Closing a sale is a big moment. It’s when you can celebrate all the work that has gone into landing a new customer. It’s where the efforts of all your people and your CRM and MarTech tools have been delivered. It’s a pop-the-champagne and breathe a sigh of relief moment.
It’s also just the beginning. Forward-thinking marketing teams take an ongoing approach to managing the customer journey. But the hand-offs between traditional tools can leave a gap in engagement between signing on the dotted line and renewal negotiations. This is where customer value management can make all the difference.
What has long been seen as a powerful sales tool is now also an important component of ensuring customer success. During the sales process, a focus on value likely established a clear business case for your product as well as baseline measures for the areas of impact most important to your new customer. Without a commitment to customer value organization-wide, it’s easy to miss capitalizing on this foundation as the relationship deepens. Therefore, having value tools that can be used by both your sales and customer success teams is critically important.
All the information and insights gathered during the sales process can prove equally valuable in managing adoption and growing utilization of your products. After all, customer success is grounded in the idea of delivering meaningful value to your customers.
The issue for most customer success teams is how to make that value quantifiable and present it in impactful ways. This is where having a real-time dashboard of value delivered can make all the difference in retention and renegotiation. Instead of playing defense, resorting to discounting, or putting up with high churn rates, leaning into customer value management gives customer success teams the power to bypass traditional procurement hurdles, paving the way to upsell/cross-sell using real-world ROI and value metrics.
For example, ServiceNow, a leader in digital workflow optimization, made customer value management tools available to its teams company-wide. This enabled anyone responsible for customer-facing activities to calculate and share in-depth value metrics. As a result, everyone was able to anchor their conversations, presentations, and materials in the measurable value that ServiceNow brings to its clients. As a result of these efforts, the company improved its win rate on field-led activities by 1.7X and doubled the attach rate on sales opportunities.
This is a clear recipe for creating customers for life, which is the ultimate measure of success for how well your teams have managed the customer journey. Making value a cornerstone of your communications and relationship building is an essential ingredient of this. Quantifiable value conversations have the power to unlock new levels of engagement. This is how companies make the transition from vendor to trusted advisor. And in doing so, cross-sell and up-sell become organic conversations stemming from an elevated perception. In this way, relationships become long-term partnerships and customer long-term value (LTV) and net recurring revenue (NRR) are dramatically enhanced.
By focusing on value, companies have the insights they need to make the most of existing relationships and grow them based on a shared understanding of mutual success with their customers. Regular communication of the value delivered, instead of only when renewals are on the table or customers are complaining, enables companies to lay the foundation more proactively for a win-win lifetime relationship. If your customer success team can elevate their conversations to the executive level, renewal conversations can focus on what you can do next versus debating what has been accomplished in the past. It’s all about speaking the language of business and financial value. This also makes these interactions more centered on planning for the future instead of negotiating and justifying the relationship.
Value Is An Ongoing Conversation
As needs change, businesses evolve, expand, and pivot, what your customers value changes over time. Regularly re-visiting the value metrics both your team and your customers are focused on is essential. Part of customer success engagement should be evaluating and establishing new benchmarks for success to ensure that you and your customers are planning for the future together. This is the essence of a shared customer journey.
By putting value at the center of your customer journey, your teams have a compelling way to build on success and create a virtuous circle of customer value. And the results of including value across the full customer journey are clear: Increased customer satisfaction. Reduced customer churn. Higher Net Promoter Scores (NPS). Greater Net Recurring Revenue (NRR). It all adds up to a bottom-line benefit that is powerful, measurable, and meaningful.
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