A Post-Sales Engagement Horror Story
It was a dark and stormy night; the rain fell in sheets and my bank had left me on hold for more than two hours. . . . . . .
Alright, it wasn’t dark or stormy, but it was more than likely raining (Pacific Northwest, am I right?) and the bank had most definitely kept me on hold for more than a couple of hours.
You may ask, why in the world did I stay on the phone for over two hours? Well, because of the multiple phone calls I had made, and the multiple emails I had sent before this phone call, I had never gotten through to an agent or received a response.
The issue at hand was with a credit card feature that I had used multiple times (one that had failed to satisfactorily work in the past too). I sent emails and I called so many times to no avail. Eventually, I reached out via social media, and low and behold – I received a call back within days.
Now – I felt incensed that it was my responsibility to reach out to this bank over and over and over and over to get any sort of resolution to my problem but that indeed was the case.
And the kicker? When I finally did get a response, they had no idea about my case. I had to repeat the issue I had explained multiple times already.
This might not be a horror story with gore but it’s definitely frightening – especially for anyone working with a company whose post-sales engagement is as reactive and ineffective as this bank!
Why a Reactive Post-Sales Engagement Process Sucks
As a customer of the same bank for several years, I assumed that my account and customer history would be intact and available, no matter who I was speaking with, yet there seemed to be no process in place to ensure that.
Post-sales engagement is an extremely important aspect of the customer journey. Customer success (CS) is responsible for ensuring customers are highly engaged with a product or solution and, more importantly, that they are satisfied and find value.
My customer satisfaction level was dropping by the minute.
By only responding to a social media message and providing a totally disjointed, ineffective post-sales experience to me just didn’t cut it. The reactivity of the bank’s CS and Support teams showed me how ill-prepared the bank was to deal with customer issues, and indeed to work towards resolving them.
Eventually, we came to a satisfactory agreement that resolved my issue, but I feared that if this was to arise again, I would be right back to holding for hours on end.
Ultimately, I switched to a new bank and a new credit card (with better features I might add), and they lost a long-standing customer who has told multiple people about this awful experience, no doubt losing them future customers.
They could have done better, and so could many companies out there.
How to Provide Better Post-Sales Engagement
Customer Success plays a critical role in cultivating a best-in-class customer experience, retaining customers, and expanding usage of a brand’s product suite and services.
Customer Success Managers (CSMs) should be focused on fostering deep relationships with their customers, understanding their business and needs, acting as a customer advocate and delivering solutions to meet their challenges.
It seems pretty simple: CSMs deliver on customer successes. In reality though, CSMs are at the mercy of the post-sales engagement process followed at their company. Or in some cases, the lack thereof.
Building a winning customer engagement strategy isn’t that complicated though. In six steps, a CS team can build an engagement process that leads to better customer satisfaction, higher customer value, and improved CS metrics including retention and revenue.
- Align around the customer
- Create a hybrid engagement strategy
- Coordinate customer engagement efforts
- Find the right partners
- Segment engagement tactics
- Score customer engagement
We delve a little deeper into each of these steps in the and offer tips and insights into how best to achieve better customer engagement.
If you really want to craft a winning experience for your customers, you need to look at customer engagement in its entirety – who you’re talking to, how you’re communicating, what tools you’re using to do it, and how you can measure and optimize the process.
Ready to knock your customer engagement out of the park? Get a free copy of the eBook Driving Adoption and Increasing Engagement in your Online Community here!