New Tools for CS

Customer Success as a discipline arrived in 2015, but in reality, entrepreneurs have been scaling the heights of success through an obsessive and relentless focus on their customers for many years. Their methods are different – some focus on their employees first, while others focus on customer value – but all roads eventually lead to their customers, and through them, to outstanding business success.

Here is a list comprising the stories of seven pioneers who have much to share from their experiences, including new approaches and best practices. We think you will find them as interesting and insightful as we did. Enjoy!

1. Chief Customer Officer 2.0: How to Build Your Customer-Driven Growth Engine

For the past 20 years, Jeanne Bliss has been the pioneer of the Chief Customer Officer position at companies like Lands’ End, Allstate, Coldwell Banker, Mazda and Microsoft. Chief Customer Officer 2.0 follows up her previous publication, Chief Customer Officer, and takes years off your learning curve by detailing Jeanne’s five-competency model she uses to coach the C-Suite and Chief Customer Officers.

This impressive book will get you into action quickly with a united leadership team, and shift your business intent to earning growth by improving customers’ lives. Operating from the frontlines of customer experience management, Bliss provides practical guidance on how to embed the five competencies into your company’s processes by changing how you develop products, go to market, enable and reward people, and conduct annual planning. Practical and incisive, Jeanne nails customer experience like no one else.

2. Effective Customer Success Execution: A Customer Centric Approach to Creating a Customer for Life

Jackie Golden takes us through the intersection of customer experience (CX) and customer success (CS), showing us the overlaps and how we can use CX to get us to CS. As an executive with 30 years’ corporate experience and 20 years in high tech, Jackie Golden has helped dozens of companies develop a successful customer experience model. Golden has worked for companies like Hyperion, Cognos, Ascential, IBM, and Workfront and optimized her model over time to increase the number of customer fans, which ups sales quotas and puts her companies far in the black.

As you scale a software company, the desire to do the right thing for the customer isn’t enough. The company must come together to develop a customer lifecycle that allows all departments to works cohesively on keeping customers for life. If your customers love you, and tell their friends, you create a positive feedback loop that keeps giving. Golden acknowledges it’s not an easy task, but with this book, you’ll be up for the task.

3. Traction: How Any Startup Can Achieve Explosive Customer Growth

Gabriel Weinberg and Justin Mares have learned from experience that most startups don’t fail because they can’t build a product; most startups fail because they can’t get traction. In this book, you’ll learn the nineteen channels you can use to build a customer base, and how to pick the right ones for your business. Traction draws on interviews with more than forty successful founders, including Jimmy Wales (Wikipedia), Alexis Ohanian (Reddit), Paul English (Kayak), and Dharmesh Shah (HubSpot) to provide you with the relevant guidance.

Weinberg and Mares know that there’s no one-size-fits-all solution; every startup faces unique challenges and will benefit from a blend of these nineteen traction channels. Their three-step framework (called Bullseye) helps you figure out which ones will work best for your business, and make the process of growing your business far less daunting. Talk is cheap, but traction is hard evidence that you’re on the right path. With this book, you can be sure you’ll be guided in the right direction.

4. The Effortless Experience: Conquering the New Battleground for Customer Loyalty

Everyone knows that the best way to create customer loyalty is with service so good, so over the top, that it surprises and delights. But what if everyone is wrong? The Effortless Experience takes readers deep inside the customer experience to reveal what really makes customers loyal – and disloyal. The authors lay out the four key pillars of a low-effort customer experience, and detail profiles of companies that are already using their techniques with great results.

There are tools and templates you can start applying right away to improve service, reduce costs, decrease customer churn, and generate the elusive loyalty that the “dazzle factor” fails to deliver. Loyalty is driven by how well a company delivers on its basic promises and solves day-to-day problems, not on how spectacular its service experience might be. Most customers don’t want to be “wowed”; they want an effortless experience. By avoiding the “dazzle factor” and instead focusing on service, Customer Success is easily within grasp.

5. Customer Experience 3.0: High-Profit Strategies in the Age of Techno Service

With social data developments and tech advances in analytics, businesses have more opportunities to enhance the customer experience than ever before. Not only that, customers now expect more! As a result, great companies are the ones that provide seamless experiences, by knowing what customers want before they know it themselves. This groundbreaking guide reveals how to delight customers, using the best tools available.

Customer Experience 3.0 provides first hand expertise on what works and what doesn’t, highlighting the revenue and word-of-mouth payoffs when you get it right. This book contains an innovative customer experience framework and step-by-step roadmap, showing readers how to design and deliver flawless services and products while setting honest customer expectations. If you want to get technical, and dive deep, this is the CX book for you.

6. BrainScripts for Sales Success: 21 Hidden Principles of Consumer Psychology for Winning New Customers

In BrainScripts, Drew Eric Whitman tells the story of why some salespeople can close deals as easily as shutting a door, and why others struggle to get even one person to call them back. He takes you on a fascinating tour inside your sales prospects’ minds, teaching you 21 powerful techniques of consumer psychology that really work. Dozens of real-life scripts show you exactly how to incorporate them into your own sales presentations, ranging from practical persuasion techniques, to using ethics, fear, IDs, believability, awareness and much more to crush the competition.

With this book, sales become easy. If you understand your prospects’ psychology, and know how to reach them, your job will become a piece of cake. You’ll learn what common mistakes to avoid, what you should never and always do during presentations, and how to build a river of desire for your product. The sales secret is consumer psychology, and with Whitman’s book, you’ve got a secret weapon to smoke your adversaries.

What do you think of our picks? Are we missing any of your favorites? Leave a comment below and let us know what you think!