Customer Success Management – The Psychology and Implementation of Customer Champions

Given how much the success of a company is dependent on the success of its customers, it is surprising that customer success, as a field, is only just beginning to gain popularity.

You ‘the business owner’ are not the hero. Your product or service did not make the customer successful. Your customer makes their own success. By accepting that, you put the customer first.Brian Gladstein

Everyone has heard of fields like sales, marketing, customer service etc. But customer success management? What’s that?

Very simply put, the field of customer success management focuses on the customer’s definition of success and how well they believe they’re reaching it. It’s about thinking from the point of the view of the customer, making them successful in their aims and thereby benefiting the company which is selling them a product or providing them with a service. As the title of this Forbes article says, “Customer success management is proving that the customer made the right decision to do business with you.”

The Role of the Customer Success Management

The role of the Customer Success Management or CSM can best be understood by taking an example. Let’s say that you run a yoga studio. If you hire a Customer Success Manager, their job will be to make sure that the people coming to your yoga studio achieve the goals they have set for themselves. In order to do this, the CSM will have to think from the point of view of the customer.

Basically, Customer Success Management needs to know the ins and outs of consumer psychology to understand why customers behave the way they do. They need to have a genuine interest in helping customers to get what they want in their lives.

What Does Customer Success Management Mean Today?

The truth is that everyone is looking for success in their lives. All the things we do—working jobs, running businesses, going shopping, even dating and having relationships—are geared towards being more successful. This doesn’t mean that people aren’t looking for happiness; they are. It’s just that the idea of success is deeply ingrained in our culture.

Customer Success Management from the Outside vs. Success from the Inside

Success is one of those things which looks different from the outside and from the inside. When you look at someone else and think that they’re successful, you’re taking in their appearance, their professional life, their relationships, their popularity, their financial status etc. Money is generally a leading factor in determining whether someone is successful, at least from the outside.

However, as this article from Inc. puts it, “If you believe success is simply making (or having) a lot of money, you may be setting yourself up for failure.” This is because, from the inside, success is determined by whether the things you have in your life are bringing you true enjoyment. A successful day is one in which you string together a number of “Ahh” moments, in which you feel good about the things you do. You might have a good career, a good relationship, and a good family from the outside but if they’re not bringing you that sense of satisfaction on the inside, then you’re not going to consider yourself truly successful.

It’s important for customer success management to keep this in mind and figure out how the product in question can lead the customer towards their definition of success.

Gearing Up for Customer Success Management

Whether or not a customer is going to be successful after using your product or availing themselves of your service can only be completely determined after they make a purchase. Each individual is different and has different expectations and requirements. However, there are certain things you, as a business owner, can do to make sure that you’re helping your customers achieve their aims.

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