You’re reading an excerpt of Founding Sales: The Early-Stage Go-To-Market Handbook, a book by Pete Kazanjy. The most in-depth, tactical handbook ever written for early-stage B2B sales, it distills early sales first principles and teaches the skills required, from being a founder selling to being an early salesperson and a sales leader. Purchase the book to support the author and the ad-free Holloway reading experience. You get instant digital access, commentary and future updates, and a high-quality PDF download.

Above all else, customer success is about fulfilling the promises that were made during the sales process. The customer handed you money in exchange for a promise of value, and now you’re going to deliver that value.

What does that value look like? Conveniently, it’s documented in your sales narrative. Those KPIs (key performance indicators) that you said you were going to raise or lower for the customer? That’s customer success. So if we were TalentBin, this would be all about driving more engineering talent into the top of the customer’s hiring funnel. And if we were Textio, it would be about optimizing job postings such that more applicants would apply per post and posts would attract more diverse applicants. Customer success is about delivering on your ROI promises, and doing so for each of the involved stakeholders. Was there a certain set of value propositions for the manager, but others for the individual? Well, you’re going to want to check both of those boxes, and make both of those customers successful.

You methodically, and in a stepwise fashion, engage with prospects and drive them down the sales pipeline toward being a customer. Now, the same approach will ensure that you deliver the success you promised those customers and find yourself on the happier versions of those revenue graphs above. It’s methodical, in that it will be rigorous the same way your discovery, presentation, demo, and pipeline management was, and stepwise, in that it’s not a question of getting a customer implemented, handing them the keys, and forgetting about them. Rather, after implementation, customer success turns to cadenced check-ins, instrumentation of success markers, and documentation of ROI achieved, all aimed at supporting an airtight case for renewal at the end of the contract.

If you found this post worthwhile, please share!