- Customer Value Led Growth
- How to prioritize like a Pro
How to prioritize like a Pro
Hi, Markus here. Welcome to a premium edition of the Customer-Value-Led-Growth Newsletter.
Every week, I share strategies, guides, and frameworks to help you create exceptional value for your customers and company.
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As a CSM, you are naturally wired to help people.
Without a doubt, it’s a noble character trait that makes you very likable.
But it’s also what keeps you poor on
because not all of your customers are meant to become successful.
The more time you spend trying to “fix” the wrong customers the less effective you become.
You are piling up “opportunity costs” because you could have spent the same time leading your customers with high success potential to success.
In the end, you are losing twice as despite all of your efforts the chance to prevent churn from the former is like 1%.
In today’s episode, I’ll share the Skill/Will Matrix I’ve recently discovered with you to help you distribute your time more effectively.
1. High Performers
Customers in that segment require little help from you if any at all. It’s tempting to lean back and don’t interfere. But that’s the wrong approach.
A high, almost perfect correlation exists between performance and revenue/profitability.
Customers who are getting a lot of value out of your product frequently hit a ceiling. Where they require additional resources, features, or products.
They are critical for your business’ success. Your churn rate in that segment should be 0. Except for reasons out of your control like going out of business.
Consequently, you should spot potential issues that put these customers at risk a mile away. Hitting them with a preemptive strike gives escalations not a chance.
If you are not regularly interacting with these customers, you will miss it. It also shows that you care about them boosting your relationships.
It also helps you to identify untapped growth opportunities like additional use cases or unresolved problems.
As an additional benefit, you might get to learn about the pillars of their success. Skills, knowledge, or processes that you can help your other customers to re-create.
2. The Untrained
This should be the largest segment of your customers. Sure, in a perfect world, that would be your high performers but that’s never going to happen.
Unless your company has set such high qualification standards that sort out everyone below (I haven’t seen a single company doing this).
In that segment, you will find the customers with the highest demand for your training and education content and services.
Those who are eager to learn, willing to try something new, and execute with discipline. This is where you can shine turning novices into pros creating exceptional results.
Though it’s possible that you hit a dead end with some customers. If using your product requires the attention of a full-time role but it’s e.g. used by a founder wearing many hats the will may not be enough.
The biggest advantage in that segment is the low customer bias. That means you can move them in a certain direction following a specific methodology.
There’s also a lot of untapped growth potential in that segment. Consequently, it should receive the lion’s share of your time.
3. The Unmotivated
On the surface, it looks like a quick win. Provide these customers with directions and a few nice words here and there and they’ll be on their way to glory.
Don’t get me wrong, you should give it a try but you should do it with a limited approach. Why?
Because the reason for them not being motivated is likely not under your control.
If they are working for a company with a poor culture, where people just work for their paycheck, there's little you can do.
How can you find out what’s going on? I’m a big fan of the 5-Why framework.
If you are not familiar with it, it’s an analytics technique for uncovering the roots of a problem.
As the name implies, you are (roughly) asking why a problem exists 5 times while going deeper with every answer you get.
Why are customers unmotivated? Because they are not getting recognition for their work
Why are they not getting recognition for their work? Because no one cares at their company
Why does none care at their company? …
If it turns out that you can help them find their motivation - go for it. If not, limit the time you spend with those customers to a bare minimum.
4. Need to Exit
There’s nothing more toxic than working with poor-performing customers not willing to learn. They are wasting your time and making everyone miserable.
It does not matter whether we call them bad or bad-fit customers, they need to go.
A special subgroup is the incompetent know-it-alls. They are complaining night and day and blame you for their misfortune.
However, most people in this segment have neither bad intentions nor behavior. So there’s no reason to be rude but show them the exit in a polite way.
How can you do that? Gather all the information about the journey customers have behind them so far.
Create a “case study” that outlines why continuing to work together does not make sense.
Actual outcomes far below expected outcomes
Customers did not consume content or services
Product usage too low to create results
Try ending things with the customer on the best possible terms without any hard feelings. You may even provide them with a tip about alternatives that might be a better fit.
As with the Untrained, you should not give up on them lightly. Try to find out why they are not willing to learn and see if there’s a viable solution.
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