As the post-sales point of contact for the customer (the CSM), it’s imperative that you’re aware of any agreements or points of concern raised by the customer along the buyer journey. How to do this?
Create a culture of cross-departmental alignment and enforce transparency of communication.
Any developments that manifested between the sales team and the customer need to be disclosed to the appointed CSM, as it will impact deliverability. Make sure that every department – from product, marketing, sales, and CS – are all on the same page when it comes to delivering consistent messaging to the customer.
Marketing lays the foundations for sales to fully close the deal and hand-over to the customer success team. Aligning on who’s said what down the sales funnel isn’t only necessary, it’s the underlying secret to a successful company.
But how to align these three functions with the goal of driving revenue? And how can communication be clarified?
Here’s what Brittany Yandura, Customer Success Manager (CSM) at Fieldguide, has to say about this:
“Often, the biggest gap is in making sure [marketing, sales, and customer success] align their quarterly and annual goals. If they’re running in different directions from the get-go, it’s difficult to come back from that.
“Before a company’s OKRs are finalized, there should be a review between department heads to make sure their OKRs aren’t contradictory or impossible to accomplish simultaneously. Hopefully, the goals of these individual groups support the goals of the organization and are similar.”
Michelle Wideman is the Chief Customer Officer (CCO) at Onna, and has similarly expressed the critical importance of creating a cohesive pool of information pertaining to each prospect/customer. One of Michelle’s biggest gripes is when each department asks the same, or similar, questions to the prospect during the pre-sale cycle, which could be wholeheartedly avoided had there been clear internal communication:
“Let’s say you have a Business Development Representative (BDR) ask the prospect questions, and then the Technical Resource Manager comes in and qualifies further.
“The last thing in the world you want is for the CSM to come in and ask: ‘Oh, why aren't you buying my product?’ I mean, the customer’s head is bound to explode!
“So, this internal onboarding step really ensures that we're presenting all the data to the customer in the right fashion, where they feel like we've listened to them and can help them reach their goals.”