How to Get Product Managers Excited to Work with Customer Success
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The “ right” kind of feedback comes from ideal customers. The wrong kind of feedback can lead to wasting time on features that don’t serve your target audience. Customer success has already identified ideal customers. That means they know who to survey, and when they send the survey, they’ll get higher response rates.
A customer success team is only as good as its information. But why aren't other departments clamouring at their door for these insights too? most of us come from a tradition of strict departments. You do your thing; I'll do mine. Which, along with Territorialism and downright inefficiency, leads to data silos. You need a way to get your insights heard. Because you can’t give your customers what they need by yourself.
Product managers and engineers have a very different way of communicating than Touchy-Feely customer success agents. Just like a good marketing campaign, lead with benefits to them (rather than the customer) and put them in bullet points with Metrics if possible. Product managers and engineers have a very different way of communicating than Touchy-Feely customer success agents.
Customer success data can pinpoint the trouble spots that matter most. But cs can't fix these problems themselves; they depend on Dev to come up with the solutions. What you think should be a "simple" change isn't actually asking for an overhaul of the entire Website. You can help Dev bridge that gap by understanding what the customer wants and making sure it Aligns with what they truly need. If you want a product to work,
When support tickets rise en Masse, many Ceos hit the panic button. This sends Dev into a flurry of activity (disrupting what they were doing) what if we built a new feature? What if we did one big update? What if we asked each departing customer why they’re leaving and solved all of those issues? It’s the fast track to the dreaded "next feature fallacy" and the "product death cycle"
Customer success already builds out ideal customer profiles, in which the ideal customer’s pain points and ideal outcomes are recorded. It’s not a great leap to also create user stories that help Dev answer the question, “why are we doing this?” and Prioritize accordingly. Success can even take on some of the burden of Prioritization, using user stories, as long as it’s part of a group effort — everyone has to agree to a unified scheme based on user impact, effort required and company priorities.
Show Product Dev how their hard work impacts real people. Share customer stories and anecdotes. Share your numbers and stats. Celebrate successes.
Too often, Dev is removed from the effects of their work. They don’t get to see the end users succeeding. They don’t see how what they do makes peoples’ lives better.
This is a vital element to engagement and a big part of enjoying what you do.
So give Dev credit where it’s due, and introduce them to the customers they’re really working for.
Which means that the company benefits, because you’re effectively maximizing lifetime value (aka. minimizing churn), which leads to growth.
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