Blogs, news and insights
10
 
Feb2016

Q&A with the FT’s Head of B2B Customer Success

 
 
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Meet our Head of  B2B Customer Success. A critical and unique part of our corporate offering; Shannon ensures our customers get the most from their subscriptions through her highly motivated teams and commitment to personal & professional value.

Tell us about your role at the Financial Times

I am Head of B2B Customer Success. Simply put, I head up the B2B Customer Success team to work in partnership with our paid and prospective customers as well as internal B2B departments, such as sales and marketing, to understand the value our customers get out of their FT access. We then build and deliver a strategic plan that enables the customer to not only realise that value, but also highlight additional opportunities and  build a long, mutually beneficial partnership.

How long have you been working in this field?

Customer Success is relatively young so I’m fortunate to have been in it pretty much from the UK birth but really we are all in the business of customer success so even back when I was heading up sales and customer services I was performing many of the elements already. I just didn’t know what to call it!

What are your key motivations and drivers?

I’m fascinated by the psychology behind subscription services. I enjoy using customer data, feedback and behaviors to map personal drivers for use and then creating a link to commercial reasons for purchase. Delivering that value to the individual AND the organisation gives me a thrill!

Do you notice any trends within the customer success environment?

Customer segmentation and journey personalisation are hot right now in Customer Success. We are also starting to rely more heavily on using customer engagement and behavior data to direct our human resource. We can also automate more personalised contact which means we can be smarter with our teams and ensure we deliver hands-on support where there is the most value for both us and the customer.

What do you hope to deliver to Financial Times’ corporate customers?

I’m passionate about the customer experience and I will always put myself in their shoes when considering any process or communication implementation. With that in mind I hope to deliver a journey that is effortless, customer focused and habit forming without the customer even realising they are on a journey.  The realisation of value should be effortless and our approach across all departments should be seamless.

Taking your work hat off,  what would you, as a consumer, like to see advance in the next five years?

Gosh. I’ve been trying to firmly fix my work hat all month! An IOS app would make my life much easier! With push alerts that prompt me to read updates in the app rather than getting 20 emails each day.

What is your biggest achievement?

I launched Customer Success at RBI in 2013 and was able to use my methodology and the support of marketing to turn our US engagement crisis around, reducing our No-Shows from 85% to less than 20% in just 12 months.

What excites you about digital technology, publishing and its future?

I’m fascinated by the move from print to digital and how Customer Success can be a part of that evolution. Customer Success in SAAS companies rely on very tangible success data which we simply do not have in digital publishing. I can’t report on the way our end users use the knowledge gained from our content and I really love the opportunities that it creates for us to remain very close to our customers.

Find out more about how what our corporate customer services can offer here.