I would divide customer success management (CSM) into the following three essential phases:
This is the phase of the life cycle where the CSM reaches out to the client and sets expectations.
It is important to keep the client engaged in the beginning as studies have shown that if we do not engage in the first three months, then there is a 10% chance that it will ever start to engage, which is the same with loyalty. Engagement and trust are key.
The customer is up and running at this point. (Hopefully)
Depending on the client and also on his will, I suggest a bi-weekly call, so we can keep up-to-date. It also allows me to confirm that the developers are working well and making the client happy.
This call may also happen with the developers to understand how happy they are, but it is important not to keep them stuck with calls as well.
Maintaining a channel for direct messages is also important, such as Slack. Who knows what might come up suddenly? Also, makes talks lighter, more friendly as well - Is there something wrong with our services? Is a developer not performing as he should? Is it getting more costly for the client ? Is it getting less productive? These are the issues we must solve by managing the relationship between the client – developers – developers’ team lead.
This is the phase where the customers will be most of the time.
They have the knowledge of how the developers work and what they can bring, and they are on “automatic pilot” with the work of our services.
It is important to monitor your clients’ health and pay attention to red flags, so we can communicate to the team that something might change soon. This accelerates the process of renewing or modifying certain situations.
If we can predict and manage them with the team, then we can be sure that the relationship shall last longer than expected, which, in turn, will lead to success!