Gainsight recently hosted Pulse, a conference on customer success management best practices for recurring revenue businesses. While we expected a “meet-up” of 50 attendees, we ended up selling out the venue with 300+ “Pulse”-ers. Although I’d love to claim that my keynote entrance (running onstage to hip-hop music, in a football helmet, while doing the Heisman) was what attracted people, I know it was far more than that.
We are at the beginning of a massive transition. In the old economy, where companies got paid up front for their products, “customer success” was a good cocktail party line for CEOs. In this new economy, with pay-per-month, pay-per-use or pay-per-Bitcoin, customer success is a fundamental part of the CEO’s bottom line. If customers don’t get value from your products or services, they now have the freedom to leave. And if they leave, your business doesn’t make money.
In one of the most fascinating sessions at Pulse, I was joined by CEOs Chris Cabrera from Xactly, Aaron Levie from Box and Tien Tzuo from Zuora. Everything they said reinforces my passion for customer success. As you dive into the session, I’ll leave you with my description of a customer success manager, in the form of a haiku:
She sleeps eats rarely
World on her shoulders always
Cleaning up for sales
(Editor’s note: Nick Mehta is the CEO of Gainsight, the leading customer success management solution used by companies like Marketo, Jive Software and Informatica. Follow him on Twitter @nrmehta and the company at @GainsightHQ.)