As technology evolves and companies are able to offer ever-increasing levels of customization and attention to consumers, the need for clarity in setting goals for your customer success and support teams is crucial if you want to offer profound and meaningful customer experiences.
What goals should a manager be setting for their team? What metrics should we be prioritizing in customer success?
We asked some of the brightest leaders in the industry about what they personally find to be most important in goal setting.
Here's what they had to say:
Brian Hansen | Director of Customer Success at Zywave
"We measure a range of KPI, but most important is meaningful connections with customers. The most effective way to understand people and have the opportunity to share insight that they value is to be real, honest, and even vulnerable when appropriate. Those type of higher-level interactions come from people speaking with people. That's why we measure how often our CS team is creating connections."
Maranda Dziekonski | Chief Customer Officer at Swiftly
"My team's most important goal we measure is net retention. Net retention tells me most of what I need to know about the overall health of our customer portfolio. Strong NRR usually indicates low churn, sticky products, great expansion practices, and potentially high customer sentiment. It's almost a one-stop-shop for a quick snapshot into your overall business health."
Tyler Richards | Head of Implementation Services at Lucid
"Being able to deliver on a customer’s unique business objectives, and the job they hired our product/service to do for them, is the singular most important goal for our team. Although it can sometimes be challenging to measure and operationalize at scale, it is worth the effort. It is the only metric that truly matters."
Pam Micznik | Founder at Zenya Learning
"Customer Education scales Customer Success, to show this, we measure:
· Number of times content is accessed: (Page views, courses consumed, videos watched). If users consume content (Instructor-Led or self-paced), it is time that the CS and Support teams can devote time to more strategic efforts.
· Content Satisfaction Scores: Does the content meet the needs of the user? How can the content be improved?
· Time to value: How quickly do customers / accounts that consume content and/or take classes to reach their first time to value. How does that compare to those who don't?
· Renewal Rates: # Accounts that renew that have consumed courses versus those who don’t."
Aditya Maheshwari | Head of Customer Success at AppsFlyer
"I think any customer success manager will attest to it - customer success is not something that is the work of a single person or only one team. But the customer success team is the lynchpin that ties everything together - from the C-level to the last intern and enables the customers to thrive and grow in a B2B world. With this in mind, we made sure that the cornerstones of our goals are relationships and results. These two things are inherently bound together.
When I say relationships, I mean relationships with both internal and external stakeholders. Whether it is the internal sales and marketing teams or cross-functional customer teams - building strong, strategic, and diverse relationships makes sure that every single interaction carried out is with one singular vision in mind. And that is to positively impact our customers’ success and maintain the highest level of customer satisfaction.
The success of these relationships can only be gauged by the positive results that they drive. Results may be new customer acquisition or the development of new success stories and campaigns for internal stakeholders; the same way for our customers’ results might mean understanding our customers’ business objectives and enabling them to achieve these objectives.
These are the outcomes that drive customer success at our organization. For both relationships and results, or as we like to call them, desired outcomes, we have created an infrastructure to measure them in our CRM."
Anita Toth | The Churn Crusher System
"This is such a challenging question because, at any one time, there are competing goals. There are goals related to the team, to the company, and to the customer. Each of those goals will have their own metrics to be measured. And each CS team and company will have different ways of deciding which of these goals take priority. My best answer to this very complex question is to choose a high priority goal that--right now--isn't being measured and start measuring it."
Nadav Shem-Tov | Senior Director, Teammate Success- Customer Success at Gainsight
"I’d say - Verified Outcomes. Because I believe it’s the best leading indicator for customer success - and if you get it right, all the other metrics (GRR,NRR) will flow in more easily."