PART 3: The “Great Downsizing” is actually a Huge Opportunity for Customer Marketing

Check out the third of our 10-part series on Achieving the CX Career of Your Dreams. Given our chaotic tech economy, we're adding a SPECIAL WEBINAR on Feb. 22 with two of our Roundtable luminaries! (Please see the graphic >)
But first, a recap:
PART 1: Your most important strategy to achieve your dream career is to establish your customers as the most potent resource for growing the business.
PART 2: Your biggest barriers are that your C-suite need to be educated about this (by you), and that you're subordinated to a large, powerful silo (typically Marketing), in which I provide tactics to cope.
The "Great Rightsizing" is actually a Huge Opportunity for Customer Marketing
You heard me right. A Huge Opportunity! Here's how to explain it to your leadership, based on our own discussions with several senior leaders in tech– including our guests at our 2/22 SPECIAL WEBINAR.
1. The traditional growth playbook—Marketing, Sales and Support, or “The Big 3”—is sinking like the Titanic.
We’ve known for years that the Big 3 are increasingly ineffective with customers in the Digital Age. They want alternatives to marketing spin, sales focused on wins and other practices from the Industrial Age. Customers don’t trust or feel empathy from The Big 3. Their employees aren’t peers to customers or walk in their shoes. They operate under obvious conflicts of interest (like KPIs and commissions).
In the digital age, customers can fire (or disintermediate) them: 54% of B2B Millennial buyers today want ZERO contact with sales reps!
It’s therefore essential for today’s senior leaders to ask: “From whom do customers want to hear and get help in their journeys?"
2. When customers face hard decisions, they want to connect with other customers like them. Full stop.
Of course, that would be the customers CM cultivates and knows more about than anyone in the company. CM pros know this. What’s important is that progressive senior leaders should too.
Check this out:
“For all difficult decisions in the Customer Journey—pre-sale and post—customers most want to hear from other customers like them. And that’s true throughout the customer journey, pre-sale and post.”
Nick Mehta, CEO, Gainsight
Think about that: even customers deciding whether to adopt or renew would prefer to connect with another customer like them rather than a customer success manager—according to the planet’s top expert on Customer Success!
Clearly, CM has a central, perhaps THE CENTRAL role to play in making sure this happens.
We’ll be talking to Nick in our Feb. 22 SPECIAL WEBINAR about this and its implications for your job, and career.
So how do you take advantage of the decline of the Big 3, and the new imperative of growth by connecting customers—also called “customer-led growth”?
3. Customer Marketers have to take the initiative.
You can’t wait for senior leaders to ask you, because even the most progressive leaders don’t fully understand the scope of these changes. All they know is that they need more efficient growth than the Big 3 are providing now.
Christina Kosmowski, our other co-host for the 2/22 webinar, has been having these conversations as we speak with her board. She was a native customer engagement professional–like you!–eventually heading up both customer success and customer marketing at Salesforce and Slate, before ascending to CEO at LogicMonitor.
In her webinar last Fall, she told us how she addressed this conversation with her board. In our 2/22 webinar, she’ll be talking about how you can broach this conversation with leadership and persuade.
It's a can't miss.
APPENDIX. Where Our Info and Research Come From.
Bill Lee created the categories of Customer Advocacy, Customer Engagement and the metric, Return on Relationship™—the foundations of Customer Marketing and Customer-Led Growth. His Center for Customer Engagement built a global community of leading B2B firms around these concepts. He built the longest-running, most respected CX conference in the world. Bill is widely published including 20+ publications in HBR–including his seminal book The Hidden Wealth of Customers.
Jeff Ernst is co-founder of the Customer-Led Movement, a cohort of marketing and sales leaders who drive this mindset and behavior change into their organizations. His company, SlapFive, is the first Customer Marketing Software platform to drive Customer-Led Growth. A former executive at Forrester, he's appeared widely in media like Forbes CMO Network, Financial Times,, Mashable, Huffington Post, NPR and others.
Since 2020Bill and Jeff have been building the Roundtable for a Customer Revolution–an expanding consortium of titans in tech leadership. It includes CEOs, CXOs, Heads of CX, CX pros who aspire to senior leadership, and innovative vendors and thought leaders. Names include Christina, Nick Mehta, Fred Reichheld, Carol Meyers, Teresa Anania, Brent Adamson, Jake Sorofman, and more. It provides CX pros with matchless experience, advice, mentoring and more. Many of you, for example, know them from our Webinar Series.
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