..For SaaS companies, making the sale is just the beginning of a customer’s relationship with your business. How you engage with customers after the sale determines the likelihood of a customer’s retention and whether you can reduce churn. It’s all down to your customer success team to decide whether they should interact with customers on a high-touch or low-touch model. And that decision will be different for every business.
Personalization of your customer success interactions is critical for earning happy customers. When using your software, it’s not guaranteed that customers will understand how to use it without external help. Whether this help involves a personal customer success manager will depend on the customer success model you choose and has implications for ultimate revenue.
Making the most of data can tell you when customers need help. It is essential for both the models. Customer success should be based on a customer’s actual needs, whether that’s offering them a self-service resource or prompting your customer success manager to pick up the phone.
What is High-touch Customer Success?
First, what is high–touch customer success? It means your customers have a personal, one-on-one relationship with a dedicated customer success manager who is responsible for ensuring your customer has success with the product. The CSM is not only available for any questions your customers might have but might also proactively reach out to prevent churn.
The CSM for the high-touch customer will hand over from the sales team and contact the customer during onboarding to take them through in-depth training. In this model the customer success is often most appropriate when you have a particularly complex product or offer an enterprise solution. These sorts of customers will be happy to pay more for a highly personalized customer success approach that offers them their own CSM.
High-touch customer success managers intimately know the needs of their customers and can provide them with timely assistance. They will get in touch when they anticipate that customers are getting stuck. Or aren’t making the most of a particular feature. Frequently, CSMs will use technology such as a CRM or customer success platform to provide them with relevant data.
What is Low-touch Customer Success?
A low-touch customer success model can more appropriately be thought of as self-service, or a high-tech approach. Instead of being assigned a personal CSM to take care of their needs, customers are encouraged to take advantage of digital resources. This may include video tutorials, knowledge base articles and walkthroughs that help them find success with your product.
Lower value customers are more likely to be approached with a this model because you want to save your CSM’s time for customers that represent more value to the business. A low-touch model can be scaled that much more easily because your self-service resources can help an infinite number of customers. Many popular products like Netflix and Spotify uses this customer success model. This is to engage customers, and never require customers to contact a human.
The Difference Between Low-touch and High-touch
If you deny customers the opportunity to interact with a CSM on your team then you may not necessarily be saving money. They will simply contact your support team for help which takes up valuable resources. Often, the most effective customer success model is a blend between human and technology. It frequently utilizes a customer success platform to identify when a customer needs help.
The difference between low-touch and high-touch is that low-touch more easily scales without requiring any further resources. While high is constricted by the number of CSMs currently working on your team. However, low is a false economy if you are not truly serving your customers. Because if using your product is too difficult they will simply churn.
Customer success platforms like Churn360 can help you offer high-touch customer success at scale. Because you are able to monitor large volumes of customers and take advantage of automations that take the work out of customer engagement. You can deliver a high-touch model that feels like low-touch. It can erase some of the boundaries between these two approaches to customer success.
Growth with High-touch and Low-touch Approaches
Ultimately, both the customer success models are reliant to some extent on digital resources. These can provide instant help to your customers. You can serve more customers by employing a low- model across your whole customer base while saving the high model interactions for when they are really needed.
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The point of using a these model to engage with customers is to ensure account renewals and revenue expansion. This ensures that customer lifetime value remains high. The bulk of a SaaS company’s revenue comes from its existing customers. It is critical that CSMs effectively use resources to keep churn under control.
A highly productive customer success team will be able to maximize customer satisfaction and ensure your company continues to grow. Once a customer has been won, all your efforts must go into retaining that customer. It can be done through technology or human intervention. The model you choose depends on your resources and the type of customers you have.
Customers who are well-attended to have a higher lifetime value. Because they are more likely to renew their subscription with your SaaS company. Ultimately, customers don’t necessarily expect in this model. They may be able to serve themselves with digital resources, and indeed prefer it that way. It’s up to your company to decide how much time your customer success managers should devote to interacting with individual customers. And whether your business has the budget for it.
Many companies will opt for a mixture of both approaches depending on the value of their customers. A particularly large account that would represent significant profit loss if they churned may warrant a high-touch approach. While other lower value customers may be best served through a low-touch model.