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Often, a customer's life in a SaaS vendor organization can start to seem like a series of checkpoints, each leading to the next step in the project. These checkpoints can be in-person meetings, quarterly reviews, weekly calls, or however else your team checks in with customers.
While having great, well-planned, and well-executed customer check-ins is crucial for any successful customer success strategy, it's only the first part. An additional step is needed to help the customer lifecycle move smoothly from one checkpoint to the next: the follow-up email.
Here are five key elements to take into account when you're building and sending your next customer success follow-up email:
1.Timeliness: To keep your information fresh and ensure that your meeting is still top-of-mind when you send out your follow-up, it must be sent promptly after your meeting or call. The professional recommendation is the same day as your call or meeting, but if you need to research or gather more information from other teams to populate your email fully, then within a 24-hour time period.
2. Recipients: The next essential element of a good follow-up email is the recipients. While everyone from the original call or meeting should be included (even if they weren't able to attend), it's also possible you will need to include other stakeholders or resources. This will typically happen if you need a resource to help achieve an action item discussed in the meeting or if you want to maintain transparency with your leadership or executive team.
3. Succinctness: Let's get this out in the open: a follow-up email should not be a word-for-word recap of your meeting itself. Instead, the follow-up should capture the big-picture summary and key takeaways, as well as next steps and action items. Keep it short, sweet, and to the point.
4. Next Steps: One of the biggest reasons follow-up emails are so critical after customer calls is that they often serve as a bridge between meetings to keep your customer projects alive and keep things moving in between live conversations. To do this, the next steps should be clearly defined and outlined in a follow-up email. This means sending a bulleted list of next steps with clear objectives, owners, and timelines.
5. Validation: In every step of the customer lifecycle, it's essential to be on the same page as your customers, and the meeting follow-up is no different. At the end of your meeting follow-up, seek validation from your customer to ensure your note captured the notes and next steps as they understood them. If there are next steps on their end, ask them to reach out with any issues or questions as they are working through things. Use this follow-up email to kick off a thread to work through the project and stay on task for your next meeting.
While customer meetings are essential to any customer's long-term success, the meeting follow-up email is just as critical to ensuring everyone is on the same page, especially as more and more teams are meeting virtually. How is your team capturing follow-up items coming out of customer meetings?
You can learn more about optimizing your customer communication strategy with these additional resources from ClientSuccess: