Customer Retention = Customer Success = Customer Retention Plan

Nalpeiron Software Analytics Blog, January 2014


Customer Retention = Customer Success = Customer Retention Plan


In the world of the micro-transaction, customer loss includes everyone who decides not to renew their monthly $4.99 Netflix streaming plan. Every customer who decides not to keep going with their extra 1 Gig of data on their phone.  Every customer who declines to pay for daily insurance on their car rental. 


In the B2B world, the end user makes their decisions to continue with a product based solely on how successful it makes their business outcomes.


In the B2C world, businesses can appeal to entertainment value, luxury appeal, and a host of elements that simply have no place in the work environment.  In B2B, the main way to insure our success is to keep looking 2 steps ahead to insuring our customers’ success. 


A couple of approaches from completely different angles can work here.  First, use the data.  Usage tracking software analyzes customer churn to show where problems occur.  But frankly, churn happens on the late side.  It’s better not to have to get a customer back.  The focus needs to be on customer retention. 


Instead use the data for insight into where customers are slowed down and having difficulties. Consistent and ever-increasing user adoption of software features is necessary for up-selling, but, more importantly, it shows that the customer is comfortable and learning the product. 


Secondly, ask the customer what they need to succeed.  There’s nothing like basic communication to help you build the tools that your users need.


Put a Customer Retention Plan in place. The Customer Retention Plan begins before the customer has just been acquired and is triggered as soon as they make their first transaction.  The Customer Retention Plan can include a Customer Service Plan, Customer Communication, Surveys, Building Trust and many other strategies. 


The first month of the Customer Retention Plan is crucial and is the time when a customer can be won or lost forever.  Many companies assume that when customers first buy a product that the first blush of excitement carries them through, but the opposite is true.  That’s when human resistance to change is at its highest and fear of the unknown, especially regarding software, is most likely to trip users up with user adoption challenges


So put a lot of focus on that first month.  Help customers over the initial hurdles and into successful use of your product.  They’ll thank you for your support with longer-term use and greater application user adoption in the future.



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