Dreamforce, Arse-Kissing, and Behavioral vs. Attitudinal Loyalty

A protracted methods again, I used to be assembly with certainly one of our largest prospects, certainly one of our first $1m TCV offers.  As I used to be coming, another person was leaving – Marc Benioff. He’d come (flying personal I assume, and presumably straight from Hawaii) to … kiss the client’s arse, as close to as I may inform.  The client already had 1000’s and 1000’s of seats of Salesforce.  It wasn’t a gross sales name.  It was an in-person, gasoline up the jet, arse-kissing name.

It did shock me.  I imply, Marc Benioff doesn’t need to kiss anybody’s arse.  He’s a billionaire and the CEO of the biggest vendor in all of SaaS.  And most significantly, he has folks.  Plenty of folks.  Sturdy folks.  Who can go do arse kissing for him.

So what was up?  It took me some time to course of.  Then got here my first Dreamforce as a non-vendor, the primary one I didn’t need to do sales space responsibility in.  Which gave me time to mirror.

After which it turned clear.  Buyer occasions are all about sustaining (not creating, however sustaining) attitudinal loyalty (whether or not everybody realizes it or not).  Sure, gross sales reps will let you know they shut probably the most offers of the yr at Dreamforce.  However I believe that’s actually secondary.

In case you haven’t explored the distinction between behavioral and attitudinal loyalty, it’s one of the crucial vital issues you may perceive in SaaS buyer success.  Principally, the speculation states that prospects are loyal for certainly one of two causes:  behavior, or behavior+they love you.

  • The basic instance of Behavioral Loyalty is say United Airways.  Nobody loves United.  However the prospects are nonetheless loyal, i.e. they’re nonetheless repeat prospects, as a result of (1) they get invested within the frequent flyer program and (2) the actual flights are understood and acquainted.
  • The basic excessive instance of Attitudinal Loyalty is say Apple.  Apple treats us like filth.  But, we not solely love them.  Extra importantly, we need to purchase all their new stuff.

And the important thing distinction market researchers say between Behavioral and Attitudinal loyalty isn’t what you’d anticipate – the churn charge.  The emblem churn charge is commonly comparable within the short-term.  The distinction is the upsell and NRR.  Manufacturers we’re attitudinally loyalty to, we need to purchase extra stuff from.  Apple comes out with a TV?  We’ll have a look for certain.  Notion a cool AI extension?  I completely need to be taught extra.  But when United comes out with a automobile rental program?  No means I’ll waste even 10 seconds it.

And in SaaS, manufacturers we’re attitudinal loyalty to, we purchase extra from.  We take website licenses.  We purchase extra seats.  We purchase extra modules, e.g. for Salesforce, the Service Cloud, and now, the Advertising and marketing Cloud.  It’s possible you’ll or could not purchase.  However in case you are attitudinally loyal — you’ll have a look.

Okay, so what does this need to do with Dreamforce and Benioff’s courtesy name?

Properly, right here’s what I believe occurs with SaaS.  It’s good to construction your crew to evolve this fashion:

  • At first, your prospects purchase your product as a result of it’s higher.  Typically, 10x higher than what’s on the market.  In any other case, why change?
  • And to start with, they’re the truth is attitudinally loyal by definition.  They purchased one thing 10x higher.  It’s cool.  They love your model, as long as you retain including cool options, and your website keep up.
  • I believe that works for about 12-18 mos.  Nice product = nice success on your purchaser/champion = attitudinal loyalty.
  • After which … you need to kiss some arse.   A minimum of within the enterprise.  You gotta get on a aircraft, and go kiss some arse.  And for these you may’t get on a aircraft … you want a Dreamforce or a BoxWorks, or for EchoSign, a WebContracts convention.  No matter.

You possibly can upsell within the first 6-18 mos. with out it.  However after that, it’s worthwhile to hold the private connection going to keep up attitudinal loyalty.  You don’t need to get on a aircraft.  You’ll most likely hold the client resulting from behavioral loyalty.  However they’ll fall out of affection, and also you’ll discover it exhausting to promote them something extra, or anything.

A associated submit right here:

Need Joyful Prospects? Implement the 5-Visits-Plus-2-Badges Rule. For Your Buyer Success Workforce — And You. (Up to date)

(word: an up to date SaaStr Traditional submit)

Revealed on April 10, 2023

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