Customer success is one of the most trending vertical. It's a whole new strategy when it comes to delivering maximum value to your customers.

In this episode, Sue Duris, customer-obsessed strategist, talks about what is customer success and customer experience.

We discussed the "Holy Trinity of Growth", which says, Culture + Customer Experience + Employee Experience = Growth!

Sue gave some tips on personalizing customer success and the role of AI in customer success.

From this episode, you can get a good understanding of building a customer success strategy and identify trends in 2019.

You can connect with Sue on LinkedIn here - https://www.linkedin.com/in/sueduris/


Difference between customer success and customer experience?

The beauty with the customer experience and customer success is that their function and the role in a company, they're on very parallel paths and they work very closely together.

So my all-time favorite definition of customer experience comes from Forrester, and they say that customer experience is every interaction or touch point your customer has, with your brand and not only includes the, what's the actual interactions, but also the how's, the perceptions, feelings that the customer has when they have the interactions.

So there are three important things with really good customer experience.
1. It's useful and delivers value
2. It's easy to use, there is low or no friction.
3. It's enjoyable to use.

Now, customer success, I have three different definitions to kind of paint the picture of customer success.

  1. Customer Success is the relationship between a vendor and its customers with the goal being to make the customers as successful as possible with the product and in so doing to increase customer lifetime value.
  2. The Customer Success Association has a similar view, they say, customer success is about customer relationship, retention, and optimization and the most effective way to keep your customers is to make them as successful as possible in using your products.
  3. The third definition comes from the technology services industry association. They defined customer success as in the intersection between the promise of a supplier's technology and the customers' desired business outcomes.

The place where these 3 definitions intersect is where a company's product is helping the customer to be successful.

What is the holy trinity of growth?

The Holy Trinity of Growth states that when you align culture with employee experience and customer experience, you achieve growth.

When brands can understand what the customer experiences, we as brands can paint a better, more accurate picture of how customers are behaving at different moments and we're able to better determine how to improve each of those moments. How to connect the dots so that we can optimize the experience for customers and they can have better experiences.

Doing all that requires a digital transformation and culture change. Sue did a lot of reviewing, studying and talking with people and came up with this thing called "The holy trinity of growth".

Everything revolves around growth and what the Holy Trinity of growth states is that when you align culture with employee experience and customer experience, you achieve growth.

I'm seeing more alignment with the customer success function and customer experience, aligning with the product, aligning with sales. So that when a customer has an issue, everybody's on board. And when everybody's aligned, it helps brands be more proactive. You can deliver that personal experience and optimize it.

From the customer experience side, using emerging technology, to augment the experience. AI is a big thing. Some organizations understand the purpose that they have for AI and how they can help the customer with it.

Augmented and Virtual Reality is another big trend. For example, you can try pieces of furniture before you buy to see how it looks like in your house. So I see a very strong trend in augmenting customer experience. It's a really interesting thing to know that companies are using these technologies to improve the customer experience.

How do you differentiate customer experience or customer success between B2B and B2C companies?

From a customer success standpoint, it’s B2B. Customer Success has as its foundation B2B because it is mostly in the B2B SaaS space.

With customer experience, you can go direct to the end user (B2C) or the business (B2B). Omnichannel is very key in the B2C space, like retail, for instance. But I’ve been seeing B2B companies taking a page out of the retail playbook to implement omnichannel in their B2B customer processes.


Are you investing time in customer success and customer experience at your startup?

Do you want to ask Sue a question? Just put it in the comments section below.