24 Tips for a Winning Win / Loss Analysis

The fastest, surest way to nail your quarterly number is iterative testing and learning. Consider last quarter’s deal outcomes, for example. That’s fresh data just begging to be put to good use, and Win/Loss Analysis is the best way to do it. In this article, I offer 24 ways to ace your Win/Loss — so you increase conversion from first touch to close by learning from last quarter’s deal outcomes. “Someone’s sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.” ― Warren Buffett

Think Ahead

First, decide which deal type is the highest priority for Win/Loss analysis, how you’ll measure the improvement (eg win rate, or other metric) there, and which deal type is the next highest priority.
  1. Start at the end: Is your goal increased win rate overall, or in one high priority target market (eg enterprise buyers), or against a key competitor?
    buying timelines
    Sales satisfaction survey
    Midmarket triggers
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Why I Usually (Not Always) Prefer Customer Success to Report to the CEO

Ah, who should Customer Success report to?

It’s not super simple.

There are generally 3 options in the early and middle days:

  • CEO
  • VP of Sales (once you have one)
  • VP of Something Else. Finance sometimes. Product on occasion. Other “business” co-founder.

There are clear Pros and Cons to reporting to a VP of Sales. The Pros are:

  • Usually, a VP of Sales is your best manager. So usually, she can easily also manage Customer Success as well as all her reps.  You have too much to manage as it is.
  • Better alignment with VPS owning an ARR/MRR goal vs. just bookings goal. She’ll be better able to hit your ARR end-of-year goal if she’s also in charge of churn, and all upsell.  It’s always at least a little awkward to ask your VP of Sales to own the year-end ARR number, if she can’t also control churn.  They are Continue reading "Why I Usually (Not Always) Prefer Customer Success to Report to the CEO"

Twilio: The Inside Story with Jeff Lawson, CEO/Co Founder (Video + Transcript)

Most of us have heard of Twilio but we’re using it the platform a lot more than we realize. Thanks to Twilio, you’re able to do things like make a phone call within the Uber app to your driver, send messages and confirmations with Airbnb, receive alerts from Netflix and more. Jason sits down with Jeff Lawson, CEO and Co-founder of Twilio, to get the inside scoop about Twilio and how they’ve managed to become so successful. Jeff talks about why developers are the key to getting into new markets, the usefulness of billboards, balancing sales and engineering cultures and why focusing on a niche is bad advice. And if you haven’t heard: SaaStr Annual will be back in 2018, bigger and better than ever! Join 10,000 fellow founders, investors and execs for 3 days of unparalleled networking and epic learnings from SaaS legends like Jyoti BansalAaron Levie
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100 Customer Success Leaders Weigh in on the Most Important Metrics to Measure

For a SaaS organization of any size to be truly successful, there must be an overarching theme of customer-centric focus. This means departments across the organization are aware of how daily processes and procedures impact the overall customer experience. The best way SaaS executives can ensure everyone is on the same page? Keep track of critical customer success metrics that span ALL departments. Recently, ClientSuccess hosted the CS100 Summit, where 100 of the world’s top minds in customer success strategy and success gathered to discuss, inspire, and learn about customer success best practices. While at the conference, CS100 participants put their heads together to develop best practices around 4 main categories of customer success metrics that all SaaS leaders can measure and put to use at their own organizations. Below are the 4 main types of metrics and why SaaS leaders must pay special attention.

Monitoring the Lifeblood of
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3 Signs Your Startup Needs a Dedicated Customer Support Function

For a young company, the focus is typically on raising capital and acquiring customers. And for a while, that is absolutely the path to follow. However, as your company transitions to high-growth mode, you will need to develop the capability to effectively support your existing customers. Why? Well, intuitively, the idea of happy customers certainly sounds like a good one. But beyond the warm fuzzies, there’s plenty of hard data backing up the need to keep your customers satisfied through effective customer support. Consider these points: Acquiring customers is expensive, particularly versus retaining them. In fact, studies show that acquiring a customer costs 5 to 10x more than retaining one. Some studies place that multiple even higher – as high as 25% – in part because of differences in industries and business types. The most effective way to retain customers is to provide great customer support: an Accenture study
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The 10-Year (And Longer) Customer

Salesforce likes to talk about “Customers for Life”, and while that’s sort of catchy, it’s a little hard to grok what it really means. It finally sunk in for me a bit the other day.  At EchoSign, now Adobe Sign, there’s a large group of well-known customers that I closed, Back in The Day … that now have been customers for 10 years. (Man, that makes me feel old). We launched on January 1, 2006 on TechCrunch, and while we closed some good names that first year (Dell, BT, Qualcomm, GE, Comcast, etc.), it wasn’t until later on in 2007 that we had enough revenue to create a large enough group of customers to go on a 10 Year Journey with.  And the law of Power Laws and Large Numbers means that, obviously, Adobe has closed far more customers under its watch than I ever did.  The
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Lincoln Murphy Customer Success AMA Transcript and Video – May 19, 2017

On Friday May 19th, 2017, I did a Customer Success Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Facebook live. It was awesome. The video is embedded below, along with the questions that were asked and my answers. Yep, if you don’t want to watch or listen, no problem! I got the entire AMA transcribed (and cleaned it up a bit for readability, added links, etc.) and posted that below. I answered 13 questions in great detail. Follow me on Facebook so you can find out the next time I do one.

Table of Contents

Here’s the list of questions I covered in this AMA:
  1. Should Sales or Customer Success handle Upsells?
  2. How do we help our salespeople with Customer Segmentation?
  3. How to incorporate High/Low/No Touch into Onboarding?
  4. How do I target my customers when they’re not online?
  5. What if our customers don’t like technology?
  6. What’s the best way to define roles?
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