If you’re considering a career in Customer success management, you may be wondering “is Customer Success Manager a sales job?” The answer might surprise you!
This article teaches you what a Customer Success Manager is, and what they do. Read on and you’ll also get the answer to the question, “is Customer Success Manager a sales job?”
Too often, customers are left to their own devices when they implement new software. Although they will usually have an Account Manager or primary contact assigned to them by the company, that doesn’t guarantee that they will get answers to their questions, it is a good start.
Poor onboarding and customers struggling to succeed in your product are two major reasons for customer churn. Fortunately, both of these issues can be easily fixed by having a dedicated person at the company who is focused on ensuring your customer’s success with your product.
Software companies are increasingly creating Customer Success Managers (CSM) roles. These people are responsible for helping customers succeed with their product. They work cross-functionally alongside support, sales, and product teams and are responsible for collecting and managing important metrics.
But more on that later. Let’s first look at what CSM actually means.
What is a Customer Success Manager? (CSM)
Customer Success Managers (CSMs) also known as Client Success Manager, a unique combination of customer service and sales, are the role of CSMs. Their primary goal is to support customers as they move from the prospect pipeline (prospects), to the support pipeline(active users).
They are responsible for maintaining customer loyalty and upselling existing customers on new features within the product. They also foster long-term relationships between their customers and ensure that they achieve the goals they set when purchasing your product. It’s a Tall order, right?
CSMs are a rapidly growing role in the SaaS industry. This is because happy customers result in less churn and more customer loyalty. It pays to invest in customers’ experiences and ensure they are as successful in the product as possible.
Customer success vs. Customer Support
We get asked a lot of questions about Customer Support and Customer success. It’s easy to get confused With customer success, as it is still a new field. but there is a clear distinction: proactive and reactive responses.
Customer Support teams are often on the frontlines. They respond to live chat messages, handle questions about features and pricing, and answer ad-hoc queries about functionality or pricing. Customer Support teams tend to be more reactive in responding to customers.
This means that they respond to all feedback and questions as they come in. Customer success teams, On the other hand tend to be more proactive. They try to anticipate their customers’ needs and provide resources and answers before they actually have to address the issue.
Customer success teams are more focused on the high-level issues. They can help customers navigate new areas of their product, or resolve issues that prevent them from reselling or upselling.
Customer Success Managers are in High Demand
SaaS companies are beginning to recognize the value of client experience and the demand for CSMs is rapidly growing. LinkedIn ranked CSMs third in 2018 as the most promising job, and the demand for CSMs has only increased since then. The position is often well-paid.
Glassdoor reports that the average national salary for CSMs is $81,414. It can range from $55,000 to $126,000 at the highest to the lowest.
What does a CSM do?
Now we all know what a CSM does, how they differ from customer service, and how valuable they can be to a company.
What exactly does a Customer Support Manager do? What are their day to-day responsibilities? Let’s break it down.
1. New customers are being welcomed by CSMs
As such, it’s important that the CSM ensures that the customer has a positive experience. Onboarding typically involves educating customers about the product’s features, functionality, setting goals for the customer, and getting them up to succeed in achieving those goals. It’s a great way to introduce yourself to the customer and foster a relationship.
2. CSMs create relationships
The most important thing that a CSM can do for their customer is to build a lasting relationship. This will allow customers to feel at ease and be able to ask any questions they may have about the product. It can also lower the likelihood of customer attrition.
If a CSM can build a strong relationship with the person who is responsible for the account, even if they leave the company they were working for, they will carry your relationship to the next company. a strong relationship is not only good for customer satisfaction but can also help to create advocates for your product or bring in new customers if the person changes roles.
A CSM should have the ability to build strong relationships with their customers through good communication, product knowledge, and friendly face.
3. CSMs reduce churn
A good CSM will be able to access all these details for every customer and will contact them if any of these scores indicate risk. For example, a low satisfaction score or a dip in activity. CSMs are responsible for reducing churn and increasing renewal rates.
4. CSMs cross-sell and upsell
CSMs are responsible for reducing churn and upselling as well as cross-selling the product. Cross-selling is the encouragement to customers to purchase additional functionality or features as part of their initial product. Upselling, On the other hand, refers to encouraging customers to buy a tandem product that will improve their experience but is not necessarily a part the base product.
The CSM must understand how to best cross-sell or upsell customers and which features, functionality or additional products would be most beneficial to each customer. This is where trusting your customer is key. If they trust you and know that you are looking out for their best interests, they will be more likely to buy from you span>
5. CSMs analyze and collect feedback
Listening to your customers on a regular basis or asking them questions can make it difficult to understand their needs and keep them satisfied. CSMs should be checking in with customers regularly and collecting as much feedback as they can. CSMs will often use surveys, announcements or regularly scheduled check ins to ensure that their customers are getting the best product possible.
6. CSMs are the voice of customers
CSMs are often the most trusted people in a company since they have the best relationship with customers. CSMs are often advocates for customers and make sure the entire organization understands their needs and the benefits of the product. Many teams don’t have much interaction with customers on a regular basis.
Key Metrics to Customer Success Managers
You will be responsible for collecting, tracking and analysing important metrics for your Customer success team. these metrics will vary depending upon the company and the product. We’ve listed the six most commonly used metrics within Customer success team.
CSMs often keep track of the customers activity within your product. This is a common metrics they use. You can track the number of unique users who are using your product each day by tracking Daily Active Users (DAU), or Monthly Active Users(MAU).
it’s important to define what “active” user means to your team when calculating user activity. Is it when they log into your product? Is it when they click on an attribute or open a page?
Once you know what an active user for your product is, you can calculate how many users you have daily, weekly, and monthly. If your DAU and MAU metrics are growing steadily, then users may be satisfied with your product. However, if they are dropping or stagnant, it might be time to look at your product.
Onboarding engagement rate
Customer satisfaction and success is directly related to the onboarding process. A negative experience onboarding can lead to customers abandoning your product and thinking that the rest of the product is just as bad. You can ensure that your customer isn’t confused or discouraged by your onboarding process.
Are they clicking on all the tutorials as they go through onboarding? Are they exploring all the features of the product? Are they seeking additional support because they are confused? all of these metrics will help improve your onboarding experience and give your users all the tools they need to succeed.
It’s great to have new customers. Increasing your customer base with new users can help you grow your business. If users only try your product once and then stop coming back, it could be a sign that they don’t see the value or understand your product. CSMs can find this a problem as it can increase churn and hinder your business growth.
your retention rate is a measure of how many customers are gaining value from your product. Calculating your retention rate is as easy as taking your active users and dividing that number by the total users over a given time period.
Retention Rate = # of active users /# of total users
Once you know how many customers are returning to your product, then you can target customers who aren’t returning with additional messaging and educational materials to help them see the value of your product. If your retention rate is low, you might reach out to them and ask why.
Expansion revenue refers to the percentage of your new revenues that comes from existing customers. This is also known as upselling. Are they upgrading to a higher-tier service? Are they paying extra for more functionality?
Are they looking for more seats to allow them to use your product with more people? You can use expansion revenue to determine how valuable your product is to your customers and whether they are willing to invest more.
to calculate expansion revenue, take the new revenue from upsells over a time period and divide it with the revenue you had during the previous period. This equation would look something like this if you were tracking this number month-to-month.
Expansion revenue = upsell revenue / revenue from previous month
As mentioned earlier, one of the main goals of a CSM is to increase expansion and encourage sales, so it is important to track expansion revenue.
If customers keep coming back to your product time after time, it is a good indicator of customer satisfaction. This is where Net Renewal Rate comes in. This metric is used to determine whether customers are renewing accounts or upgrading or exploring new features in your product.
a Net Renewal Rate of over 100 is the goal. This means that your rate for expansion and renewal is greater than your rate of churn.
To calculate the Net Renewal Rate, multiply the value for renewals by the value for expansion and divide that number by the total value all contracts up for renewal.
Net Renewal Rate = ($ of renewals +$ of expansions) / Total $ contracts available for renewal.
Bottom line: Is Customer Success Manager a sales job?
So, is Customer Success Manager a sales job? Customer Success Managers play an important role in helping customers get the most out of their products. They work closely with support, sales, and product team to ensure that customers have a positive experience and are able to achieve their goals.