Where traditional sales models assumed that revenue opportunities were most present in the early phases of the customer engagement, new models operate with the understanding that post-sales opportunities after customer adoption are in fact the most lucrative. Businesses are investing more heavily in people, processes, and digital platforms that help power effective customer lifecycle management with automation and analytics.
In traditional sales approaches, the ultimate target has been closing the deal. In a subscription economy, the key to success is actively managing customers throughout the post-sale relationship, with a commitment to ensuring that their desired business outcomes are achieved. Recognizing that service worth and buyer reliance is now realized over time as opposed to up front, delivering tangible, ongoing value must be at the crux of new customer success models.
Sales strategies and tactics of the past may not generate meaningful outcomes in the consumption economy. When reinventing sales models, companies and their channel partners should place new and stronger emphasis on post-sale customer engagement. This represents a shift in the old sales mindset and acknowledgement that AFTER the initial sale is now where the greatest revenue opportunities exist.
As businesses pivot towards recurring revenue streams and the delivery of subscription-based offerings, they must build a sale model that nurtures the end-to-end customer experience from initial sales, to adoption, and renewal. Today’s successful customer engagement models are reliant on the following four distinct sales motions:
- Land – Marks the initial sale of all product and services attach, ownership for integrated account management and delivery of business outcomes.
- Adopt – Accelerates value realization for customers and leads greater propensity to expand and renew. When customers use what they purchased, renewals increase 34%.
- Expand – The ongoing process of delivering incremental value during which customers consume more offers, features, and functionalities, and buy more capabilities or seats to enhance or expand implementation.
- Renew – The point at which technology installs and options are revisited and annuity revenues are maximized. Renewals should be a non-event as customers realize the value of solution they bought.
In the subscription economy, value realization is intimately tied to the customer’s successful adoption of technology investments and the resulting business outcomes they achieve. To operate in lockstep with customers, it is incumbent upon the value chain to structure its business model and sales objectives accordingly, with a goal of optimizing the customer experience—from demand to renewal—to create relationships for life. With this approach, everyone wins, and the reward for the value chain includes reduced churn, on-time renewals, and a continuous cycle of up-sell and cross-sell revenue opportunities.