Scaling Customer Success to the Rest of Your Customers

If you already have a customer success practice, you may be doing a good job managing your largest, most strategic accounts. Meanwhile, the rest of your customers—those “long tail” or “C” accounts that represent as much as 80% of your customer base—are churning. Maybe you’re ignoring increased share of wallet opportunities through upsell and cross-sell, or you’re simply not ensuring these customers get the full value of your product or solution.

No matter which segments comprise the rest of your customers, you know who they are. And you know losing them would hurt.

Companies of all sizes struggle with how to manage the rest of their customers at scale. A growing number of customer success leaders under pressure to do more with less are seeking fresh ways to realize efficiencies while maximizing every revenue opportunity. Digital engagement is the smartest way to achieve both. In fact, if you’re not already looking at digital as the means to scale, you’re being left behind.

Are you:

  1. An enterprise with embedded customer success but are only using it with your biggest customers?
  2. A smaller or start-up company with a nascent customer success practice?
  3. A company of any size and customer success maturity who’s struggling to serve and keep its tail accounts?

No matter your situation, we’ll help you transition from the inconsistent, low-touch engagement model your long-tail customers are likely accustomed to, to scaling customer success to drive massive wins for you both.

“If digital is not a part of your strategy, you have to catch up on that front.”
Angel Rogers, Head of Global Customer Success for Rockwell Automation and MarketSource webinar panelist

(Listen to the replay of From Customer Success to Value Realization.)

Why Scale Customer Success?

As a customer success leader, you’re looking for cost-effective, efficient, profitable ways to manage ALL of your customers. That demands you scale customer success. More on that in a moment.

But first, what is scale? At a high level, scaling is efficiently repeating core functions to establish and increase their profitability. For customer success, this means further moving from a reactive to proactive mode while simultaneously increasing asynchronous, digital-first, and self-serve customer enablement. It involves:

  • Uncovering your customers’ lived experiences with your product. What are they experiencing? What do they want to get out of your product to realize its maximum value?
  • One-to-many customer interactions that feel high touch and solve bespoke customer issues
  • Proactive guidance around engagement across standardized touchpoints along the customer’s journey
  • Insights into common customer trends and patterns you can feed back into your digital enablement strategy
  • Better means for customer success managers to make proactive recommendations on account expansion

And it’s the only profitable way to serve the rest of your customers. A one-to-many approach allows you to serve your at-risk customers in a way that’s efficient for you yet feels high touch to them.

It’s all about optimizing customer motions and outcomes by using tech-enabled customer success to create digital touches across targeted segments. Explore this in more detail in our blog, A Maturity Model for Building a Customer Success Practice.

“Think about what you’re doing on a daily basis that drives goodness for your customers and what you could do to automate those, or to bring more efficiency to that, more professionalism to that, and take it from there.”
Jeff Heckler, Director of Customer Success for MarketSource

No matter your situation, there are high returns to be had from taking a digital + scaled approach to engaging with your long-tail customers:

  • Saves at-risk customers
  • Scales with your customer base
  • Delivers ongoing value realization for your customers
  • Makes customers sticky
  • Produces greater customer intimacy
  • Decreases churn
  • Improves customer lifetime value
  • Maximizes portfolio profitability and resource efficiency

Digital Customer Success: The Linchpin to Serving Long-Tail Customers

The transition to digital customer success is a movement driven by inflation and fluctuating economic conditions, advances in digital engagement technology, and its promise of delivering a better customer experience.

Digital is helpful with managing all your accounts, but when it comes to your long-tail customers, it’s a game changer. Digital allows you to make customer engagements feel high touch, even when they’re not, efficiently. It also enables you to target your underserved accounts with consistent, personalized engagement and deliver them an experience that makes them feel as valued as your big accounts do.

It also enables asynchronous digital customer self-service—an important part of the future of scaling customer success—whereby customers have push- and on-demand access to the content and support they want, how and when they want it.

A robust digital engagement strategy automates those daily tasks your reps undertake every day, such as task reminders, customer health checks, responses to customer FAQs, knowledge base updates, or sending email templates after customer onboarding or cadence calls with your customers. A digital engagement strategy is a reliably efficient framework that will hold for your team, no matter how they change or grow. As you build your team, you can institutionalize it and make it inherent to your culture and practices.

The ideal way to support digital customer engagement is through a customer success ops-owned tech stack that offers streamlined and standardized systems that:

  • Reduce administrative tasks for customer success managers
  • Deliver value to your customers and a uniform customer experience across your customer base
  • Strengthen your customer relationships, which translates to more profitability for both reps and customers

A tech stack encompassing client engagement and management tools, sales enablement software, email and marketing technologies, allows you to apply automated digital touches and prescriptive human outreach, all while capturing the voice of the customer. This keeps sellers proactive and in green time. It also allows them to spend more time on high-value tasks, which reduces staff turnover, lowers customer management costs, and increases efficiency.

How MarketSource Does It

We advise our clients on the principles and methods that make the most of their current resource investments and position them to serve all their customers in a more efficient matter, while targeting underserved segments with digital-first engagement methods.

Your tech stack should enable:

  • Anyone connected to the account will be able to rely on automation that tells them where to be, the type of touch, with whom, the frequency of engagement needed, and recommended follow ups. They’ll also be able to see account health scoring.
  • Anyone on the team will have clear directives about what action they should take with any level of client at any given moment.
  • A deeper level of insight into what’s going on in your customers’ businesses, enabling greater intimacy that allows you to tune into and deliver the value they WANT to get from your product.
  • A talk track module that helps everyone on the team – from individual contributors to the head of the company – know when/what type/what language to use when they engage with customers. Consistent messaging provides for a cohesive customer experience across your brand from one rep to the next.
  • Your tech stack should synchronize and read data from your CRM to the email and marketing software you use to interact with your customers so you can be sure you’re providing sellers with consistent messaging and content.
  • Access to robust reporting capabilities and dashboards that establish a baseline of value realization and provide visibility across the organization to help you manage your progress toward your customers’ goals. It’s essential to give this level of visibility to both your front-line/upstream managers and across the organization.
  • A 360-degree view of the customer relationship, allowing everyone to see how each rep is interfacing with the client, benefiting customers and building team cohesion.

The best outcomes occur when all customer success teammates are on the same page, equipped to deliver a well-orchestrated service that translates into a world-class customer experience. A digital + scaled practice can return quick, low-cost, repeatable profits from an audience you previously dismissed because, while you attempted to manage them with an unsustainable, one-to-one approach, chances are, you weren’t managing well.

Ready to talk?

When you can’t afford every customer individual attention, we can step in with a Digital + Scaled Customer Success strategy that not only serves but saves the rest of your customers.

Author: Jeff Heckler

Author: Jeff Heckler

Jeff is Director of Customer Success Solutions at MarketSource. He is a leader with over 20 years of running customer-facing revenue teams for such organizations as SAP, Accenture, and Stanford. Jeff is an author, advisor, and speaker, and recipient of numerous industry awards. Most recently, Jeff was recognized as a Top 25 Global Customer Success Influencer, 2021, and named One to Watch in SaaS, 2022. Jeff serves on the Board of Advisors for The Customer Success Performance Index™, the Product Advisory Board for, and is the Principal Thought Leader–Digital CS for Practical CSM.

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