3 Areas Where Catalyst Helps CSMs Save A Bunch of Time
Catalyst helps CSMs make their work day more efficient. Find out how!
Minutes matter to a busy CSM.
There are only so many hours in a day; and when those hours are filled with back-to-back Zoom meetings, QBR’s, and renewal discussions, it’s hard to devote the time and energy required to update your customer database properly.
But a CS organization needs clean data to run well. So how can a CSM balance the needs of the day with the needs of the business without shirking other tasks or doing unpaid overtime?
As it turns out, Catalyst was built exactly with that situation in mind.
In this post, we’ll discuss three areas of a CSM’s daily routine that end up being huge time sinks, and what Catalyst does to help speed them up without sacrificing quality or efficiency.
All information in this post is drawn from Catalyst’s webinar A Day in the Life of a Catalyst-Powered CSM, which featured Catalyst representatives:
- Sara Skov, Senior Product Marketing Manager
- Cliff Kim, Head of Product
- Julia Rudansky, Senior Product Manager
- Susan Tran, Product Manager
Let’s review where Catalyst can make a real difference in a CSM’s daily life:
1. Daily Prep
When we talk about daily prep, we’re not talking about your morning coffee or those first few urgent emails. Rather, we’re talking about when you review all of the trainings you have to conduct, the people you have to contact, and the problems you have to solve (which if you’re not already doing, we highly recommend you start).
Every CSM approaches daily prep in a different way. Some refer to their email inbox. Others have calendar reminders. Heck, there are even people who rely on handwritten notes.
While these methods have their merits, they aren’t able to provide a complete picture of what you need through the course of your day. I’m talking about info like:
- Customer lists
- Key segments
- Health trends
- Tasks & reminders
- Product usage
- Upcoming renewals and upsells
Imagine writing all that on a post-it.
All that information can still be accessed by going into Salesforce or any other CRM you might be using, but that uses up valuable time. A daily prep is supposed to be fast--a quick glance to see the most critical things of the day. It’s contradictory to waste time building a mini-report that’s supposed to save you time.
That’s where Catalyst comes in.
Catalyst’s fully-customizable dashboards allow you to build a CSM Dashboard that helps you hone in on your customers. It can include information on whatever you need:
- A list of your priority customers
- Overdue and upcoming tasks
- At risk accounts
- Customers by lifecycle stage
All these and more can easily be chosen and displayed to match your own needs, while other CSMs on the team can arrange their own unique layout. The key here is being able to build an intuitive, informative dashboard that you can digest at a glance--even while making your next cup of coffee.
Renewal time is the CSM’s ultimate motivator. It’s when CSMs are spurred to reach out and pay customers special attention. Because even customers with whom you regularly communicate can suddenly have last-minute renewal challenges.
But prepping for renewals usually means paging through entire histories of emails, notes, and dates. It’s checking support tickets and contract values. It’s weighing MRR and counting seats and measuring health.
Can you do all that in less than fifteen minutes?
You can with Catalyst.
Specifically, with a properly built-out Renewals dashboard. Since it’s customizable, you can put whichever filters and sorting options you like, whether you want to see upcoming renewals this month or a wider picture 90 days out--just to name one example.
You’re able to better track and prioritize your renewals and plan your next steps.
2. Customer Calls
Customer calls are a CSM’s bread and butter, and yet this is usually the most hectic part of a CSM’s day. The meeting prep is always done in a rush as you scramble from one appointment to the next. Note taking can be haphazard depending on the flow of the conversation and how much important info needs to be retained. And then comes sharing those notes with the rest of your team.
Is it any wonder that customer calls take up most of a CSM’s time?.
The “5-Minute Meeting Prep”
For many CSMs, customer calls occur in a non-stop stream of conversations. Calls can be so stacked that people barely have any spare time to answer urgent emails--let alone spend precious minutes hunting the customer down on Salesforce.
That’s why it’s so important to have a way to get a quick yet deep glance into your customer’s status and history.
Fortunately, Catalyst has an Account Overview page that lets you review all the to-do’s attached to the account. That includes both pending and completed items. You can get the status on those items so that you can give the appropriate updates on the call.
If you need to drill deeper into the account, you can switch to different tabs from the Account Overview page, such as the Usage tab to review product usage, the Adoption tab to assess its footprint with the company, and much more.
Most humans don’t have a perfect memory--that’s why we take notes. Everyone has their own preferences--sometimes it’s a notebook, other times it’s typing it into a Word doc for later clean-up. Not all of these processes are efficient. In the case of the notebook or Word doc, you’re essentially doubling your own workload since you would eventually have to retype those notes into your CRM for posterity.
Catalyst’s Note feature lets you type directly into your database during the call and set tasks for yourself at the same time. To make the best use of Notes, you can pre-format the Note for your meeting by laying out your agenda and setting up Tasks that you already know you want to accomplish.
You can also start a new Note during a meeting, say a Feature Request, and then minimize it so that you can finish completing it once your meeting is over.
Your job doesn’t end when the Zoom meeting ends. You have to follow up on the points you discussed, as well as share learnings and next steps with the rest of your team.
To that end, we suggest Catalyst’s Note Comments and our Slack integration: two features that help CSM’s collaborate with the rest of the company.
Note comments are an easy way to bring in other team members. You just @mention them and they will receive a notification. From there, they can go to your note, review it, and if necessary discuss it with you in a secondary conversation thread.
The Slack integration allows you to publish Catalyst Notes directly into whatever channels you want depending on the nature of the Note. For example, marketing opportunities can be published into your #marketing channel, product-related questions can go into the #product channel, and customer notes can go into customer-specific channels. It’s versatile and effective.
3. Risk Escalation
Nothing induces panic in a CSM more than when a customer says, “we have a new boss.” Is the new boss going to shake things up and recommend a new tool? Are they going to reduce the number of seats? Are they going to renegotiate the contract?
It’s important to react quickly at times like this. There is no 90-day notice.
Your company should define a process for these situations that includes who should be notified, what should be discussed, and what options are on the table.
Catalyst’s Task Templates can help. With Task Templates, you can create a pre-set list of action items that will alert the right people on your team to the new risk. This means less time spent wondering what to do and who to talk to, and more time spent discussing strategy and the right course of action.
This isn’t all that Catalyst can do, of course. But these are the features that can help any customer success manager find time in their day to send a few more emails, conduct another QBR, or just get a much-needed break.
If you have any other questions about Catalyst and how it can turn your CSMs into happiness-generating machines, reach out!
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