What Is The Role Of A Customer Success Manager?

There has been a lot of talk about the sales journey and how important it is to have support from other members in order to keep customers happy. However, one role that we dont hear as much about is customer success management.

First, lets define the terms.

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Go through a variety of filters to zero in on the leads you want to reach. This is crazy specific, but you could find all the people that match the following:Ā 

  • A company in the Financial Services or Banking industry
  • Who have more than 10 employees
  • That spend money on Adwords
  • Who use Hubspot
  • Who currently have job openings for marketing help
  • With the role of HR Manager
  • That has only been in this role for less than 1 year
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How Is Customer Success Defined?

Customer success is the goal of any company who wants to retain customers, reduce churn and increase customer loyalty. The process involves creating a better experience for your customer by making sure they understand what you are offering.

What Is the Function of a Customer Success Manager?

Customer success management ensures that your customers have a great experience with you. They will know, understand and feel the value of what they are getting from you.

Here’s the customer success manager job description. The customer success manager‘s role is to bridge the gap between a company and its customers. They help with product development, marketing strategies, answering questions from customers or even fixing bugs.

I initially thought that just paying them a good base salary and giving commissions would be enough to motivate my salespeople. However, it turns out people are motivated by more than just money.

Once a sale is completed, the customer success manager takes over to make sure that clients understand their product and have everything they need in order to start using it. The CSM bridges the gap between sales and support by making sure that all needs are met.

Customer service representatives are not just there to sell or provide tech support. They’re also responsible for making sure that the customer is happy with their purchase before, during and after they buy it.

The customer success manager role of a Chief Revenue Officer is only 10 years old, but has an annual growth rate that’s 34%. This is because more and more companies are using subscription-based services such as SaaS or cloud.

These recurring-revenue models are designed to increase customer satisfaction, continued purchase and a low churn rate. The key is the Customer Success Manager.

As the head of customer success, you are the go-to person for any issues that may arise in your purchase, and they are instrumental to ensuring you have a good experience with their product. They usually take care of all aspects of pre-, post-, and ongoing sales.

customer success manager

The sales process is a long and complicated one, which starts with the prospecting phase and ends in customer service. During this journey, there are several steps that happen: first comes sales representatives who try to close the deal; then they hand off their customers over to an account manager or other team member if it doesn’t work out.

In this post, Ill show you what is a customer success manager role and how they fit into the prospect-customer sales journey. Customer Success Managers are invaluable because of their knowledge in various fields such as finance, marketing or programming.

Pre-sale Stage:The Customer Success Manager

What does a customer success manager do? The customer success managers role is to help the sales team demonstrate value and show that there are tangible benefits.

How to be a good customer success manager? A customer success manager is not just another support agent. It’s their job to help customers understand what they’re software can do and how it will benefit them.

The client success manager is a vital role in the sales process. They help close deals that have complex or difficult requirements by negotiating with prospects and providing an added service to customers.

A customer success manager also helps build a positive image of an organizations support during the pre-sales stage. What does a csm do? The CSM is largely responsible for what prospects think about our level of service and we’re often their first point of contact when they have questions or concerns.

In an ideal world, every opportunity would have a customer success manager assigned to it. But this is not always feasible.

The first thing an organization should do is decide on the criteria to determine when a customer success manager will be introduced. These should include company-specific and product-based standards, but some are universal.

  • One of my customers was looking for a product that had specific technical requirements.
  • A high-value prospect
  • I had a customer who started with one license and then later bought five more.

I thought that high base pay and lucrative commissions would be enough to motivate salespeople, but it turns out they are not.

Customer Success Managers ALWAYS Assist Onboarding

The customer success manager’s role is to work with customers after they’ve bought the product and help them integrate it into their lives.

The customer success manager understands the needs of a business from pre-sales, and can help that company extract more value after purchase.

How to be a customer success manager? Customer success managers dont just go over features and help implement solutions; they ask questions to make sure the customer is happy with their purchase.

For example, instead of just offering the customer a certain feature without understanding why they need it and how to best use that feature, the CSM first gets an idea of what their needs are. They then help them achieve this goal by presenting more options.

Customer success managers are often employed to make sure that customers get the most out of their solution, and this is something they do through a variety of means. For example, customer success managers might help with onboarding or installation issues in order to increase “stickiness” within an organization. This would eventually decrease churn rates for an organization – which many organizations use as a metric when measuring customer satisfaction.

Post Onboarding: The Customer Success Manager

Once the customer is on board, heshe will be introduced to our support team. If during onboarding the customer success manager has been nudging customers towards this department, then it should go smoothly.

Customer success managers should not stop contacting customers after they have handed over to support. Customers might think that the CSM has lost interest in them and is more focused on other things, which could lead to an abrupt handover.

One way to make sure that customer success managers are in touch with customers is by automating an email campaign. This allows them to stay on top of the latest best practices and upcoming events while also keeping up communication lines with existing clients.

What Are a Customer Success Manager’s Responsibilities?

I would often test out pay and commission structures on my salespeople because I thought that high base salary and lucrative commissions were enough motivation. It turns the only thing they care about is money.

The customer success manager role is different in every organization. It’s a delicate balance between priorities, with some arguing that the CSM should be responsible for selling their product and others claiming they are more concerned about ensuring customers have an excellent experience.

Others argue that the customer success manager should be more of a consultant and advocate for how to make future products better based on what customers want.

Here are some of the things that salespeople need to do in order to be successful.

1. Understand the customers needs to help them exploit your software

The customer success manager needs to be able to demonstrate the software and how it will help prospects in a way that is relevant for them. If they can’t, there’s a good chance of losing this lead.

The customer success manager should never push for a product demo if the prospect does not seem interested. It is much wiser to introduce them to one of your support team members who can walk through it with them in more detail.

2. Understanding customer value

The important thing to remember is that the value of a prospect changes over time. The more you know about your prospects, the better off you are when it comes to predicting their level of engagement with your company.

Investing in product training can help reduce churn because the customer will have a better understanding of how to use your products. This is especially important for big customers or those with potential.

3. Customization

When a customer needs help, the best thing to do is let them speak with an account manager. This will not only ensure that they get what they need but also helps in getting more sales and support work.

The company and the customer collaborate to find a solution that works for both of them. The software is tailored specifically towards what the client needs, which helps develop their business in an organic way.

4. Renewals

When hiring a customer success manager, it is important to be mindful of their role in the company. They should not act as an aggressive salesperson; instead they are on the clients side and just want to make sure that all parties involved know what will happen when renewals come up. This means making sure that your team knows about them coming up so you can negotiate successfully.

5. Upsells and referrals

For customers who are already subscribed, the salesperson should be constantly looking for opportunities to upsell and expand. The customer success manager is not about actively trying to find ways of making more money off a client; however, its their job (in many cases) to know when an enhanced subscription would benefit both parties.

6. Referrals and feedback

Customer success management is responsible for ensuring that customers have a good experience with your product. When they do, it’s much more likely that they will refer other companies to you.

7. Client advocacy

Customer success managers are the ones who can help you figure out what your customers need. They should be consulted when considering any new developments or changes to a product, and they should feel empowered to act as the voice of customer within their company.

What Qualifies as an Effective Customer Success Manager?

When hiring a customer success manager, you need to consider these factors:

  • A customer success manager with good emotional intelligence is able to empathize and understand the needs of their customers.
  • Good project management skills are essential for customer success managers. They will be working with two teams and need to know how much information they should give, who needs what tasks assigned, and when a task is completed.
  • Ive learned that there is a need for more feedback to the sales team in order to improve on processes. In particular, I want my staff members focusing on wow moments when they are demonstrating products.
  • Before you even hire, use a take-home skills test to see how they would handle an actual conversation that happens often in your business. Its best if it is taken from one of the conversations that occurs frequently.

The four points below will help you find the right customer success manager candidate for your team. However, dont be afraid to think outside of the box. You know what type of person would work best in your organization and culture better than anyone else so make a hiring decision with that knowledge.

Interview Questions for a Customer Success Manager

You’ve already learned about how to find the right person for your team. Now, let’s talk about what you should ask during an interview. Here are some of my favorite questions:What is your greatest accomplishment? Where do you see yourself in five years time?

  • I have a hard time explaining what our product does. Can you explain it to me?
  • How do you approach problem-solving?
  • The answer to this question is a little bit more difficult, but it really comes down to your customer. In order for you to upsell someone, they need either want or need something else in addition
  • What experience and skills do you have that would be helpful in this position?
  • Have you had experience with sales professionals in your current role?

When you hire a new salesperson, it is crucial to ask the right questions. There are many different factors that go into hiring and every company has their own approach. The most important thing for any manager or executive is knowing what they want from the position.

Utilize Customer Success to Create Lifelong Customers

The role of a customer success manager is vital for any company that offers subscription-based products.

A customer success manager is more than just someone who helps reduce churn. They are also responsible for helping customers make the most of what they have to offer.

Customer success managers often have a broad role in the sales process, and should be involved at every stage of it. They help make sure that prospects are aware of all possible options before making any decisions; they also continue to support customers after they’ve closed on their purchase.

Need Help Automating Your Sales Prospecting Process?

LeadFuze gives you all the data you need to find ideal leads, including full contact information.

Go through a variety of filters to zero in on the leads you want to reach. This is crazy specific, but you could find all the people that match the following:Ā 

  • A company in the Financial Services or Banking industry
  • Who have more than 10 employees
  • That spend money on Adwords
  • Who use Hubspot
  • Who currently have job openings for marketing help
  • With the role of HR Manager
  • That has only been in this role for less than 1 year
Just to give you an idea. šŸ˜€
Editors Note:

Want to help contribute to future articles? Have data-backed and tactical advice to share? Iā€™d love to hear from you!

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Justin McGill
About Author: Justin McGill
Justin McGill is the Founder of LeadFuze - a lead generation platform that discovers new leads for you automatically. Get 25 leads free.