No matter how efficient and great your customer service team is, to build long-term relationship with customers your company needs a customer success manager. This position requires high level of responsibility and strong communication, presentation as well as organization skills. The teamwork of sales and customer service helps to win new customers, assist them during their journey and solve their issues. The task of a customer success manager is to bridge the gap between sales and customer service teams and to ensure that prospects become long-term customers.
What is the difference between customer service and customer success teams?
While customer service representatives communicate with customers when the issues arise, the task of customer success managers is to solve problems before they happen. They set customer value as their goal and drive the most out of the product to win customer loyalty. On the other side, customer service agents solve issues and set their resolutions as their goals. They work in short-term perspective and act when customers contact them. The task of customer success managers is to build long-term relationship.
Main responsibilities of customer success manager
CSMs complete a variety of tasks, the final goal of which is to build long-term customer relationship. Here is the list of the main responsibilities of customer success manager:
- Onboard new customers: it is very important to educate customers and explain how to use your product or take the most out of your service. Onboarding of new customers is one of the main priorities and tasks of customer success managers. The smoother this process is the higher are the chances to build long-term customer relationship.
- Post-sales support: customer journey does not end with the first purchase and the task of any customer success manager is to follow up with customers to renew their contracts prior to their expiration or offer new useful products based on their preferences.
- Speak for customers: advocating customer needs is one of the tasks of customer success managers. As they work directly with customers and thus have a clear understanding of their likes and dislikes, they can improve the overall customer service based on feedback and reviews.
- Bridge the gap between sales and customer support departments: customer success manager is the missing link between two departments – sales and customer service. One of the tasks of CSM is to build effective cooperation between these departments.
- Reduce customer churn: since customer success managers oversee the onboarding process and follow up with customers, making sure their experience with the product or service is excellent, it helps to improve customer loyalty and as a result reduce customer churn rate.
What makes a good customer success manager
Besides products which meet requirements, customers expect personalized customer service. That is why the role of customer success manager in your company is very important. However, how to hire the right specialist and what kind of skills should this person possess?
- Deep product knowledge
- Active listening
- Excellent communication skills
- Creating thinking
- Dealing with customer complaints
- Data integration
- Time management
- Project management
- Cross-selling and upselling
For any organization that follows SaaS model, it is important to have a customer success manager as part of the team. For large and medium organizations, it is necessary to have the entire department for this purpose. High level of customer satisfaction and loyalty is the result of excellent work of the customer success department.