Main illustration: Jason Yim
This year, we launched Scale, a new content strand focusing on how industry leaders are propelling their companies forward by keeping their customers front and center.
When we created Scale, we had no idea what the year would hold in store; we simply knew that investing in long-term customer relationships was the key to success. As it happens, 2020 has only reinforced this, by highlighting again and again the importance of strong customer relationships as the structural foundation on which solid businesses are built.
“Businesses moved online in new and creative ways that allowed them to recreate and maintain the personal connection with their buyers”
It’s been a challenging year for businesses and consumers alike, with many of us having to make significant pivots in both our professional and personal lives. But as the physical distance between us increased (to a minimum of 6ft, please), businesses moved online in new and creative ways that allowed them to recreate and maintain the personal connection with their buyers even when they couldn’t operate in person.
With this new context in mind, Scale looked at key trends and emerging ways of thinking, offered strategic guidance to business challenges, and gleaned key insights from industry leaders navigating the new landscape.
So what did we cover this year?
We thought deeply about what defines great customer support
- We charted the rise of conversational support and the end of “eh, good enough.”
- We launched the Conversational Support Funnel, a new framework for thinking about how to empower your team to provide the best support for your customers.
- We explored how customer support is evolving into a value driver, not a cost center.
- We argued that support teams are driving greater customer loyalty – and faster growth.
- We predicted that your next wave of growth will come from conversational relationships across the board: not just in support, but in marketing and sales, too.
We laid out some actionable ways to improve your customer support in the new year
- We broke down the key customer support trends you need to know for 2021.
- We surveyed support leaders to understand the state of automated support and found that there’s a growing demand for automation.
- We broke down the reasons why support teams need to balance customer experience and efficiency, and how you can find an equilibrium.
- We interviewed Chris Jewitt, Customer Success Manager at Klaus, to find out his best practices for building a strong, scalable support experience.
We talked to some incredible industry leaders about how customer relationships have been central to their growth
- Zapier’s Pam Dodrill, VP of Customer Support and Success, on balancing efficiency with another essential metric: customer outcomes.
- Shopify Plus’ General Manager Loren Padelford on how truly understanding your customer and offering them an exceptional experience is the key to commerce.
- CEO of Officium Labs and co-founder of CX Accelerator Nate Brown on why proactive CX is the next competitive battleground, plus the 4 tenets of a great customer experience.
- HubSpot’s CEO Brian Halligan on how conversational relationships can drive exponential growth.
- Sprinklr’s VP of Marketing Yoli Chisholm on unlocking the key to one-to-one marketing at scale.
- Clearbit’s VP of Customer Success Luke Diaz on making automation personal – and meaningful.
What’s coming in 2021?
This year has seen unprecedented accelerations in the way we use technology to interact with and provide for our customers, and there’s no turning back now.
With strong customer relationships proving to be more crucial than ever to companies’ ongoing growth and success, we’ll be continuing to explore how you can navigate this landscape in a personalized, customer-centric way – even as you scale. And as business invents a new normal, we’ll be talking to the people leading the charge.