Part 2: How Customer Support Drives Recurring Revenue
“To retain the customers you have, you must help them achieve the outcomes they need.”
This concept, as detailed in the new whitepaper by ServiceXRG, illustrates how well-defined service programs and effective adoption of your product can be the keys to maximizing recurring revenue performance.
In Part 1 of this blog series we talked about the challenge to gather and use the data from every customer interaction to move your team out of reactive mode and into far more effective proactive stances.
How do you do this? We explored one way in Part 1. Here are three more ways. (Spoiler alert! They include the participation of the sales, technology, and customer success teams in your organization.)2. Sales: Create awareness of and demand for your post-sale services during the pre-sales process.
ServiceXRG advises us that “it is no longer sufficient to sell only product features and assume customers can be successful [after the sale]. Well-defined services programs provide the essential complement to products, accelerating customer success and helping to mitigate churn.”1
Because they function as two separate departments, many businesses make the mistake of viewing sales and support as independent operations. They see the customer journey as a straight line where the customer comes into contact with the business, purchases a product or service, and seeks help from support should any issues arise.
This linear viewpoint not only misses an opportunity to set up the post-sale support as a benefit—ensuring success with the product—it compromises the value of existing customers and the assurance they will renew, add seats, and potentially add additional features. Begin during the sales process to emphasize selling positive outcomes.
3. Product: Product developers are people, too.
With SaaS solutions becoming a common business model, many companies are adding “technology manager” roles to form a relationships with the customer success teams. As businesses rely more on technology in the future—including new software, servers, and much more—product development and technology managers can help connect the dots between the customers' technical support needs and developing and enhancing products that have the business goals of their current and future customers in mind.
Using a B2B customer support software solution like TeamSupport, support teams are able to track an issue from the initial call, through development's repair, QA testing, and final deployment back to the customer. It serves as a great workflow tool. Not only that, when you track trends in issues, product teams can address the core root of issues, make permanent fixes and enhance the product with greater functionality and stability.
4.Customer Success: Turn your customers into champions!
The customer success manager plays a critical role in acting as a true partner by providing suggestions for best practices and tools that enable support teams to use your product to its full benefit. CSMs also know which services customers are looking for and can use this information to supply ideas to your developers for products that fulfill a customer's unmet needs.
CSMs should lead customers through critical lifecycle phases, plan stages and activities around desired business outcomes, and lead them to achieving goals. A centralized interface for reporting and communication will allow your CSMs to stay on top of their entire portfolio.
By taking this holistic approach to managing the customer relationships, your CSMs and customer support team will be key asset asset in selling additional licenses, features, and services to existing customers.
In conclusion, businesses shouldn't think of sales, product, and support/success as separate. Instead, focus on how they can work in harmony to better assist the needs of your customers. Should customers encounter any problems with their new services, they already know and trust all three teams to be reliable, helpful, and ultimately leading to successful outcomes for both businesses.
To assist you on your journey starting with what to consider when determining the need for a new B2B customer support software solution, to knowing how to choose the right provider, to ensuring success from onboarding and beyond, download this complete guide.