The importance of coordinating communication

Communication is critical in all facets of life. Project Management and Customer Success is no different. Communication keeps stakeholders informed, builds relationships, helps identify risk, surfaces and remediates frustration and highlights new business opportunities.

That being said, if it delivers little value or comes in high quantities, it can also result in frustration, even worse your audience could become desensitised to hearing from you leading to important messages being overlooked.

Communication Fatigue

Effective communication is a balance of need, want, method and frequency. What often isn’t taken into consideration is who or what else within your organisation is also communicating with your customers.

Take a typical SaaS. It would not be uncommon for a high value client to be getting communication from several different departments and systems all at the same time.

The importance of coordinating communication
  • Customer Success Manger – Heath check, Quarterly Business Review (QBR), Renewal conversations.
  • Sales/Account Manager – Following up on further opportunities or explaining new products or services.
  • CS/CRM Platforms – Automated emails for Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT) or Net Promoter Scores (NPS)
  • Marketing Platforms – Newsletter, emails…
  • Marketing – Asking for a case study, quote…
  • Support – Open support ticket updates.
  • Finance Platforms – Automated Invoice, statements.
  • SaaS Platform Notifications – Alerts, notifications…

How to avoid overwhelming customers with communications

The best way to avoid overwhelming customers is by having an accurate single source of truth. In an optimum scenario your customer 360 degree view, be that in your CRM or CS tool, should have a record of every correspondence from your company to your customers. It should also contain a schedule of any upcoming reviews or meetings by either CS, Sales or an Account Manager. This will enable you to plan your approach and potentially even how you approach your customer.

Whilst a single source of truth might tell you what communication has taken place, and what meetings are due to take place, it may not tell you everything that will be going to the customer in the near future. Particularly, it often doesn’t contain a record of upcoming marketing communications.

When it comes to marketing communication with your ‘active customers’, if your marketing team don’t already have a separate audience list for ‘active customers’, suggest to them that they do. This way the communication going to active customers can:

a) Be reduced as to not overwhelm them with the additional comms they will be getting.

b) Marketing for ‘active customers’ can be tailored to be more relevant.

Furthermore, if Marketing are looking to reach out to a customer for a quote, speak at an event, etc. If they can see that the client is an ‘active client’, they can engage with the CSM prior to directly reaching out to the client.

It is also a good idea to ask your customers. During your periodic meetings ask your customers about how they feel about the frequency of communications. Too much, too little, not relevant, wrong method. Explain that you want to be ensure they are kept informed but don’t want them to feel they are too much. Trust me, they will appreciate you asking.

Summary – The importance of coordinating communication

Each and every company is different. Consider who within your business is communicating with your customers. Can you easily find out when they did last, when they will next and what it was about? If not, consider what can be done to improve your single source of truth or to better understand when other teams are engaging.

Communication is one of the master key’s to success when used correctly.

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