The 7 principles of Customer Success

Dave Jackson


Founder and CEO


Dave Jackson
Dave Jackson

Episode Summary

Today on the show we have Dave Jackson, founder, and CEO of The Customer.Co, and author of the book Customer-led growth. 

In this episode, we talked about customer success as a company-wide capability, the motivation behind his recent book Customer-led growth, and Dave explains why you should purposefully design your organization around customer value.

We also discussed why you should screw best practices, and dove into the 7 principles of customer success to deliver maximum customer value. 

Mentioned Resources



Customer success as a company-wide capability. 00:04:56
The motivation behind Dave’s recent book Customer-led growth. 00:06:36
Why you should purposefully design your organization around customer value. 00:09:17
Why you should screw best practices. 00:16:25
The 7 principles of customer success. 00:19:06


[00:01:24] Andrew Michael: Hey, Dave, welcome to the show. 

[00:01:27] Dave Jackson: That's the invitation, Andrew looking forward to the conversation.

[00:01:31] Andrew Michael: It's great to have you for the listeners. David is the founder and CEO of the customer code, which helps B2B

 SaaS companies profitably be win, satisfy, retain, and grow their chosen customers better than the competition prior to finding the he founded and led group customer feedback specialists, click tools, where he served as CEO for 15 years.

Founded in 2000 Clicktools was one of the UKs first true SaaS companies. And one of the first to recognize the importance of customer success appointing their first CSM in [00:02:00] 2005, he led the company through two transactions selling 49.9% survey monkey in 2010. And a hundred percent of cloud is cloud in 2014.

Here's the author of dynamic organizations and becoming dynamic, both published by Macmillan, and most recently customer led growth. My first question for you, Dave is like, how and why did you hire your first CSM back in 2000? 

[00:02:22] Dave Jackson: When we started Clicktools back in 2000, which by the way, it was before the term SaaS had been invented and there weren't many sources of information and advice about how to build a SaaS company.

We were very fortunate because we were Salesforce at first European software part. We were also a customer of theirs. We use that CRM product and we were supplied to them. They use this to do some of that personal feedback. So we got to know them quite well. And does the apocryphal story about about the offsite meeting when Benioff was saying, look how great we're growing.

[00:03:00] And there was a guy called an Irishman. I think it was David Dempsey said, this is great, but we're churning muscles. Effectively, I think they would change about eight to 12% per month. And you said, if we don't know anything about this, we'll go out of business because we're winning lots of customers.

Yeah. But we're losing lots of customers and Benioff then said, okay we're going to create this thing called customer success. And we've got to appoint customer success managers and build a team called customers for life. And because we're quite close to. Salesforce. We learned a lot from them.

They were the one pick one company you could turn to for advice and guidance. We did this. So I think they did it in something like April, 2005. And we filed a suit in October, 2005, because two things, really, one was it. Salesforce is doing, it's probably a good idea. And the second was customers as being very close to my heart for a long time.

I've always been a great believer in the importance of customers. So those two things came together and said, let's do the customer success. 

[00:03:58] Andrew Michael: This makes sense. Yeah, [00:04:00] for sure. I think definitely that's somebody who I'd love to have on the show is Mark Benioff. Haven't been able to reach him yet, but at some point we'd love to, because I think the origin, like so many other companies followed suits when it came to it and set a whole industry and a whole like segment.

With that moved back then. And you can see the importance and the value of it today. And I think more and more companies really realizing that not everyone was could see the future as well as you did, probably back then, but more and more teams and companies now are realizing how critical it is as a function.

You've obviously then been doing this for a long time as well. And you've seen markets evolve. Obviously you advise some really great companies in the process now is on, you've had the vantage points of seeing the starts and the birth of like customer success and seeing where it's gone to ingrown today.

What does let's say if you had to pick up one of the biggest differences between back then and today, and one of something that hasn't changed at all? 

[00:04:56] Dave Jackson: I think one of the biggest differences is that there is a [00:05:00] growing recognition that customer success is not just about what a customer success team does.

And so even before click tools, back in my days, I was involved in some research with a management development company back in 19 88, 89. And one of the phrases that we came up with then was applicable. So you stay in the context of customer success. It's about everything the organization does to profitably win, satisfy, retain, and grow its chosen customers better than competition, which is, and that phrase I continue to use.

And I think it's still valid and it does get across the shift from. See, I started in terms of churn prevention team to where it is now, which is actually not a team at all the best companies that do it really recognize it as a company-wide capability. So that's the biggest difference.

I think that I'm seeing in terms of the similarity. You can go precess and some of the fundamentals of have never changed. I think back [00:06:00] in the sixties and seventies, Peter Drucker, they all, the original management guru said the purpose of a company is to win and keep a customer. He also said, by the way that the customer rarely buys what supplier thinks it's selling.

So some things haven't changed. Some things already turned in that sense, how we apply those ideas and concepts I think is changing and will continue to change. 

[00:06:25] Andrew Michael: Yeah, for sure. And I think as well, like the, I could say this is one of the biggest differences that you do see your highlights and being that team responsible for churn has evolved to like really focusing on the success.

And I really liked the point that you make as well, that this is like a company. Job. It's not a team's job. And we were just chatting a little bit about this in the beginning. And obviously I think this comes into like the new book customer led growth. Maybe you want to tell us a little bit about the motivation, what it's about like a short synopsis.

[00:06:55] Dave Jackson: Yeah. So in terms of. What the book's about the subtitle to the book is a CEO's [00:07:00] guide to building a B2B SaaS company. And that, is my focus. I only work in the B2B SaaS space. Why? I think it's an area where I've got a little bit of knowledge and capability. It's also an area which I find extremely fascinating.

And this. Take your own medicine, I think be true to your chosen customers. My chosen customer is a B2B SaaS company. My ideal customer profile is certain types of B2B SaaS companies. And why did I write it? I wrote it because over time I've got these ideas about some of the things that I've done including , some of the things I've done wrong in growing click tools.

And, but also I think. I was seeing so much around customer success, which was focusing on the role of the CSM and the role of the customer success team. And I just thought it's much more than that. And I think people recognize that now, but spending that intent and that philosophy into [00:08:00] reality is something that I spent the last 20 years thinking about and doing.

So I needed to get these ideas, all of which were there quite often at the back of the head, but I needed to bring them in a way that I could structure them and explain them hopefully in a reasonably clear way. So that's why I wrote the book because I needed to think about it 

[00:08:21] Andrew Michael: for sure. It's still as well.

I think we previously discussed this on an episode recently where we talked about like title, customer success for the specific job function. And does it like, does it make sense? And V there's arguments on both sides, but the ultimately surely that's what you're there to do as a company.

And you mentioned like Peter Drucker's act to keep and retain customers like to keep them happy. That is the function. That's why the business exists. And then to call a team by this name as well. For me, I see the argument in the sod that yes, you need to give it to the team to make sure that [00:09:00] the whole company is working together towards X success and bringing the alignment together and so forth.

But at the other end, it's like also sets maybe false expectations when the education is not there in the organization, then ethically our understanding of like why this team exists and what they're there to do. And we actually had this, I think like at Hotjar and David, the CEO was like a huge advocate for not having a growth team, like calling the team growth because as soon as you call a team growth team, then like what expectations does that set on rest of the organization?

Nobody needs to worry about growth and it's just, we leave it up to that team. And I think the same thing applies with customer success. And this is like a really good education in that the company. And I'm keen to hear Your thoughts on this and the actual, like naming of the role and of the function and playing into, like what you're saying about being the job in the role of the company.

[00:09:48] Dave Jackson: I think there are two things. One is I see on different forums, LinkedIn and others, there's all, there's lots and lots of debate about the difference between customer service and [00:10:00] customer success and customer support and customer experience. I think quite frankly, those debates annoy me 'cause they meaningless customers.

Don't give a Tufts what you call it, just figuring out what it means to your customers and deliver it. And then if you want to do, and I say this in the book called it Fred, cause it really doesn't money if you've got it right. It doesn't matter what you call it. , what you'll find is most of the people that call it customer success are in the customer success business.

There's somebody. Now, if all I've got is a hammer, everything looks like a nail and it's that sort of syndrome. The other thing is there's so much go back to my chosen customers, B2B SaaS companies. The only thing that a B2B SaaS company does once it's figured out what problem it's solving for and who it's solving it for, then it figures out what value means to those people.

People , not just companies and then all it does is it markets that [00:11:00] value, it sells that value. The product should deliver that value and anybody else should enable that value. So it's like the red thread that runs right through the company. So it becomes the basis for me upon which, and which is why the book's written for CEOs is it's how you purposefully designed the organization to around that red thread around that value to.

Is that is the outcome of that successful customers? Yes. I hope it is. But specifically successful individuals all within within one company. 

[00:11:35] Andrew Michael: Let's unpack that a little bit then. So new CEO getting started building the company, I'm starting to wanting to think of how to structure things like.

How do you go about it in this context? And how do you tie the thread together and structure your company in a way that builds your customers up for success in your team? 

[00:11:55] Dave Jackson: Okay. So the first thing is structure's not the first thing you look at [00:12:00] when it detect, thinks about the building. It was an American architect at the end of the 18 hundreds wrote a paper in it that somebody basically was form follows function.

What it looks like follows what it's got to do. So what a good architect does is figure out what's the purpose of the building? Who is it? And how's it going to work. And I think we need to take that lesson into how we think about organization design. Let's forget about structure for the time being let's figure out what our purposes, what our vision is, what our values are, what customers are we serving.

And as I say, it's people not just individuals and how are we going to deliver that to them. And once we figured that out, then we can think about what sort of teams do we need, but we jumped into the structure piece. Without thinking about what we're actually trying to do in the first place. Was it great saying that it was paraphrase it and it says we were falling into teams and we were [00:13:00] beginning to perform well, then we will be reorganized.

I would to learn later in life that this is a wonderful device. I changing structure, but creating the illusion of progress whilst actually creating demoralization and inefficient. And that saying goes back to a Roman Senator over two and a half thousand years ago. And I still think we have learned, it's not about changing the structure of the time changing structure.

Doesn't change how things get done. Usually you've got to focus on what you are doing, who you are doing it for, and what's the best way to do it. And that to me is organization design. The lines on the boxes come later on. Yes, they do. But later on, and I think we, we get asked about face when we think about the structure and then figure things out from there.

[00:13:52] Andrew Michael: Yeah. I like that analogy of the architect looking at the building and what is it like it's the jobs to be done? What our [00:14:00] customers need to get done and then thinking about what teams and structure we need in place. Cause I think very often, we automatically gravitate towards like the typical sales, marketing, engineering product and these teams.

And I think from my perspective, like when you're building a company, the product that you're building is the company itself. It's not just like the individual piece of software or the end product and essentially every step of this as part of the user journey and treating it as such I've seen it in different companies where the product team or the engineering team, or like the gods of the company. And that's the most important thing. And that's what we focus on Newark retreats. And I think Having the monster, that's like a very internal mindset and it's not really focused on like the customer's value in their end points.

And if we treat it as a whole, like they're coming to us for a specific product or service, like if anything, maybe the interaction that human touch that they have with support is probably the most important interaction, because it can really differentiate you from the competition. Definitely find it.

Interesting and great [00:15:00] point you make as well, not starting with structure first, like really thinking about, okay, what are customers you have to achieve? 

[00:15:05] Dave Jackson: Just people about, great companies. Quite often they'll describe things like values, vision, collaboration, cooperation, and challenge innovation.

I don't think you ever find any of those things in an organization show. They are the things I think, differentiate a good from a great company, but we get hung up because why did we get hung up, but organization shouts. And that's because, if you go back to the history of organizations, the whole concept of management started when we moved out to the fields into factories, it's a very different thing.

And what it is now organizing physical work as against organizing knowledge work completely different concepts, but we still rely on the same ideals, the same principles when we come to organization design. 

[00:15:57] Andrew Michael: Yeah, it's that sort of thing. Like when you have an [00:16:00] invention bias or countering the exact bias, but it's like, when something's been done, you just accept it for granted.

And then it just becomes the norm and not challenged. And like this happens, it isn't in everything, our lives, it's probably like better ways to do most things. It's just once you get something that works sufficiently well for you and nobody bothers to sit and challenge them. And sometimes I can think it is important to.

I can take a step back just to rethink these concepts quite a bit. Yeah. 

[00:16:25] Dave Jackson: I did a presentation for one of the universities in the us. And the subtitle was notes from a CS heretic. And I think too often, we, and actually, the customer success community is very good at sharing ideas. It's less good at questioning some of those ideas.

Some people do well, others don't. And I think if I've done anything in my. It is, I've always asked the question, why do we do that? And if the answer comes back we need to do it because quite often the answer is we don't need to do it, but that's because that's what everyone else does. Then my second question is why do we do it that way?

And I don't think we go back [00:17:00] to first principle thinking often enough, if you look at the people that have changed the world, first principles thinking, what are we fundamentally, what are we trying to achieve here and there? And what's the best way. Forgetting quite often, what's been done in the past 

[00:17:15] Andrew Michael: first round and in more sides and like the customer success space, because it is so new and relatively speaking to anything else, any other practice that like probably the best practices have not been discovered or defined yet, or the best ways of doing things.

And there is just so much of this opportunity to shape and define what this means for your company and for your customers. 

[00:17:38] Dave Jackson: Yes, I have got this belief that, that common practice is really the best practice 

[00:17:43] Andrew Michael: it's really? Yeah. Okay. Yeah. We used to, I think it Hutch as well, it was something like screw best practices is like the ideology and it's something as well.

Like I mentioned to you before the show is that when it comes to churn and retention, There's very rarely a place where you can apply a best practice. That's going to meet and suit your business. Cause [00:18:00] it just, the inputs vary. So drastically, depending on the company, the segment customers you're going after.

Yeah I'm a believer of this, 

[00:18:07] Dave Jackson: but by all means, look at what other people are doing and understand why they're doing it, but also understand the context in which they are doing it. Yeah. As I said, I'm all in. If I remember topic. It was it was one of the gurus several years ago, probably still is.

And he talked about learning from the people. He called it creative swiping. Don't look at their ideas, take the best ones, but don't just take them as they are, because they work in that company because of everything else in that company, sit and say, how does this apply to us? Maybe it doesn't the tool, but if it does, yeah, but we need to tweak this.

[00:18:45] Andrew Michael: Yeah, I think that's a key thing is obviously you want to be learning from those around, you can learn a lot from people's mistakes and things that they're doing well, but just really like making things, your own understanding how it can be a flick on your business. I think it's just so Picasso was a good artists, borrow great artists steal [00:19:00] thing, just to innovate and work around.

I could sit around the, but just not taking things for granted. Yeah. Customer led growth then in this mindset, like what are some of the key things companies need to be doing right? To really serve their customers and set them up for success? 

[00:19:16] Dave Jackson: The bulk of the book, Andrew is built around seven principles.

The first one is that CS is a financial strategy. Recognize the impact that good. Delivering value to customers has on the value of your organization. So understand unit costs and unit economics understand the impact on valuation, understand how that's measured. , don't just look at your makers, but look at how the customers and the individual and your customers think about value in their context.

The second is what we've talked about now. The second principle is success by design. I think one of the things that a lot of people may say CEO's included is that one of the chief [00:20:00] tasks of a CEO is organized chief organization designer. And I think we've got to get back to this concept of what I call purposeful organization design.

There's a great saying that says all organizations are perfectly designed to achieve the results they get.

Yeah. And if we want to change the results we get, we've got to think about changing the way that our organization works. And again, this is not about lines and boxes. It's about vision and values. It's about ideal customer profiles. It's about understanding the customer from the outside in it's about understanding their value.

It's about the metrics that you've put in place to reward and and measure performance. The third is third principles. It's not about customer. 'cause so success is not about customers. That sounds up doesn't it. It's about people. Quite often, we hide behind this faceless thing called the customer.

And actually when you unpack it, the only time you ever see the customer is the name on an older form and the name on a check, [00:21:00] everything else is down to individually. No, so there's a buy it. Yes. But what they need out of it and what you know. So for example, if you're selling some marketing solution CMO wants from it.

What kind of digital marketing wants from it? What a brand manager wants from it, what a marketing executive wants from your products and services completely different. And to think that we can deliver value to a customer without thinking about what value means to those individuals and how are we going to make them succeed?

I think is a big mistake that we started to get heads round. And th that builds on the fourth principle, which is you have to have a beep deep understanding of what volume means. So we've talked about jobs to be done. Yeah, what's there. What work do they have to achieve? And again, individuals how are they measured?

What are their challenges? What's going to make them successful. And how do we bring that together in a way. That's the same sort of content and thread. [00:22:00] So here's the red thread right across the organization. Because what I can't afford to do is have marketing, selling, marketing one value, sales, selling a different value product, delivering a different value and customer success and professional services, enabling something else.

It has to be the same understanding of value, but the fifth principle is actually when you get this right, delivering value is selling. Success is something I always talk about this double helix, like DNA and the first sort of that is delivering value. And the more and more you do of that, the more bugs you throw off, which is generating money.

So it won't bummed might be about retention. Another bond might be about re retention. Another ball might be about retention, but another one says, right? So you can only achieve this value, which is important to you by buying something additional. That's an upsell and expansion opportunity. Oh, by the way, delivering this value means I'm going to advocate for you.

That's secondary revenue. So if you get the value piece [00:23:00] right, and deliver success in the terms of the individuals, it is about selling specific sensibilities. It's about their choice, not yours. I find a lot of people at SaaS companies make the belief that says here's the customer journey.

We're going to take you through this stage and then this stage, and then this stage, and then this stage, and actually. This was about their own journey. Individuals have got their own journey. I think Mike Tyson put his best when he said any plant, any box in plant comes to hits the wall when, the cycle, the first big punch.

We try, we were doing it for the right reasons, but we're imposing our view of what their journey should be. And that means, I think we've got to step back from that and say actually, I've got to figure out Andrew, what's your context? What data have I got? What information, what conversations have I got that said, this is your context.

Oh, by the way, Michael, here's a few choices you could do this. You could do that. You could do that. I think this is the best one for. You might want to choose something different. So we scrapped [00:24:00] you and is effectively other than, just building an understanding of what it looks like at the highest level and say what's the next piece of value I can deliver to Andrew.

Once you've got that one, maybe you do the same thing again, but a higher level, maybe you do something different. Maybe you do two or three things. So we actually unpack this idea of, a single ROI measure, a single outcome and say, no, I'm just gonna iterate constantly iterate on delivering. And the way that Andrew understands it, he'll recognize.

And then the final principle is code scales better than people. We started SaaS companies and, we stopped a B2B SaaS company on a go button. That is my target market is a product company on staggered. How quite often we've not thought about how will you use the product to deliver.

The volume process. If I ask him this question on LinkedIn, once if I was delivered, if I had the product [00:25:00] and it was delivering measurable value to the individuals that I serve in a way that they were very happy with. So I'd go high value delivery, high customer satisfaction, and good repeat and expunction revenue.

And I didn't have one CSN. I'm not good at customer success.

Possibly, but again, common practice says what did you create a team of CSMs? And they deliver this value to day. Maybe what if we don't? And if, I think if you look at a lot of the newer companies, newer SaaS companies are coming up, they're starting, it's much, much more about what's in the product.

Do you have people? Absolutely. But I think the world is shifting to self-service much more rapidly than a lot of people realize. Every time there's been a new self service option in history. People have said, oh, that won't work. By the way, the people that work a typical, the people that are employed in that field when ATM's came [00:26:00] along, bank teller says, oh, people won't stand outside and get their money.

They'll come into the bank and sell it to me. No, you don't. My self service shopping came along. People said, they're not going to queue. They'll come to me. And I'll get them everything they need. Know, if I, even now we won't queue to deal with a teller, we'll go to the self-serve, cell skin stuff.

So everybody's, every time there's been a good, by the way, the emphasis is on a good self service option that tends to be come the chosen. Correct. 

[00:26:31] Andrew Michael: I think good is key there because I think it also really depends on the case. Like for you gave yourself self checkout. If I have 10 items, I'm going to do it.

But if I have a hundred in my basket, like I'm going to go to the counter and add the items there. I think it's just like how it goes. Specifically I think it's the size of businesses make difference, but a hundred percent agree like automation is the way forward and things are definitely moving.

More and more rapidly in this direction. And I think the other thing is, was like support itself, the best type of support or the best type [00:27:00] of documentation is a product that works well that nobody needs to contact you for. And the same thing applies and success is that if you can use your product to make your customers extremely successful without needing them to contact your thing, like that's the holy grail, like you've, that is a definition of a great product and a great user experience and well thought out.

It's not easy to do that. Like it's incredibly difficult 

[00:27:20] Dave Jackson: was a great book written it's called the best service is no service. And it's based on the work that some consultants did. And it's an approach that use excludes extensively by Amazon, which has got some great customer satisfaction ratings, not perfect every time.

It also is the company that's got. I think its mission or vision is to be the world's most customer focused. And all they're doing all the time. He's looking at white people, contact them and saying, if we could build a product in a way that they didn't need to contact us in a way that delivers what they want.

I think Jeff biggest and record is saying the last Pete does think people want to do is call the call center. [00:28:00] That's why their products are so good. And I think that's a mentality that we can bring into, SaaS businesses. 

[00:28:08] Andrew Michael: And this one's important. 

[00:28:11] Dave Jackson: There are cases where even the very best self-service will fall down and you have to have a very good rapid backup.

So to me, self-service is not, self-service only, it's the primary mechanism. It's the first mechanism. If it doesn't work for any reason, or if you've got customers that just. W, just can't use that. Then you've got to do one of two things. You've either said actually I don't want to sell to you or you say no, I've got a good option for you.

[00:28:45] Andrew Michael: Yeah.

Looking out for success. And if the success not made by one means being there for the other means. But I think like this whole premise of the discussions, while we've had knowledge, that really comes [00:29:00] back to value. And I think this is like when it comes to gender retention, it's like always just. Making sure you understand your customers deeply.

You understand the value they're trying to extract. And as long as you're delivering on that value, like everything else falls into place for you. 

[00:29:15] Dave Jackson: The one thing that most customer success teams don't measure customer success. I see that most of the measures that we say about customer success, our companies.

So you've got to be able to say, how do you measure customer success? It say NRR, DRR logo, chin, motor school. None of those are mentioned customer success. That all measures I was sentenced. 

[00:29:42] Andrew Michael: I'm trying to, which are the outputs and the lagging metrics. That's, don't allow you to understand what's happening in.


[00:29:49] Dave Jackson: they bolted. Absolutely. They are. Would I measure them every day? When the business gets to a certain scale, but what I say, they're measures of customer success now. 

[00:29:58] Andrew Michael: It's interesting that you're [00:30:00] talking about this actually, because we had a re talking about Amazon as a whole, like I recently interviewed, Harini who's the chief customer officer for AWS and.

They actually measure their customer's success. So like they try to understand the care, like what value do they give their customers and what customers do? What do they. Th what is the value that their customers give to their customers? And they're trying to see like how their role in that place.

So if you're a gaming company, whatever it is that gets the speed to deliver the product to the end customer. And then they work with their customers to try and. Their game on that end, it's, they've really taken it like a step further in the chain. It's not just my responsibility to make my customer, but I want to make their customers happy as well in the process, anything they can do to do that, I found it was really interesting discussion around the topic.

[00:30:49] Dave Jackson: And I mentioned that research that was involved with bucking 1889. One of the things in there was understanding your customer's customer. But I think at the moment, Andrew, I'd be quite happy if we just [00:31:00] started to understand and measure our own customers directly and we can then make a move on to the next day.

But, with Amazon, we talking about. 

[00:31:09] Andrew Michael: Sophistication on the next level, the way they've 

[00:31:13] Dave Jackson: got the money, because of the focus that they've put on customers. It's not that they're focused on customers. Therefore, they've got the money. So it's not that they've focused on customers because they've got the money.

They've got the money because they focused on customers. 

[00:31:27] Andrew Michael: Cool. See, we're running up on time. I want to say a question. I ask every guest, let's imagine a hypothetical scenario you joined in your company. Turner retention is not doing great at this company. And the CEO comes to you and says, Hey, Dave, like we needed to turn things around fast.

We have 90 days to try and make an impact on our turn and you're in charge. And I want you to help us sort this out. The catches though, you're not going to give the traditional, like I'm going to go speak to customers, understand their pain points, and then start from there. You're just going [00:32:00] to choose a tactic something that you've seen work effectively in the past that helped reduce churn quickly.

What would be the one activity you would want to run at this company?

[00:32:09] Dave Jackson: Will you exclude it? The one that I would go for first, always. I think I would look at the radios cannot be the next six months. And who are the people that we're dealing with there and look at how we could focus on maybe two or three individuals in each of those and say what do we need to do to get you to renew within the next six months?

And I wouldn't, it will be Andrew, what do you need to see for you to say, I need to renew this product and it would be the same question of your colleagues and I get different answers and I'd focus on delivering on those. 

[00:32:47] Andrew Michael: Nice. So Sam you took the sneaky way around and just focusing on that coming 

[00:32:55] Dave Jackson: well, I'm going to make a difference because I'm focusing on revenue that's available [00:33:00] in that time.


[00:33:02] Andrew Michael: reminds me of 

[00:33:03] Dave Jackson: Ohio, which is understanding and trying to deliver value for the individuals 

[00:33:08] Andrew Michael: reminds me of an interesting chat. We also had on the show previously as well. This concept. I learnt it from a Hotjar again, but like interview and the right timing and asking the right questions at the right time.

And the practices is actually about your website. So like asking a question on your site about Okay, asking for feedback too early. So if you're asking on the website about something about what's stopping you from converting or whatever is you're going to get information from the wrong types of people.

There's always going to be browsers. We're never going to be interested in your products. And if you taking feedback from that percentage, you send false signals. But asking a question like from somebody post-purchase what nearly made you not purchase today. That way, you're still getting those people who may be browsing and managed to be convinced by something this on the side, but we're a little bit skeptical.

You're going to get those that are going to be customers anyway. And that feedback is going to be much more directional, but like I, on this conversation, we [00:34:00] talked about maybe applying this in the context of customer success and a churn and retention because far off, they're not like we all have these churn exit surveys where we send out to our customers and say, but what if it was just like focused or customers that just renewed with a question of what nearly stopped you from your noon?

And then that's where you're getting people that have renewed their product, but also like they're more willing to give that feedback because there might be things that are underlying and they're not happy with, but I found it interesting concepts, 

[00:34:26] Dave Jackson: I've in working with companies always advise in terms of anybody that's talking to a customer.

Within reason because you don't want to swamp them, but the question, yeah, I think you should always ask is on a scale of zero to 10, how likely are you to renew and based on their answer, why did you give that school? It's the net promoter, but apply that because that gets you to one is, is this a risk?

The second it says, what do I need to do to avert that risk? I don't think that's a question that. [00:35:00] The CSM should ask the product, should people should ask that salespeople in a way should ask, but marketing should ask the time was he focuses on, providing a tiny buck to the role rather than just the company you start to build in the Sunday.

What value means to that one? 

[00:35:17] Andrew Michael: Yep. I associated as having some flaws in the same concepts as well in the sense that there might not be the best fit a role for the product or for the service, and then taking that feedback. But people that have just gone through that moment with the actually renewed the product you possibly getting like the best advice on how to keep others that are maybe on the fence like them.

Yeah, but yeah. So last question then for today, What is one thing that you know about general detention today that you wish you knew when you got started with your career?

[00:35:46] Dave Jackson: The role of product? I think that's the thing that through

challenge it actually cost me a lot of money. So I think, I think a recognition of [00:36:00] product building the value of process into the product. It's something I wish I had known 20 years ago. Yeah. And it costs me because when we sell 49.9% to survey monkey, the chief exec then said, listen, Dave, we were not getting, we agreed to do a deal.

And we were all getting about multiples. And now it's saying look at all this, this says, we should, you should be giving us this multiple and they'd go back, bless his soul. He died turned around and said, yeah, but you've got these two things on your plate. On your, particularly on your on your coastlines, one is support and one is success.

You need both, they're both important, but I think the bigger than they should be. And the reason I said that was, if you look at what survey monkey did back in 89 is to build yourself up from the ground up from being it's all about the product and that push the multiple down. So it cost me.

[00:36:56] Andrew Michael: Interesting. And you felt the pain. [00:37:00] Yeah. But, yeah, I'm pretty sure we did the deal. So it must've been a good deal. I was going to say, yeah, for sure. David, it's been a pleasure. I seem to have really enjoyed this conversation and I'm sure the listeners are going to get a lot of value out of it.

And thank you so much. Obviously we'll make sure we have notes and links to the the books. So if anybody's interested in picking one up check out our show notes, but thanks so much, Dave is any sort of final thoughts you want to leave the listeners with before we. 

[00:37:29] Dave Jackson: No, I think just focus on people, not just customers.

[00:37:35] Andrew Michael: Yeah. It's not a numbers game. It's people's skin. Yeah. It is a numbers 

[00:37:40] Dave Jackson: game. The people, your colleagues, if you get the people piece, right? Lots of other things, we'll usually.

[00:37:51] Andrew Michael: Great. That sounds like it was the bell. So I spent my hospital it's time. I've put today. Thanks so much. Dave, and we should just be like now going forward 

[00:37:59] Dave Jackson: [00:38:00] Really appreciate it.


Dave Jackson
Dave Jackson

The show

My name is Andrew Michael and I started CHURN.FM, as I was tired of hearing stories about some magical silver bullet that solved churn for company X.

In this podcast, you will hear from founders and subscription economy pros working in product, marketing, customer success, support, and operations roles across different stages of company growth, who are taking a systematic approach to increase retention and engagement within their organizations.


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