expectations. 

How To Exceed Customer Expectations

  • Be accessible to your customers
  • Do your research on customer needs
  • Be proactive, transparent, and honest
  • Always follow through on commitments

 

Everspring

Maegan Murphy

VICE PRESIDENT, CLIENT ENGAGEMENT

Maegan Murphy

How has your team developed specific benchmarks for customer success or satisfaction?

This year has been unprecedented in its lack of customer-facing availability. Setting customer expectations in the absence of face-to-face meetings means establishing trust and respect with your client. 

At Everspring, at least two times a year, we debrief our clients on actions and results within the last reporting period. We provide these findings, whether they’re good or bad, as a discussion point to help plan for the upcoming period. This transparency into the biannual operations allows clients to give feedback and commentary on upcoming initiatives. The open forum helps to guide annual plans and provides a point of follow-up.

 

With the inability to visit in person, it is so important to understand what clients are experiencing.’’

 

What's one thing you do regularly to go above and beyond for your clients?

Being accessible. My clients always know that I am available via email or phone to answer questions, help them flex or adjust current strategy. I speak to my clients every week to ensure that we are on track or can pivot quickly to added deliverables. With the ever-changing climate, they and we need to be adaptable and fluid regarding their needs. Beyond the regularly scheduled calls and meetings, a quick personal note or email creates an ongoing relationship that leads to a deeper understanding of current pain points and pressures that aren’t always uncovered in strategic meetings. With the inability to visit in person, it is so important to understand what clients are experiencing.

 

What's one piece of advice you have for people in customer-facing roles who are looking to really dazzle their clients?

I think this goes without saying, but the personal connection that you have with your clients is what will help you dazzle them. A graduation, birth of a child, death of a family member — knowing what is happening in your clients’ lives is of the utmost importance to maintaining stellar relationships. Of course, a well-run operation and strong results are what pay the bills. That should never be forgotten, but the personal relationship is key. 

And don’t ever forget your internal clients! The internal teams that create all of the deliverable products often get forgotten in client-facing roles. Without their hard work and dedication, you’ll miss some key deliverables. Your internal teams are often the unsung heroes of client-facing interactions. Sing their praises from the highest rafters every chance you can get.

 

Movable Ink

Julio Lopez

DIRECTOR OF CLIENT STRATEGY

Julio Lopez

Movable Ink is a marketing technology company that creates visual experiences for clients to share across email and other channels. As part of its customer success strategy, Movable Ink holds regular one-on-one meetings with clients and internal cross-functional meetings to ensure everyone is up to date on the latest news, Director of Client Strategy Julio Lopez said.  

 

How has your team developed specific benchmarks for customer success or satisfaction? 

In addition to traditional Net Promoter Score (NPS) surveys, which are important but also very impersonal, we regularly temperature check the customer’s satisfaction across all levels of the relationship. Our executive team will have regular one-on-ones with clients’ leadership teams to openly discuss opportunities for improvement and highlight successes. We also hold director-level sessions with clients where we get more tactical about what needs to be done to continuously push the envelope of innovation.

To ensure internal alignment across all teams, we also hold regularly scheduled cross-functional meetings to discuss where else we can provide value for the client and create roadmaps to meet those goals. This all-in approach means that the client is always at the center of our discussions and has led to high satisfaction rates across our customer base.

 

What’s one thing you do regularly to go above and beyond for your clients? 

To sum it up in one word, research. Oftentimes customer experience (CX) teams get bogged down by the day-to-day work and are really dependent on the client to provide information around their business priorities. By attending all investor relations presentations where organizational objectives are shared, creating Google alerts for key executives’ names (such as CEO and CMO), and watching executive interviews, we can stay on top of what’s really important at the senior leadership level. 

This allows us to better service the day-to-day teams since we’re hyper-aware of what their leadership is focusing on. In a similar vein, industry research is very important. By staying on top of what is happening in the industry overall, we are able to tie back all recommendations to the broader macro-climate, which our clients really appreciate.
 

Our all-in approach means that the client is always at the center of our discussions.”


What’s one piece of advice you have for people in customer-facing roles who are looking to really dazzle their clients?

Use project trackers and stick to them. With so many competing priorities, it’s easy for certain initiatives to fall by the wayside. As CX leaders, we keep our clients satisfied by getting results. If projects aren’t completed and there is no documentation of what occurred, you may find yourself in an uncomfortable situation. On a positive note, project trackers keep every stakeholder accountable and that will mean more successfully launched initiatives keeping clients happy and engaged.

 

DigitalOcean

Robert Sheber

BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

As part of its customer success strategy, DigitalOcean Business Development Manager Robert Sheber said that his team is required to take diligent notes and update key opportunity details in its customer relationship management (CRM) in order to identify and enable the best business outcomes.

 

How has your team developed specific benchmarks for customer success or satisfaction? 

When working with new customers, helping them have a successful deployment to our platform is essential. Our team is very familiar with the steps customers need to take to ensure a successful deployment. One functional benchmark that we use to make sure customers don’t miss any of the critical steps in the process is to diligently notate and update key opportunity details in our CRM. This enables our customers to achieve their desired business outcomes and helps identify any remaining gaps that our team may need to address to accomplish the customer’s goals.

 

What’s one thing you do regularly to go above and beyond for your clients? 

Following through on our commitments, while a seemingly small gesture, drives massive business results. Timely follow-up and attention to detail in customer correspondence also builds confidence with our customers. It communicates to the customer that we are familiar with their specific situation and that we are invested in addressing their needs. “Do what you say you are going to do” is a common mantra on our team.
 

Following through on our commitments, while a seemingly small gesture, drives massive business results.”


What’s one piece of advice you have for people in customer-facing roles who are looking to really dazzle their clients?

Dive deeper into your probing questions. Deep knowledge into fewer customer decision points can be more valuable than bouncing across the surface with many scattered high-level questions. Successful reps are the reps that are able to drive towards the real crux of their customer’s needs.

 

SmartBear

Barbara Stickney

EVENT MANAGER

Barbara Stickney

You can’t exceed your customers’ expectations unless you know what they are. How has your team developed specific benchmarks for customer success or satisfaction, and what are they?

Our benchmark when it comes to events is, “How can I stand out in this conference of 100 or 1,000 other vendors who are all working to retain and attract customers?”

First, it’s a friendly face, someone who is fully present and ready to engage and listen. We ask people what they are looking for, show a demo of the product that can help and reward them with a memorable swag item. I’ve been told many times that SmartBear has the best swag. The best example was a fedora, a wearable one in menswear patterns and solids that looked great on all types of people. There was a sea of hats at each night’s reception!

It’s all about the relationship with your customers. You want to be their bread and butter, a vendor they can trust and will continue to support and grow with. SmartBear has a wide selection of software tools, and if a customer has one or two that are working well for them, then they are more likely to expand or try some additional ones.
 

It’s all about the relationship with your customers. You want to be their bread and butter, a vendor they can trust and will continue to support and grow with.”


What’s one thing you do regularly to go above and beyond for your clients? What impact has that had on your client relationships?

Since I’m the queen of swag, I love to send out appreciation gifts to accounts whenever a sales rep asks — making sure to include a personal note with each one. We also reward our speakers with personalized gifts that are small, useful and trendy to stay top of mind with them. One memorable gift from last year’s SmartBear Connect virtual event was a “Speaker for a Speaker,” a custom Bluetooth speaker. We received some nice social responses on Twitter for that. Cater to your customers: They want to feel they are your top priority.

 

What’s one piece of advice you have for people in customer-facing roles who are looking to really dazzle their clients?

Part of optimizing the customer experience is working together with both the technical and business teams to understand your customers’ desired outcomes. SmartBear has a popular behavior-driven development product, Cucumber, that simplifies BDD and continuous collaboration, helping teams ensure that their feature or app is designed and experienced the way it’s expected to.

Don’t assume that you alone understand the needs of your clients better than anyone. Collaborate regularly with other areas of the business who might have different perspectives, and you’ll likely be able to provide your unique perspectives to them. Don’t forget that you’re all in this together. Your customers will notice.

 

Interactions

Julie Dickman

ACCOUNT DIRECTOR

Julie Dickman

You can’t exceed your customers’ expectations unless you know what they are. How has your team developed specific benchmarks for customer success or satisfaction, and what are they?

Interactions is proud to have created a retention-focused customer relationship strategy. An easy way to measure success in this area is to look at the customer retention rate. We strive to achieve 100 percent retention by cultivating long-term relationships with our customers.

In order to truly know what your customers expect and how you are achieving their goals, you have to ask for feedback. We do this in many ways such as integrating surveys into product focused sessions, regularly asking for feedback on how we are doing and what we can do better.

In 2020, we rolled out a Net Promoter Score (NPS) program to continuously measure and monitor customer satisfaction. We know that customers who are willing to recommend Interactions are also likely to stick with us for the long haul. By identifying the promoters and the detractors, we can focus on improving our business with our customers. The NPS survey is easy for customers to answer and provides a common language to classify customers. Since this was the first rollout, we are using the results as baseline data to quantify overall satisfaction and establish future benchmarks.
 

In order to truly know what your customers expect and how you are achieving their goals, you have to ask for feedback.”


What’s one thing you do regularly to go above and beyond for your clients? What impact has that had on your client relationships?

We approach their business with the same care as if it were our own. We start by providing a world-class customer service model. Each client has a team that is focused on their success, which includes an account manager, project manager, designer, and a client service manager. Those teams are also part of an internal strategic autonomous team by client vertical, who work collectively to align, empower and measure success. The autonomous team structure offers our clients a team of individuals who are experts in their respective field, working collaboratively to achieve the customer’s goals.

The client success team structure has given our clients a team of professionals to consult with, ultimately building their trust in our team. We also conduct regular business review meetings with clients which include representation from our executive leadership team.

 

What’s one piece of advice you have for people in customer-facing roles who are looking to really dazzle their clients?

Be there. It’s really a simple point that is often overlooked. Your customers want to be heard and deserve prompt attention. Make sure you are staffed to be able to support their every need, even on the off-hours. Ask questions and regularly request feedback. For example, in the turn of the pandemic we asked all of our customers:

  • What are your biggest concerns?
  • What can I do to help you in the next 90 days?
  • How should I engage with you and your team?

We were quickly able to gather feedback and implement quick turnaround on key projects to enable their success during some turbulent times. Work to serve what matters most to your clients and in the effort of doing so, you will dazzle them.

 

ab tasty customer success
AB TASTY

AB Tasty

Ashley Thorpe

CUSTOMER SUCCESS MANAGER

From a paid landing page to mobile checkout, AB Tasty’s platform aims to optimize the customer experience. Customer Success Manager Ashley Thorpe relies on several strategies — from NPS surveys to simply asking questions and receiving feedback — to ensure customers are satisfied. 

 

How has your team developed specific benchmarks for customer success or satisfaction? 

We use NPS surveys as one way to gauge customer satisfaction and customer loyalty. Scores are published to a Slack channel that the entire company has access to. Depending on the survey response, there are specific processes and next steps.

We also have a post-onboarding survey. Successful onboarding leads to faster time-to-value for our clients, and this feedback allows us to address any concerns early on and continuously improve onboarding to make it the most efficient and effective for new customers.

Product usage is also tracked. To be a satisfied client, it’s essential to use the platform. Identifying users or accounts who are not utilizing the platform allows customer success managers (CSMs) to proactively reach out and/or provide relevant resources.

And arguably the most important way to exceed expectations is to ask questions and listen. Onboarding begins with a kick-off call where we talk to the client about their business, goals and expectations and form what we call a “mutual success plan.” Then, goals are broken down into smaller pieces (strategies, tactics and metrics) that help us tailor the training sessions and advise on which features and actions will enable them to achieve their goals

 

What’s one thing you do regularly to go above and beyond for your clients? What impact has that had on your client relationships?

Providing personalized test hypothesis is one way the team goes above and beyond to help our clients maximize their ROI.

I regularly advise clients on test and personalization ideas that are unique to their specific goals. This includes researching the company, competitors, performing heuristic evaluations, UX audits and analyzing session recordings to form the “best” test hypotheses for the customer.

A strong hypothesis is key to a successful CRO program. Irrelevant, incomplete or poorly formulated hypotheses are a root cause of many neutral or negative tests. Data-driven test hypotheses result in more positive (revenue-generating) tests and actionable insights.
 

Arguably the most important way to exceed expectations is to ask questions and listen.”


What’s one piece of advice you have for people in customer-facing roles who are looking to really dazzle their clients?

As a customer success manager, it’s our job to help the customer achieve their goals. One piece of advice I would share, especially for new customer success managers or those transitioning from a support role, is to be proactive. It can be easy to spend time being reactive in responding to immediate needs, questions or issues. Customers may appreciate this in the short term but to help them be successful (and really dazzle them), remember to carve out time for activities that allow you to be proactive with customers.

Start by talking and, more importantly, listening to your customers. Understand their goals, needs and challenges so you can offer relevant strategic advice and identify potential challenges even before they arise.

It can be helpful to block time in your calendar for key projects or activities like reviewing customer health scores, checking product adoption stats and reaching out to customers each month to help be a more proactive CSM. The most successful CSMs have the most successful customers, which makes this time non-negotiable.

 

QuestionPro

John Johnson

SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, CUSTOMER SUCCESS AND OPERATIONS

John Johnson

What awaits QuestionPro's new enterprise clients? One-on-one sessions with CEO and Founder Vivek Bhaskaran. Senior Vice President of Customer Success and Operations John Johnson said that personalized touches like these meetings are just one of the ways that the organization caters to clients.

 

How has your team developed specific benchmarks for customer success or satisfaction? What are they?

As a survey company with a platform that helps our clients measure and improve the customer experience, we eat our own dog food. We engage with our customers and constantly ask them to rate our performance. In fact, many of our team members have a link to a “rate me” survey in the signature block of their emails. If the numbers are not good, we immediately connect with the customer to find out how to do better.

We engage with our customers and constantly ask them to rate our performance.”

 

Whats one thing you do regularly to go above and beyond for your clients?

One thing we do for our enterprise customers is a one-on-one meeting with our CEO, Vivek Bhaskaran, as part of the onboarding process. It’s a great chance for him to learn about customer needs and to direct internal resources accordingly. It is a high-touch approach to making new customers feel valued.

 

Whats one piece of advice you have for people in customer-facing roles who are looking to really dazzle their clients?

Remember that your customers are real people. You have to always be creating opportunities for the relationship to grow, through simple things like sending a birthday note, congratulating them on an article published or high-fiving their work anniversary on social media. The small things count.

But, even more than that, we understand that by aligning our success with our customer’s business objectives, we become invaluable to them. In addition, if we can help a customer succeed in their own career, it’s a bond that is difficult to break.

 

ePayPolicy

Trevor Bye

ACCOUNT MANAGER

Trevor Bye

“Our goal is to keep payments as simple as possible so our clients can get out of the collection business and focus on their own clients,” ePayPolicy Account Manager Trevor Bye said of the growing e-payments organization. In interacting with customers, Bye emphasized open communications as crucial to relationships.

 

How has your team developed specific benchmarks for customer success or satisfaction? What are they?

As we launched our customer success program, we wanted to make sure that everything that sales and marketing promised was being delivered and was going above and beyond those expectations.
 
Using survey data, internal analysis and general client feedback, our team has been able to set high but achievable goals that all of our team members can agree on. From their experience with interacting with our team to the usability of the product, we track our progress and record activities in our CRM to manage a large amount of data.
 

Whats one thing you do regularly to go above and beyond for your clients?

We offer three types of payment pages: basic, custom and an integrated version. These integrated pages connect to our client’s agency management systems — programs that do everything from invoicing to claim management and accounting —  and they love them. However, ePayPolicy isn’t integrated with every management system yet. 

This is where the fun part starts. Whether it’s getting on a conference call with a customer support team or scouring help articles, we look for workarounds to help our clients speed up their receivables. Not only does this help our clients out, but it also expands our industry knowledge beyond the scope of what is required for ePayPolicy. This builds a higher level of trust and rapport with our clients.

Transparency and honesty are key.”

 

Whats one piece of advice you have for people in customer-facing roles who are looking to really dazzle their clients?

Transparency and honesty are key. There is merit in telling a client that you don’t know the answer to their question and that you’ll need to circle back with an answer. If anything, that shows that you are human too, and want to make sure you get everything completely correct on the first go-around. This leads to long-term trust and confidence in managing their needs and concerns.

 

Criteria Corp

Quentin Wheeler

Senior Customer Success Manager

quentin wheeler

At Criteria Corp, the key is being proactive. Quentin Wheeler, a senior customer success manager at the employee aptitude, personality, and skills testing platform, said his team reviews client activity on their software and on the client’s website to get ahead of potential issues.

“If we see that they are doing a big hiring push, I like to reach out and see what else we can do to help,” Wheeler said. “We want to proactively be there for our customers when they could use us most, even if they don’t think to ask for help in their busy day-to-day lives.”

Wheeler shared how else he and his team foster solid client relationships to avoid contributing to another customer churn study. 


How has your team developed specific benchmarks for customer success or satisfaction?

Wheeler: One of the most important benchmarks that we use for customer satisfaction is a monthly Net Promoter Score survey. We take our NPS very seriously, and if we see any less-than-stellar responses coming in, we always follow up with the customer to see how we can improve. Whether it be something little or bigger relating to our software, we take the time to see if there’s anything we can do to help. The NPS is great because the overall score helps us track overall customer satisfaction, while the individual scores give us the opportunity to check in with our customers one-on-one.


    How do you go above and beyond for your clients, and what is the impact? 

    One thing myself and many of my team members like to do is to check up on our customers proactively by checking their account activity in our software as well as our customers’ websites for activity. For example, if we see that they are doing a big hiring push, I like to reach out and see what else we can do to help. Do we need to adjust their current Criteria Corp plan? Are they using the right tools? We want to proactively be there for our customers when they could use us most, even if they don’t think to ask for help in their busy day-to-day lives. Little steps like that help our clients know that we really are a resource and are happy to help.

     

    What’s one piece of advice you have for people in customer-facing roles who are looking to really dazzle their clients?

    Listen and take good notes. This helps you really get to know your client and build a relationship. For example, if clients mention that they are Dallas Cowboys fans, follow up on the game and make a note to bring it up. Little details the client may have shared show that you are a real person who is trying to establish a healthy relationship. Also, do not pre-diagnose a client’s problem. Nothing is more annoying than going to the doctor and getting prescribed a pill before they even listen to your story. Every client is different, and you need to be able to hear what their situation is before providing a solution.

     

    BombBomb

    Cori Medler

    MANAGER OF CUSTOMER SUCCESS

    Cori Medler

    To Cori Medler, manager of customer success at BombBomb, the key to going above and beyond for clients is to focus on human-centered communication. For Medler and her team, this means listening to customer pain points and finding solutions for them while also offering honest advice and pushing back on bad ideas when needed.

     

    You can’t exceed your customers’ expectations unless you know what they are. How has your team developed specific benchmarks for customer success or satisfaction? 

    In addition to standard CS metrics and benchmarks, like customer satisfaction score (CSAT), Net Promoter Score (NPS) and usage, we use impact reviews — our version of quarterly business reviews (QBRs) — as a touchpoint to reconnect with our customers. Usage benchmarks can be a vanity metric, because even though the product is being used, that doesn’t mean goals are being met. Both our managed and at-scale CS teams address our customers’ initial goals, progress to-date and their future goals, along with how to achieve them. The extra flavor for us, though, is looping sales back into the conversation here to focus on the entire customer experience. 

    This happens over virtual meetings for our managed CS team, while our at-scale team uses our video messaging software to provide these asynchronous, human-centered impact reviews. Additionally, we have tracking to understand watch rates and create benchmarks for our CS impact. By connecting with and listening to our customers over real conversation, we have a deeper understanding of their success than if we relied solely on numeric metrics.

    By connecting with and listening to our customers over real conversation, we have a deeper understanding of their success than if we relied solely on numeric metrics.


    What’s one thing you do regularly to go above and beyond for your clients, and what impact has that had on your client relationships?

    We focus on human-centered communication. In everything we do, we treat our customer not as a number but as a living, breathing human being. Part of this personalized approach is listening to their needs and then finding out how we can meet them. This requires a strong internal culture and collaboration between teams, including customer success, sales and product. You can’t have strong customer satisfaction without a strong internal culture of collaboration. 

    But being human-centered doesn’t mean we say “yes” to every request. We listen to our clients and hear their needs, but we also don’t hesitate to push back on bad ideas or when our software is being used in a way that isn’t human-centered. Treating our customers as humans, listening to them and leaning into our expertise enables us to become their trusted ally and build a real relationship with them.

     

    What’s one piece of advice you have for people in customer-facing roles who are looking to really dazzle their clients?

    What dazzles our customers is that we go the extra mile to build relationships with them across all of our customer success functions. Customer success is a long game and is all about building relationships and trust. One big way we do this is by sending personalized video messages to our customers using BombBomb’s software. We send video messages to check in, celebrate success and to offer support with pain points.

    Because our customers can see our face and hear our tone of voice, we build rapport much faster. One customer recently gave us this feedback: “It takes a few seconds and very little effort to understand what the comm is about and who I’m working with. I immediately felt like I knew them so much better than any other customer success manager I’ve worked with in the past.”

    Simply put, our customers get comfortable with us. They tell us about their lives, and our relationship is no longer just about work. Taking the extra step of adding video to your messages won’t just dazzle your customers: It will build trust, confidence and a relationship.

     

    Evolve Vacation Rental

    Mara Castro

    SVP, CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE

    Mara Castro

    When it comes to dazzling customers, SVP of Customer Experience Mara Castro has some easy-to-apply advice: consider the bigger picture. To Evolve Vacation Rental, understanding the way people perceive a brand is crucial to both meeting and exceeding their expectations.

     

    You can’t exceed your customers’ expectations unless you know what they are. How has your team developed specific benchmarks for customer success or satisfaction? 

    Our customer experience benchmarks are built into the fabric of Evolve. We’ve aligned our vision and mission to our customers’ needs — to work with a trustworthy brand that makes vacation rental easy. With the anchors of trust and ease in mind, we’ve built a hospitality framework to guide both short-term and long-term goals within the business.

    As part of this framework, we continue to actively listen, digest and provide insights across the organization as to how those expectations are shifting over time. These insights come from a range of sources — from reviews, NPS, operational data and more — but they all tell a story about what is on our customers’ minds. The ability to communicate this information across Evolve has been critical to keeping us aligned as a business as we continue to grow.

    Part of exceeding expectations is taking a holistic approach to understanding what else is playing into your customers’ perception of your brand.


    What’s one thing you do regularly to go above and beyond for your clients, and what impact has that had on your client relationships?

    We lead with hospitality, which to us means truly caring for our customers. It might seem simple, but the larger a business grows, the easier it can be to get stuck in your ways and further removed from your customers’ needs.

    A great example of our hospitality happened during the pandemic. Like most travel companies, we had a strict cancellation policy, but this changed the instant the pandemic hit because we understood that the ability to travel could change in an instant. Our guests’ health and safety took precedence above all else, which required more flexibility on our part. We now welcome guests to change their plans if needed, even at the last minute. This has helped foster trust with our customers as they have total peace of mind to travel when they feel most comfortable.

     

    What’s one piece of advice you have for people in customer-facing roles who are looking to really dazzle their clients?

    Part of exceeding expectations is taking a holistic approach to understanding what else is playing into your customers’ perception of your brand. This can encompass a range of factors, including past experiences with your company, current world events or the way you’re marketing yourself externally.

    Do your homework to understand this perception. That, in combination with truly understanding your customers’ needs, wants and desires, will allow you to see what they expect from you and then — surpass it.

     

    Documoto, Inc.

    Selene Sanchez

    CUSTOMER SUCCESS MANAGER

    Selene Sanchez

    When properly implemented, customer success does much more than boost customer retention rates. At Documoto, CSMs like Selene Sanchez use insights gathered from customer touchpoints and implementation postmortems to refine internal processes.

     

    You can’t exceed your customers’ expectations unless you know what they are. How has your team developed specific benchmarks for customer success or satisfaction? 

    We hold regular postmortems on implementations and gather real-time feedback during customer interactions. This feedback is the starting point for many of the procedural and operational changes we make, like the retooling of our sales process to include customer success managers in demonstrations and goal-setting. This has given us the latitude to customize a prospect’s experience and better meet their expectations in the short and long-term.

    While knowing your product inside and out is paramount, helping your customers stay organized is a close second.


    What’s one thing you do regularly to go above and beyond for your clients, and what impact has that had on your client relationships?

    I help my customers get organized. While knowing your product inside and out is paramount, helping your customers stay organized is a close second. Think about how much easier life would be if you had a personal assistant who told you what deadlines were coming up and what you needed to prepare for a big presentation. This is why I provide detailed meeting summaries, create action items and help set timelines. It takes the administrative burden off my customer and lets them focus on their actual work while giving me an accurate picture of where they are in their lifecycle.

     

    What’s one piece of advice you have for people in customer-facing roles who are looking to really dazzle their clients?

    Laugh whenever you can. Some of my most treasured relationships have an element of fun and openness. It gives everyone a much-needed break from the deadlines, expectations and meetings. These moments help build bonds and forge a true partnership rather than a relationship built around a series of transactions. Your customers will appreciate you even more for being a breath of fresh air and you’ll be able to keep at least some of your sanity.

     

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