How Customer Success Managers Can Tackle the “Churn Demons”

* This article is part of a White Paper called “How to Tackle the Top 5 Pain Points of Customer Success Managers.”

Customer churn in the SaaS space is defined as the act of not renewing the subscription (and thus the association) with a particular application platform. In short a high churn rate indicates potential dissatisfaction with a software solution.

According to SaaS experts, the total lifetime value (TLV) of a client is an important metric in gauging the health of the company.

Churning or customer attrition, forces a low TLV of subscribers and this in turn indicates slow growth, low profitability and sluggish or no expansion. Most customers defect if:

  •  The software doesn’t solve the problems or extend the benefits it initially promised.
  •  The customer interaction with the help desk is unsatisfactory leading to an overall poor experience.

Tackling churn is a pressing problem for SaaS enterprises in growth and scale mode and the following strategies help tackle the issue.

  •  Understanding the attributes of a good, high TLV customer is sometimes the first step in the direction of acknowledging and reducing churn. Customer success managers must work in collaboration with the data analysis unit to come up with the traits and tendencies of subscribers who derive excellent value from the software.

This information can then be used to create experiences and triggers which lead other clients to mimic the same actions in the same sequence. At the end of the day quality and continuous engagement deter attrition. It may not be a formula to eliminate churn, but it is better than a shot in the dark.

  •  Proper onboarding value transmission is another critical factor that can help tackle the churn issue. An imperative for CSMs is communicating and ensuring alignment between what the product actually offers and the expectations set on the website, through the marketing collateral and via the interactions with the sales team. Over promising and under-delivering tend to aggravate and initiate churn.
  •  Encouraging adoption is an attribute of a prosperous SaaS business. A subscriber can’t hope to solve pressing problems if the tool is not used in the first place.

Adoption is the result of creating intuitive tools that don’t confuse first time users and the ready availability of helpful content and/or training material to guide subscribers to the features relevant to their business needs.

Workday is a human capital management platform and because of their area of expertise, it is only natural that they be expected to understand human psychology well and thus successfully reduce customer attrition (or churn). As a CSM in charge of ensuring and supervising client engagement:

  • Custom Walk-Thrus can be created for specific industries mimicking the actions taken by premium clients over the phases of onboarding, usage and upsell so that subscribers from the same niche can be prompted to follow the best path as indicated by research.

This can not only improve client retention, it can actually help users generate more value from the application.

  •  Helpful relevant content can be added with highlighted tooltips or balloons calling attention to information that can encourage and facilitate active adoption and embracement.

This article is part of a White Paper called “How to Tackle the Top 5 Pain Points of Customer Success Managers.”

Claim your free copy by filling the form below.

The White Paper covers a range of topics including:

Chapter 1: Onerous Onboarding

Chapter 2: Overwhelming Support Requests

Chapter 3: Tackling the Churn Demons

Chapter 4: Software Upgrades and Updates

Chapter 5: Promoting Renewals and Up Sells

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Mark Silver is the Lead Author and Editor of SuccessFULL. SuccessFULL was created in order to be a spurce of news on the fascinating developing world of customer success. On SuccessFull, Mark shares his thoughts on customer success issues, with the hopes to foster a discussion and interaction with anyone interested. The goal of the blog is not to one-directionally publish information, but to create a full engagement between many voices, so that we can all learn from each other.