Customer Success Magazine
By Mikael Blaisdell

Over in The Customer Success Forum on LinkedIn, there is an excellent discussion about what should be in the technology toolkit for Customer Success Managers and teams. The essence of the new profession is the management of customer lifetime value, and the key is the data — you can no longer afford to sell a technology product and leave the burden of getting value from it to the customer.  To get the data about how the customer is using the product and getting value –or not– from it  in time to make effective use of that information to retain the relationship requires having and properly using the right tools.  While some of what’s needed can be gathered manually, that approach is not sustainable.  Does your Customer Success team have the technology resources they need to get the job done?

Here is the current summary of the Customer Success Technology Suite; please join us in the Forum to comment.  The topic is also being discussed in the Customer Success Research group on LinkedIn.  (Updated 12/29/14)

The Elements of a Customer Success Technology Suite

Red Ruler SMKey Functions Across All Components

  • Alerts
  • Search
  • Recording
  • Reporting
  • Proactive Communication

Communication Channels

  • Phone
  • Video Conferencing; 1 to 1 and small groups
  • Email; external and in-app, with auto-gathering of context data
  • Text Messaging
  • In-app broadcast/messaging
  • Webinar / Online conferencing
  • Co-browsing; Remote Product Support
  • In-app automated error reporting
  • Online Community Management (Forum, Group chat, etc.)


  • Application usage monitoring and reporting
    • Logins
    • Specific application feature usage
    • Event alerts when key usage trends vary high/low from norm
    • Compare usage by specific customers against customer base to identify relative health, opportunities
    • System/Network monitoring to detect outages or performance issues specific to customers
  • Customer Monitoring and Reporting
    • Account Management; renewals, Upsell, Cross-sell prospects
    • CSAT / NPS
    • Customer Relationship Health Scoring
    • Financial News pertaining to the customer
    • People News feed per customer; employee / staffing / organizational changes
    • Service Level Compliance; reporting of actual and promised, comparison with customer base average
  • Data Analytics
    • Predictive analytics
  • Knowledge Content Management and Distribution
    • Knowledgebase and Content Engineering / Management
      • Self-Success articles on usage for maximizing customer productivity and profitability that can be automatically emailed to customers based on definable trigger events
    • Community Management; both Internal and External communities
    • e-Learning management; Virtual events, virtual learning resources (LMS)
      • Training videos on key points of the application
  • Internal Communications / Collaboration Management
    • Team knowledge inventory; alerting members about significant customer successes, external content, etc.
    • Virtual teaming for the discussion and resolution of issues
  • Customer Success Group Management
    • Individual rep utilization tracking
    • Case records of customer-CSM interactions
    • Interaction logging; Category, Duration, Outcome, Volumes, Channels
    • Financial reporting of overall team operations, effectiveness

For an up to date list of all known vendors of the main elements of the Customer Success Technology Suite, visit:

Questions?  Contact me via the link below or reach out through The Customer Success Forum on LinkedIn.

December 9, 2014