Three Steps to Customer Success in a SaaS World
We’ve all heard the adage that keeping existing customers is less expensive than acquiring new ones. For SaaS companies, this is especially salient. The SaaS model provides customers with more flexibility and lower costs. It also means that keeping customers successful – and securing a renewal one year later – is critical to building a sustainable business.
Here are the three steps we’ve found at GoodData to help build long-term, successful customers.
Step 1: Stay in touch
Making a customer successful is an ongoing process –– it requires a commitment to innovation and customer engagement. By working with customers to understand their needs, your company can continually improve while getting buy-in on the roadmap.
To succeed, turn your customers into valuable partners. Reach out to your customers on day one to establish clear communication channels and help them understand next steps. Then, stay in touch regularly. A quiet customer does not mean everything is going smoothly – having an outreach plan will help you catch concerns early and keep customers engaged.
At GoodData, customers have one main point of contact throughout their life cycle. This person can marshal the resources needed to make them successful, and also looks for opportunities to add business value by sharing GoodData improvements.
Step 2: Take advantage of your usage data
Cloud-based businesses have unprecedented access to product-usage data. This data can provide insights into customer behavior that helps you stay ahead of your competition.
To track your growing customer base, build analytics that quickly show usage trends. If a customer’s usage is falling below a baseline, create an alert to contact that customer immediately. Catching and addressing negative trends early is key to retaining your customers.
GoodData tracks usage to identify at-risk and happy users. We have asked some of these customers to write guest blog posts, serve as sales references, and participate in events to share their experience with GoodData.
Step 3: Get a holistic view of customer satisfaction
Customer knowledge lives throughout your company. CRMs, accounting systems, website traffic analytics and other tools contain part of the customer story. But to keep customers onboard, you need to understand their entire experience.
Make sure you identify the data you need and where it exists in your company. Then, create a process to share insights from this information. At GoodData, we pull together sales information, usage data, communications history, satisfaction surveys, and more, and share it across the company to:
- Quickly understand the health of our customer base;
- Increase customer satisfaction and engagement;
- Identify and retain at-risk customers;
- Find upsell and cross-sell opportunities; and
- Efficiently predict and track renewals
Spotlight on customer success
As the SaaS model proliferates, smart customer management is taking center stage. Companies need to build close relationships with customers and leverage technology to stay competitive. Help your customers succeed and you’ll receive a standing ovation.