Common Mistakes Startups Make in Customer Success

Cairo Amani
May 13, 2019 · 3 min read
Neglecting the Customer Experience is pretty much the same. (Credit: Unsplash)

I’m excited, Customer Success is rising on businesses’ radars. What was almost unheard of a decade ago is at the tip of people’s tongues in conversations around growth and expansion. As learning materials and business solutions pop up, startups with sensitive growing customer bases should hone in on Customer Success strategy as soon as possible. Here are common mistakes small business’ make when it comes to their customers.

  1. They Confuse Success for Support: Customer Support is a vital service but it’s not the same as Customer Success. In order to nurture and grow your relationships with your customers you not only have to answer when they call, you have to pick up the phone. While support is reactive, Customer Success is a proactive partnership that allows for a customer to be guided through their experience.
  2. They Stumble through Onboarding: The onboarding process is extremely important to a new customer. Companies can make the false assumption that they can stumble through onboarding and clean it up later. A sub-myth, perhaps is that the renewal process begins a few months before the next payment, put your all into their EBR and wow them with the progress. But renewal begins as soon as they pay; the customer immediately begins deciding how they feel about their experience. So don’t just usher them through the door, roll out the red carpet. In addition, internal onboarding of team members is also important to the customer experience. In startups, onboarding new employees can be messy and jumbled and we might say that’s why you have to step up and be scrappy. But the employee experience effects the customer experience, no matter which business unit you join, which leads me to the next point.
  3. They Don’t Realize Customer Experience is a Shared Responsibility: While it may not seem like such a mistake to assume that Customer Success is only managed by the CS team, it can be harmful to small companies to not instill in everyone an understanding of their overlap with other teams and the customers’ ultimate experience of their work. The customer is the business and aligning with company goals means aligning with creating an excellent customer experience.
  4. They have a One-Size-Fits-All Approach: A small team with a large customer base cannot provide an equally in-depth experience to all customers — and they probably shouldn’t. Tiering customers and experimenting with strategies for different verticals will allow growing companies to learn and discover, ultimately providing a better experience for the customer and easing the stress on the org as a whole. By tiering your customers and varying their level of service, you don’t exhaust your resources on low ROI and have more opportunities to discover your ideal buyer.

I love startup companies and the potential you can almost smell when you walk through the door. I’m passionate about helping companies build and maintain strong foundations when they start out and create scalable processes for their customers. The best attribute to company culture is when the whole team lives for the same goal. Make your org a customer focused business and make your customer’s success your success.

Find me at www.cairo-amani.com

The Startup

Cairo Amani

Written by

Customer Success Leader and Consultant. I befriend all office dogs. Not all #techladies code. :) Find me on twitter @cairo_io

The Startup

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