Could a “Customer Success” Mindset Save the CX Industry?

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Does the CX industry need saving? I say yes.

At an industry level, Forrester’s CX research finds “widespread stagnation“. Furthermore, CustomerThink’s study found just 25% of CX initiatives (funded and staffed) claim quantifiable business value or competitive advantage.

Source: CustomerThink CX at a Crossroads research

The majority of the rest are stuck in a “developing” stage doing good work in most cases, but not seeing the results necessary to justify future investment. And mark my words, most CEOs are not true believers in CX — they want to see how CX investments lead to a better business.

Here is the executive summary of the report, with the five major conclusions:



  1. Winners define a CX vision beyond fixing problems.
    Improving major touchpoints such as customer service, while a common and often necessary starting point, does not yield the best returns. CX initiatives enjoy greater success when they improve the customer journey or deliver a unique experience to differentiate in the market.
  2. Winners insist upon a CX business case.
    While senior management will want to see “hard numbers,” building a business case is not just about an ROI calculation. Ideally, value from a CX initiative should be clear to each stakeholder. Even when not formally required, CX leaders should prepare a business case in the language appropriate for decision makers.
  3. Winners are more advanced with feedback sources, loyalty metrics, and journey mapping.
    Winning CX initiatives make more extensive use of non-survey sources such as text and social media. They are also more likely to use custom loyalty metrics to track success, at the expense of generic metrics like NPS and CSAT. Journey mapping is also done more thoroughly, including future state maps and customer validation.
  4. Winners invest more in CX talent and technologies.
    Areas of relative strength include driving organization change; experience design and innovation; and metrics and ROI – three of the six major skills recommended by the CXPA. Winners also cite better tools and systems to support customer feedback, analytics, and omnichannel experiences.
  5. Winners have a stronger customer-centric culture.
    Executives at companies with Winning CX initiatives do a better job of “walking the talk” in customer value creation, customer delight, and customer feedback and action. Winners also have fewer issues with executive sponsorship, management support, employee motivation, and measurement systems.

Since publishing this research early this year, I’ve been thinking about possible “fixes” for CX industry woes. I think the root cause of CX performance issues is too much attention on fixing problems and streamlining processes, and not enough on strategy and culture.

For this article, I’d like to propose a rethink of CX to focus more on “customer success” — helping customers achieve their goals, not just complete a process or interaction “effortlessly.”

Customer Experience vs. Customer Success

Nearly four years ago I wrote an article “Customer Success Management: Training Wheels for CXM?” which concluded:

Customer Experience Management (CXM) … has become an all-singing-all-dancing Theory of Everything. As CXM proponents keep expanding and redefining what it means, it could scare off some executives wanting to take more practical steps with a clear ROI.

And…

So, maybe CSM will be training wheels for a full CX transformation (a multi-year effort). That’s not all bad, you have to start somewhere. I just hope that companies start with a clear understanding that customer success should be defined in customer terms.

It’s easy to say that CSM is a subset of CXM. Because if you take the grand and glorious definitions of CXM literally, everything is a subset of CXM.

But as my study revealed, CX execution hasn’t matched CX proclamations. I’m now thinking that business leaders would be wise to organize their CX efforts around the concept of “customer success.” That’s really what being customer-centric is all about, and would help CX pros get out of the find/fix paradigm driven by surveys.

Update: Customer Success is Not Just About Retaining SaaS Customers

Customer Success (CS) started with a focus on B2B customer retention with SaaS vendors. In the past four years, however, CS has expanded to include B2C and other industries. Gopal Srinivasan, Deloitte Partner and Customer Success practice leader, says CS interest is growing for non-tech companies, although it may be called different names.

A new Deloitte study (“2019 Enterprise Customer Success (CS) Study and Outlook“) found 30% of CS leaders in non-SaaS tech (hardware and semiconductor) firms. The study concluded that CS was going “mainstream” and “driving tangible value,” with over half of the 50 respondents reporting at least 10% higher up-sell and cross-sell revenue, renewal rates, and annual recurring revenue.

One key insight: “CS is a developing mindset and needs to be infused across the enterprise.”

A CS mindset exists where a constant focus on the customer is maintained throughout all touchpoints and value creation stages. However, survey results indicate that CS functions have been largely focused on working with customers only once a transaction is completed.

Here’s a breakdown of time spent, showing the skew to post-sale activities.



Source: 2019 Enterprise Customer Success (CS) Study and Outlook, by Deloitte

Srinivasan believes CS vendors are ahead of traditional survey-focused EFM providers, because “you can’t rely on customers responding to a survey.” CSM solutions (more on that in a moment) were designed from the start to analyze a variety of data from product/service usage, transactional systems, surveys, and even social/public sources. For CS success, he advocates:

  1. Create incentives for existing roles to focus on post-purchase and retention.
  2. Look for the data you already have to create insights about what customers are actually doing.

I agree. People and systems are the keys to great execution of any strategy. But you must start with the right mindset.

CSM Solutions Are Customer Data Centric

It’s hard to imagine doing a Customer Experience initiative without a survey. The problem is that many companies never get out of the survey rut. Surveys help find problems which stimulate fixes — all good and necessary work for sure — but there never seems to be time to process all the other customer data.

CSM pioneer Gainsight flips the script to focus on customer data first. Mike Berger, VP of Product Marketing, says the platform has evolved considerably in recent years, thanks to $160M in VC funding with a priority on product development. The company just announced the Customer Cloud, a suite of products that includes Gainsight CX to capture, analyze, and act on customer feedback. So now companies don’t have to go elsewhere for a survey solution. Other capabilities include a Customer Data Platform, an in-app Product Experience solution, and a new Revenue Optimization solution to help drive renewals.

Not to be outdone, Totango offers a DNA-CX Customer Centered Data Platform which can process a variety of customer signals, including usage, logins, CRM data, support tickets, and yes, surveys too. Totango CEO and co-founder Guy Nirpaz hinted that they may offer a survey solution too. He positions CSM as a kind of “customer operating system” that helps identify customers at-risk for churn and drive action. He touts SAP as their largest customer and sees expansion into the broader tech space, with budding interest in other industries such as healthcare, financial services, and manufacturing.

Enterprise Feedback Management (EFM) vendors are not standing still. Medallia acquired CS vendor Strikedeck recently, giving it strong capabilities for both B2C and B2B companies. Together they will provide a “360-degree views on customer account health,” analyzing customer data on usage, adoption, billing, and more. Other vendors, such as Clarabridge, InMoment, MaritzCX, and Verint are moving in the direction of an integrated “VoC command center” as discussed in my recent article on advanced VoC analytics.

And that’s not all. Specialized vendors are popping up to help the cause. Like Brightback, launched in early 2018 by Guy Marion to “personalize the cancellation process at scale.” When the personal touch of a CS rep is not feasible, a cancellation request can trigger a personalized offer to reconsider. Marion says they’ve seen a 15% average save rate across multiple clients.

The Right Mindset, Not Buzzword Compliance

Buzzwords don’t matter to customers. You can call your company’s customer-focused efforts CXM, CSM, CVM, or even CRM — so long as you’re attending to customer needs and helping them succeed.

For example, I’ve written before about outsourcer TELUS International, which describes itself as a “customer experience innovator.” However, a conversation with CEO Jeffrey Puritt revealed they have a Customer Success mindset, coupled with strong execution.



Puritt says the firm starts with a goal of doing more than just supplying clients with “bums in seats,” to see “where we can offer assistance to help them achieve their objectives.” They have an “excellence team” to help with onboarding, and track success with a “health check audit” on every program and customer. Accounts are ranked on a scale of 0 to 3, where the top end of the scale means the client is using multiple solutions and considers TELUS International a trusted advisor. For example, one client started with simple in-app support for an online game but eventually was receptive to using other data analytics services that drove better success metrics.

So, back to my question. Could a “customer success” mindset help improve the odds of CX success? Please share your views in the comments.

Disclosure: Examples in this article were drawn from discussions I’ve had with vendors who reached out to me in recent weeks with briefing requests. They are not necessarily representative of all the industry activity nor should companies mentioned be considered an endorsement. Some vendors have been sponsors of CustomerThink.

23 COMMENTS

  1. Bob, think you are on target with the “sommelier” role of CS manager, however i think we have all been in an intimate and regrettable situation where the CSM (or equivalent) says something to the effect that they are not empowered to help. While people are critical they are embedded in the systems in which they operate. The two have to be synced and aligned. An old boss once sent me email that said simply “city hall” when i was upset about a customer situation that i could not resolve due to policy. I asked him what he meant. He shot back another short missive “you can’t fight it”. We got to make sure city hall is helping not thwarting good customer service. My two to three cents..

  2. Spot on, Bob. Customer Success has two critical roles in CX: 1. Ensuring customers realize the full value of their investment, and 2. Building trust in the brand. This must be an active, carefully orchestrated process, and it certainly isn’t confined to SaaS. Customer Success isn’t just a function, but a philosophy and a cross-functional approach to doing business. To be effective, it must be designed in, sold in, delivered, supported and reinforced. And as the world shifts to subscription-based models, it’s not optional.

  3. The goal of customer success is to create customer value: Customer Success is a long-term, scientifically engineered, and professionally directed strategy for maximizing customer and company sustainable proven value. (from Customer Success Association). The goal is to create customer and company value (which are inter related). Note CX is not the goal but a tool,

  4. I’m in strong agreement with the five elements which drive superior CX performance at the companies most effective at designing and delivering value. And, I’m further in strong agreement that, in addition to the roles of employee behavior, brand trust, and proactive inside-out processes, the path to superior CX is principally through stakeholder-centric culture and disciplined, focused, financially-emphasized value strategies. The challenge with a ‘customer success’ surrogate, replacement label for customer experience is just that – it’s sort of a ‘pick-your-meaning’ label, not a singular passion and obsession for enterprise-wide stakeholder value. This, i.e. the passion and obsession for stakeholder value, to me, is what really needs to be continually reinforced if CX is to keep itself from soon going the way of re-engineering and CRM.

  5. Hi Bob, good points, but the real answer to the CX ROI dilemma is the recipe used by CX leaders:

    1) Characterize the intentional customer experience, end-to-end, required to contribute meaningfully (i.e. better than customers’ alternatives) toward what your core growth customer segment is trying to get done through your type of solution.

    2) Unify the C-team and their collective and respective stewardships around #1: reality-check what’s at-odds with it and resolve those gaps. Pay particular attention to capex, opex, and compensation/rewards criteria and harmony. Use a 3+ year horizon to rise above current parameters.

    3) Translate #1 to the managerial context for all roles and charters (departments, initiatives, alliances, contracts, etc.). This puts the horse before the cart, as customers are the source of budgets, salaries and dividends. Monitor and reward collaborative achievements in preventing issue recurrence and occurrence; nurture anticipatory, proactive CX excellence (this is more than CX design). This is insurance against costly PR fiascos we’ve witnessed of rogue decisions by a few that went hugely viral.

    4) Unify customer touchpoints and everyone who has a hand in them: share info, plans, lessons learned. (Care, success, CRM, VoC, loyalty, UX, etc. in vast majority of firms never get together or share transparency).

    5) Establish at least an annual cadence for cross-functional root cause (a) actioning of pervasive thorny CX issues (i.e. ease-of-doing-business), (b) creativity in applying customers’ wish lists, (c) ease-of-work.

    6) Fine-tune CX techniques (care, success, analytics, digital, CJM, VoC, etc, etc).

    *Surprise: journey mapping and NPS are optional in establishing the above recipe.

    *Customer success is part of #6. Its business orientation and focus toward customers achieving their goals are vital to CX practices at-large, but customer success is not the real solution to the CX dilemma. The growth of customer success often indicates sloppiness among the rest of the company in missing the mark on #1 (i.e. Band-Aid(R) on cancer). It takes #2-5 to setup customer success for highest value to customers and investors.

    #2 is the secret sauce of CX leaders: intentional CX is the guiding light for how they run their business through-and-through.

    #1-5 are what’s missing in 90% of companies. That’s what’s holding back even CX leaders from breaking through the 70-75% range on the Forrester CX index.

    #6 is what everybody is focused on. It’s largely transactional and infrequently yielding differences that the whole customer base will reward. Frankly, #6 represents a lot of REMEDIAL investments: making up for things that should have been done right the first time (“right” being defined by customer). #1-5 are the keys to making #6 more proactive and high-value, sustained high-ROI.

    #1-5 are kinda hard, but a one-time investment in embedding 1-5 into the company’s fabric will significantly reduce silos over time and will continue to reward customers, employees and investors for years to come — and have an enduring positive multiplier effect on the ROI of #6.

  6. Lynn, thanks for your comprehensive response.

    What my article is about is included in your step 1.
    >>
    Characterize the intentional customer experience, end-to-end, required to contribute meaningfully (i.e. better than customers’ alternatives) toward what your core growth customer segment is trying to get done through your type of solution.
    >>

    Especially “what your core growth customer segment is trying to get done.”

    However, I think some CX pros define this as complete a process, and have lost sight of the larger purpose of why the customer is engaging to begin with.

    “#1-5 are what’s missing in 90% of companies. ”
    How can we fix this?

  7. Unfortunately, one does not look at poor customer experience from a value destruction view point. Deepak Sood from Singapore reports:
    Talking about creating value for a customer.

    FlixBus you just destroyed one and lost a customer. Your scheduled bus doesn’t turn up for 2 hour and there is no SMS or phone call. Customers stranded at Düsseldorf train station and finally taking train at much higher price since its last minute booking and later take taxi to reach the destination – Langen which by right should not have happened had your bus service was on time.

    Your Facebook messenger is operated by your AI software which doesn’t understand customer issue and it says – issue will be passed on to a human. Fantastic I must say. How sweet is that to hear after been stranded at a bus stop in excess of 2 hours while waiting for your bus ?

    How great does that feel ? Awesome customer experience?

    You not only destroyed customer value but also the most importantly trust. Your brand equity is just not about top line revenue but also about customer experience and trust.

    You just ruined it.

    We all ignore this, and look at creating positive experience. What value destruction!

  8. Right, Bob. The main thing missing in the way Customer Success and/or Customer Experience pros characterize intentional customer experience is permeation of that knowledge across all the value-creators in the company and its ecosystem. There’s a pervasive idea that it’s all about getting the customer to do things, but these fields are actually more effective when their focus is mostly about getting the company to do what’s needed to make it natural for the customer to do those things (without much need of special programs such as CS, CRM, CX, etc. to a large degree).

    The other thing missing in the way intentional customer experience is characterized much of the time is that it’s too much about the product and not enough about a greater outcome. Like the old story of the 3 brick layers: 1st one said he was building a wall, 2nd one said he was building a church, 3rd one said he was bringing people closer to peace. (or something like that) The point is that the greater outcome from the customer’s viewpoint frees up creativity across your company to find any number of ways to make the customer’s greater outcome a reality.

    #1-5 can be done through the Customer Excellence DNA(TM) methodology that ClearAction Continuum has developed. It’s described briefly in my article series and summarized in What is Customer-Centricity DNA? I’ll be glad to discuss it with interested readers.

  9. I guess the same could be said from the part of the world I am from. CEOs launch CX initiatives so that they could be part of the bandwagon. Winners clearly tie the improvement of value to their business strategy.

  10. A great article with much to think about. Thank you for posting! This is the first thing I thought about as I was reading the article: Customer success is just a part of the overall experience – and what could be one of the most important parts. Typically, a customer success “conversation” comes just after the customer makes their purchase. They know it may be coming, but it typically doesn’t happen until after the sale. And, that part of the experience is sometimes what validates why the customer decided to do business with the company. It’s an important part of the experience that creates confidence and trust. That can lead to more business, and even to loyalty.

  11. Hi Bob, in a brief answer to your question I’d say yes, if customer success is defined more broadly than it usually is. Customer is successful if (s)he achieves the desired result with minimum friction. Usually customer success looks into more service oriented aspects like ‘customer can successfully and beneficially operate the licensed/subscribed to software’. If the broader definition is in place it helps, because it also instills an outside-in view.

  12. Hi Bob
    Great article with lots of good points and it’s a definite ‘YES’ from me! Can’t help thinking that anyone thinking about this stuff as an ‘initiative’ or a ‘project’ is on to a loser. It’s about establishing a clear vision for success for the whole business, getting ‘buy in’ to that at every level and embedding a culture that makes it a way of life or ‘the way we do things around here’ in EVERY aspect of the customer journey. Everyone in the business needs to recognise that customer success results in business success and be clear about the part they play in that. They also need to be given the tools and support to make it happen… consistently!

  13. Great piece, Bob. You always have such solid advice and you underscored the importance of basic culture change management concepts that help ensure sustainability.

    I am often asked how the CX winners differ from the “also rans.” It think it is fundamentally a passion for customers and ways to make their world better. I once asked Southwest Airlines CEO Herb Kelleher the secret of his customer-centric organization and he said, “Love. We love them and they love us back. We also love our associates and love us back.” While I knew there was more blockling and tackling than an emotional feeling, I also believed he was correct. What is the fuel for all the other valuable relationships in your life? Perhaps if we spent as much time getting our leaders to “fall in love with their customers and clients” as we did trying to get them to “fall in love with our supercool technology, big data, or whizbang solutions, the embrace of CX as well as its sustainabiliity would not be so challenging. A friend of mine who is a top marriage counselor tells me starts his marital counseling with the following sentence: “My role is not to help you folks manage your differences; my role is to help you fall in love again! ” Corny? You bet. But, talk to the leaders of the best customer experience organizations in the world about their secrets, you will get some version of Herb’s council.

  14. As you mention in the article, “I just hope that companies start with a clear understanding that customer success should be defined in customer terms.” I agree, and think this points to the heart of the issue. Customers are the arbiters of customer success, and for me, their opinion is the only one that matters. What complicates the discussion is that success is exceedingly hard to define. What’s successful for one customer (e.g. ‘product/service performed to vendor specification’), doesn’t cut it for another (e.g. “product/service did not provide us a sustainable strategic advantage”).

    As a vendor, the three things that are consequential to me when it comes to success are how my customers 1) measure and envision their success, 2) the role they see for my offering (or my competitor’s offering) in achieving that outcome, and 3 ) post-implementation or use, whether they perceive what my company did, delivered, or provided was integral to the result – assuming the customer considers their overall result or results successful.

    While a vendor’s “customer success mindset” can improve probabilities of positive results, there are many variables vendors don’t – and can’t – control for how customers ultimately assess their success – or lack. For vendors, understanding which variables are consequential in successful outcomes, and the degree to which the vendor can control them is crucial for planning, risk mitigation, resource allocation, and staff development.

  15. To your question, ‘Could a “customer success” mindset help improve the odds of CX success?’ the answer is “yes!” We’ve been writing about CSM for a couple of years now. Originally our curiosity was spurred by the fact that CSM practices overlap considerably with B2B CX practices in terms of the tools and techniques they use. But we quickly found another layer of interesting stuff going on with CSM including, as you point out. a strong tie to measurable business results. CX professionals in both non-tech B2B companies and B2C companies could learn a lot by studying CSM. So far, though, not a lot of that is happening. (We predict that more will, though.)

  16. The problem is we see CX through a CX lens and therefore ignore what people not using the CX lens are saying. Some telling comments:
    Yanasekaran Thangasamy: I guess the same could be said from the part of the world I am from. CEOs launch CX initiatives so that they could be part of the bandwagon. Winners clearly tie the improvement of value to their business strategy.
    Harley Manning: To your question, ‘Could a “customer success” mindset help improve the odds of CX success?’ the answer is “yes!”….CX professionals in both non-tech B2B companies and B2C companies could learn a lot by studying CSM. So far, though, not a lot of that is happening.
    Andy Rudin: As a vendor, the three things that are consequential to me when it comes to success are how my customers 1) measure and envision their success, 2) the role they see for my offering (or my competitor’s offering) in achieving that outcome, and 3 ) post-implementation or use, whether they perceive what my company did, delivered, or provided was integral to the result – assuming the customer considers their overall result or results successful.

  17. Bob, like a sip from a fire hose… The imperative, for business, that emerges from the article, to me, is this: How can we develop or improve systems (CEM) that will ensure that employee behavior (CS) produces (CX) lifetime customer loyalty? While I am a fan of the early E. Deming/B. Joiner emphasis on systems, processes, data, and SPC, even these two renowned statisticians, in their data-driven scientific approach to developing/delivering product/service quality, eluded to the “magic” to which Chip referred. Joiner, for instance, wrote: “Helping everyone to begin to see beyond their own individual jobs–how they aren’t just making travel reservations, or lubricating equipment, or polishing floors…but are a part of a system that provides a product or service that makes an important difference in their customers’ lives.” He’s referring to qualities and attributes that cannot be measured as easily as compliance and defect rates, such as: a vision, aspirational goal, or organizational purpose and how one’s daily job responsibilities connect to it. So, while it’s critical that reservations be in order, equipment be lubricated, and floors be polished, it’s equally important that these employees understand and reflect WHY they do WHAT they do, HOW they do it, at work. The result gets us closer to the confidence and trust that Shep mentioned may lead to more business and the ultimate goal of CEM: lifetime customer loyalty.

  18. According to McKinsey, 70% of transformation programs fail, and since CX is transformation for most companies, a 25% win rate doesn’t seem that bad. Still, CX may learn from CS but it assumes that CS is doing better. Is ‘easy’ access to behavioral data such a benefit that the CS transformation is easier to achieve? According to our discussions with CS vendors they struggle with some of the same challenges as the CX industry. See for instance: https://www.gainsight.com/blog/customer-success-identity-crisis/

    You mention that both Gainsight and Totango use attitudinal data, i.e. customer feedback. They do it because the data crucial to the success of a customer—something their clients know and ask for. Similarly, as a CX vendor we use both attitudinal and behavioral data to analyze customer experiences.

    So, what’s the difference between CS and CX besides the original focus on different data sets? CS is often owned by one ‘vertical’ unit and may seem like a more simple transformation. CX is often an enterprise transformation with a higher risk of failure. Still, CS is only as successful as their ability to impact other units to improve the customer experience.

  19. I find a lot of truth in Jergen Christensen’s observations, and also in the article he shared: https://www.gainsight.com/blog/customer-success-identity-crisis/ At the end of the day delivery of perceived value, with enterprise profitability in the doing, and evidence of the supplier’s product or service helping the customer achieve desired objectives is what CX is supposed to be about. As suggested in my response near the beginning of this thread, CS/CSM as a label feels very much like a CX rose by another name.

  20. Thanks to all for the great discussion.

    It seems there is general agreement that a ‘customer success’ mindset would help improve CX success. Especially for CX teams that have lost sight of the forest (customer success) for the trees (interaction and process improvement), it might be time for a reset. Are experiences helping customers achieve their desired outcomes?

    A few other comments:

    Lynn, I think you’re right that CX pros are not thinking enough about the “greater outcome.” However, based on my recent research, it’s not because of too much focus on the “product” but rather because of over emphasis on interactions, processes, and customer service.

    Shep, in my view “customer success” is not a conversation nor it is just something to evaluate after an experience. Although that appears to be the way many B2B orgs implement CSM. Rather, I believe experiences should be *designed* from the beginning to deliver outcomes/success that the customer seeks.

    Steve, loved your quote from Joiner and this is exactly my point. A customer success mindset is about seeing beyond the completion of tasks or even experiences, to provide a “product or service that makes an important difference in their customers’ lives.”

    Jørgen, you’re right that only 30% of transformation efforts succeed. However, my study didn’t ask this question. The definition of winning was simply: ability to quantify benefits or achieve competitive edge. A complete “transformation” is not necessarily required. Regarding the technology underpinning CX and CS efforts, I think they will merge in the coming years. CX (EFM) tools are increasingly using behavioral data and CSM solutions use surveys as just one of many inputs.

    Harley, I completely agree that “CX professionals in both non-tech B2B companies and B2C companies could learn a lot by studying CSM.” Let’s hope they look beyond the narrow definition of CS as a B2B “save” function and more as a strategic orientation.

  21. Yes Customer Success Mind Set can Indeed save the CX Industry. A good strategy for an excellent experience for customers leads to Customer Success. it is like starting with an end in mind.

  22. Hi Bob, thanks for your thoughts about my comment above: “Lynn, I think you’re right that CX pros are not thinking enough about the “greater outcome.” However, based on my recent research, it’s not because of too much focus on the “product” but rather because of over emphasis on interactions, processes, and customer service.”

    The greater outcome refers to the customer’s ultimate job-to-be-done. Such as risk reduction, productivity increase, simplify their life/business, etc. That higher-level context is very powerful. It gets us out of the weeds of product, interactions, processes, service, etc. It shows us the forest in addition to the trees.

    I’m always glad to help readers on their quest to identify “ultimate jobs-to-be-done” — there’s an art and science to it referred to here: Customer-Centricity by Discerning Customer Satisfaction Outcomes vs. Enablers. (FYI, there’s a very efficient way we’ve discovered to reveal these higher-level contexts that is not described in this article.)

  23. Bob, great article! On the topic of customer success I just moved into a new home and signed up with AT&T and could see a huge improvement in their B2C customer success efforts. A couple things they did differently. First the installer helped me download their app for managing my internet service and checking my speed. Second, before he was done, he had a customer success person (I forgot his actual job title) meet me at the home and the guy asked me questions like “Here’s the amount I have you paying monthly. Is that what you expected?” and “Did the installer help you manage your internet service using the app?”

    It’s one thing to talk about customer experience and another entirely to strategically place people in positions in our customer journey where there’s typically aggravation and instead create success. Just one example where I saw customer success in action and it really worked.

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