Customer Success Interview with Amy Mustoe & Ross Garrett

By Mihika Railkar in Life at Cloud Elements Posted Jul 3, 2018

A lot of organizations build their company and their teams around customer success. We’re no different at Cloud Elements. In fact, we have one of our core values dedicated to Customers First. So I wanted to know, what does customer success really mean and how are we aligning to ensure our customers are successful, faster from the perspective of Amy Mustoe, our VP of Customer Success and Ross Garrett, our VP of Marketing.

Me: What is our focus on customer success?

How are we placing the highest priority on their needs throughout the customer lifecycle?

AMY: Here at Cloud Elements, our main value is that customers come first. Not only do we practice this but we want to show you how our ‘customers first’ value results in success for our company. We start focusing on and measuring our customers success, before they even become a customer. Our goal with our customers experience is that there is a smooth handoff from evaluation, to kickoff and delivery, to official launch and driving their customers’ adoption. As you can imagine, there’s measures of success in each phase of the journey.


Me: How do we create customer success?
Amy: Customer success is about making it easier for customers to buy our products. I believe that it’s mainly thinking about what’s in it for them not what’s in it for us. If your team isn’t thinking of the money and is instead focusing on what benefits the customer, it will ultimately bring your company success. amy-cutout
"If your team isn’t thinking of the money and is instead focusing on what benefits the customer, it will ultimately bring your company success." 
- Amy Mustoe, VP of Customer Success 
Me: What does adoption look like for our customers?

Amy: We can’t just stop at selling our products to them, and getting the integrations delivered. Unfortunately we don’t live in a time where you build it, and they will come. We need to make sure our customer’s customer is adopting the integrations. This comes down to supporting their providing advice on user experience, developing a product launch strategy, collaborating on go-to-market tactics and monitoring growth.

Me: What are some of the business drivers by integration?

Amy: By building integrations, your company will not only results in an increase of customer satisfaction but also increases the customer base, thus improving customer success. Often our customers are coming to us with a backlog of demands for integrations. By addressing those integration needs, driving customer adoption, they are more likely to recommend it to others and start to snowball your referral network. It’s pretty simple, if your app integrates to the apps your users expect it to, this will positively impact your customer success rate as well as your business’s presence. 

Me: How can we make it easier for potential customers to buy our products?

Ross: One of the ways we can make it easier for our customers to buy our products is to make sure we do everything we can at the beginning of the sales cycle to get collective mindshare. It’s important to keep an open relation between the product and implementation team, in order to provide the customers an easier sales process. If an open line of communication is kept between the two teams, we as a company, can make it easier for potential customers to buy our products. 

Another factor that could make it easier for customers to buy our products is ensuring a smooth transition between sales and the customer success team. This is important because at the beginning of the sales cycle the customer tells the sales rep their story and problem. If there is not an open line of communication between the two teams it will result in a rough transition for the customer, who will end up re-explaining his or her situation. By ensuring a seamless transition the customer only has to tell their issue once, enabling them to buy your product faster. ross-cutout

"One of the ways we can make it easier for our customers to buy our products is to make sure we do everything we can at the beginning of the sales cycle to get collective mindshare."
- Ross Garrett, VP of Marketing

Me: What are Reusable Shareables, and how will this help our customers be successful, faster?

Ross: A reusable shareable is something that we have built that has relevance across a bunch of use cases. So let’s take a virtual resource, for example, which is basically a construct or feature within the product that allows you to interact with the data you want from a variety of applications. In a simpler explanation, they are templates that contain reusable components to make it easier for our customer to be successful faster. Reusable shareables benefit the customer because they allow them to get to value and success as quickly as possible. By prioritizing customer success first, our focus is on the business drivers for our customers and what products can bring them positive results. In turn, we’ll take their success, as our success.  

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