How Marketing Can Support Customer Success in Hard Times

Your job doesn’t end when you get someone to make a purchase — in fact, it’s just beginning. Returning customers are your best source of income, given that they can bring in business themselves. In fact, the ROI on a returning or repeat customer is between five and 25 times better than that of attracting a new customer, depending on who you ask.

That number becomes even more important in times of crisis like this. There’s no corner of the world or the economy that has escaped the reaches of the COVID-19 pandemic, and organizations in every sector are struggling mightily. What that means for you is that your existing customers might be the most precious commodity you have.

Where Customer Success Comes In

Customer success is the department dedicated to making sure your customers are successful with your products and services. It’s what it sounds like, right? They’re in charge of anticipating customer challenges, questions and needs after they make a purchase, then proactively answering and addressing those needs before the customer has a problem.

Customer success has become much more important in recent years, due mostly to how hard it is to acquire new customers. The world is becoming more accessible to customers, giving them access to more choices than ever before, and that means it’s harder and harder to stand out and make a sale. Keeping your current customers happy is imperative.

The Shortcomings of Customer Success

The problem with the customer success team is that they’re not marketers. Generally speaking, marketers generate leads before the sale and CS people take over after the sale. Marketers don’t spend much time on customers after the point of sale, so CS people do it themselves.

But they’re not trained to do marketing. They’re great at solving problems and one on one communication, but they fall short when it comes to large-scale customer communications and brand messaging — exactly the areas that marketers specialize in.

Enter Customer Success Marketing

Customer success marketing — often just called customer marketing — is a new strategy of aligning CS and marketing teams so that they complement each other’s strengths and compensate for each other’s weaknesses.

It starts with communication. The CS team is closely in touch with the problems that face your business’ customers. They know where they struggle to onboard, which features present the most problems, and which aspects of the product are the most useful. With that knowledge, they can predict which customers will be most likely to stick around in the long run.

The problem is, they don’t often share that information with the marketing team, which means the marketing team might be drumming up interest in features that people don’t actually like or want to use. If your marketing team is leaning on the fact that your software can be used on the go, but no one actually uses it that way, you’re wasting energy.

Conversely, marketers can help the CS team with communication. They spend all day crafting useful, intuitive content to help people choose the product, so it’s not much of a leap for them to create similar content on how to get the most out of a product. With language skills, graphics, and brand messaging guidelines, they can keep customers informed and interested much more effectively.

Why This Matters

When the two departments combine, your company becomes much more effective at nurturing leads and engaging with prospects. You have the skills of both mass communication and personal care at your disposal, for whatever situation might arrive. You have the knowledge to answer any question combined with the communication skills to get the information across.

Your customers will thank you. They’ll incorporate your product into their daily lives more quickly and easily, and they’ll get the most out of using it. They’ll stay for longer. And they’ll be more open to cross-sells and upsells, knowing that your product is genuinely useful.

Getting Started

If you need help getting your customer success and marketing teams to play nicely together, you’ve come to the right place.

“Madison Taylor Marketing knows the marketing world inside and out, from when a customer first hears of you to when they become lifetime advocates. If you need help getting started, get in touch.”

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