Illustrated image of four people standing on separate puzzle pieces in Slack colors

Slack for customer success: 4 ways to collaborate and improve customer experience

This guide reviews how to use Slack for Customer Success teams to collaborate internally and with customers, automate tasks, and streamline processes.

Customer Success is all about enhancing the customer experience. However, a string of different communication tools and a lack of centralized information slows teams down. Slack helps by bringing your people and processes together in one place—driving collaboration, alignment and communication so you can meet and exceed customer expectations.

[stat_row stat_1="50% | fewer customer meetings for an account manager" stat_2="60% | decrease in turnaround time for customer responses"/]

Collaborate and share knowledge faster

 

Learn how to use Slack to efficiently collaborate and share knowledge internally.

Channels

Improving customer loyalty requires a deep understanding of each customer’s unique needs paired with internal team alignment to address them. In today’s fast-paced business environment, that’s hard to achieve if your team relies on email communication. Move internal cross-functional teams into Slack channels and start collaborating on an account or task in real time.

Examples of channels:

  • #account-customer-name channels to collaborate on an opportunity, plan strategy, monitor a customer’s onboarding progress, share important documents and keep a historical record of the account’s history.
  • #cs-staffing channel to ensure staffing requests are handled in a timely manner.
  • #cs-help channel to enable cross-functional collaboration and bring in the appropriate subject matter experts quickly.
  • #announcements channels specific to a department or location, with select users able to post.
  • #product-feedback channels to be the voice of your customer and enable cross-team collaboration.
  • #competitive-intel channels to see what’s happening in the life of your competitors.

Organize channels by team (#cs-team), projects and accounts (#acct-wiremax), region (#cs-asia) and function (#renewal-notifications or #cs-announcements) to keep conversations focused. Star frequently used channels, so they’re pinned to the top of your sidebar, making them easy to find. To keep your sidebar organized, create sections to group similar channels together. For example, create a section for accounts (like internal account channels and external account channels with customers), DMs, team channels and projects.

[product_ui id="6703170379091" description="A screenshot of using Slack for an account channel to communicate about a customer with various internal teams" /]

Learn more about how to create a channel.

Customer handoff and onboarding

Customer Success and Sales can create a seamless transition for the customer from pre- to post-sale with specific account channels. Customer Success reviews historical customer information and communicates directly with the sales team if questions arise.

Account channels are also a great place for Customer Success reps to quickly get up to speed when they take over an account for a team member on PTO or family parental leave. With one central place for all account-specific communication, everyone from executives to management to reps can stay informed.

Use canvas—located in the right-hand corner of every Slack channel and DM—to help teams easily store, manage and share knowledge during account transfers or customer handoffs. Embed important files, videos, links, client contact information, to-do’s and other relevant information so it doesn’t get lost in lengthy conversation threads. You can also create stand-alone canvases to reference project plans, take meeting notes or share a checklist across multiple channels or company-wide.

Support cases

Create a #support-cases channel so Success, Sales and Support can be informed:

  • An incident is happening
  • Its severity and impact
  • The actions to take
  • The messages that can be shared externally with customers
  • The RCA (root cause analysis) that can be shared

Be sure notifications for this channel are on so you don’t miss important updates. To be notified to new messages or mentions:

  1. Open the channel.
  2. Click the channel name in the conversation header.
  3. Below the channel name, click the notifications drop-down menu.
  4. Choose your notification preference.
  5. Click the X close icon in the top right when you’re done.

Monitor tickets from support

It’s important for Customer Success teams to monitor what’s happening to their customers. Integrate Salesforce Service Cloud or other ticketing systems to track incidents and respond quickly to requests for training or upgrades.

Product feedback

Improve the product feedback loop by centralizing information about products or features with a specific channel (like #product-feedback or #mobile-app). If customers personally share feedback with account leads, that information can be relayed here.

Make sure the channel is public and customer success, customer service, IT and developer teams have notifications turned on so triaging issues and sharing the status of fixes and product updates can be done quickly and easily. Account leads can then share updates with customers in Slack Connect.

[product_ui id="6700438599653" description="A screenshot of using Slack to communicate customer feedback to the product team" /]

Standardize and automate time-consuming processes

Learn how to help your team focus on building customer relationships, not day-to-day processes, with standardization and automation tools.

Onboard new hires

Get new teammates up and running quickly with an automated onboarding process and a canvas that shares important channel information in a single view. Start by creating a welcome bot with Workflow Builder. As soon as the new teammate joins a specific channel, they’ll receive a welcome message that includes information such as:

  • What the channel is for
  • Roles and responsibilities
  • Instructions on how to make requests
  • Important documents, like kickoff notes and contract stipulations

Start creating workflows in just a few clicks:

  1. From your desktop, find your workspace on the left-hand side.
  2. Select More.
  3. Select Automations, which will open in a new window.

Then, make sure to pin messages containing important information like an FAQ doc, project notes, links, etc. at the top of every channel for easy reference. Users can also bookmark other important resources about a project or account so they are highlighted at the top of the channel’s header, making it easy for new hires to find what they need. And if new teammates can’t find an answer to their question in the pinned or bookmarked resources provided, encourage them to use Slack’s search functionality.

[product_ui id="6703493293906" description="A screenshot of using a workflow to welcome a new hire" /]

Request intake forms

Whether you’re trying to find the right request form or are in charge of gathering the right information as requests come in, it can be a battle to get the process running smoothly. Use workflow requests in channels to standardize the intake process.

Create request forms for:

  • Customer Success staffing
  • Executive Business Reviews (EBRs)
  • Renewals
  • Legal reviews
  • Account transfers
  • Meetings with cross-functional partners

Be sure to add relevant forms in each channel’s canvas for quick access.

Integrate key applications

Choose from 2,600+ apps and integrations to improve productivity for your team.

Recommend apps for customer success teams:

  • Salesforce Sales Cloud—Set up real-time and custom alerts. When a sales opportunity or renewal is updated, the app will automatically inform a channel so a cross-functional team can immediately start working on the next steps.
  • Google Calendar and Outlook Calendar—Never miss an important customer meeting again. Accept or decline meetings, get a notification 10 minutes before a meeting starts and find a link for meetings all within Slack.
  • Google Drive and Box–Collaborate more efficiently on executive business reviews or sales pitch decks. Use this integration to share, comment, view or edit your files in Slack.

Automate external updates with bots

To improve communication with customers and save time for your customer success managers, consider building an app to distribute updates in Slack Connect channels. Start by creating a dedicated channel (like #cs-updates or #cs-bot) and include a form (built with Workflow Builder) so anyone can submit content ideas or messages. Things like upcoming webinars, product updates or release notes can then be shared with hundreds of customers at the same time via Slack Connect, giving your customer success managers more time to provide personalized communication.

Build better customer relationships

How to use Slack Connect to collaborate with customers to solve problems faster and build more valuable relationships.

Slack Connect

Email, texts, phone calls, video and in-person meetings with customers, prospects and partners can be a lot to keep track of. Use Slack Connect to keep communication flowing and provide a historical record for reference. A Slack Connect channel works in the same way a channel does with your internal team. People from up to 250 different companies can join.

To create a shared channel with your customers:

  1. Click the + button next to Channels in your sidebar. Name the channel (include the customer’s company’s name and the project, if applicable), and click Create.
  2. Send the invite by following the prompt to share the channel with an outside workspace. Send your customer or partner an email invite right within Slack, or copy the link and email the invite directly.
  3. Once your customer clicks the link, they’ll be taken back to Slack, where they can accept the invite and set up the channel on their end.
[product_ui id="6703310629155" description="A screenshot of using a Slack connect channel to communicate with the customer and account team" /]

Please note you may need admin approval prior to creating a Slack Connect channel. Learn more about how to get started with Slack Connect.

Onboard customers

Just as you automate the onboarding process for new teammates, you can do the same with your customers. Use Workflow Builder to send an automated message with key information as soon as they join a Slack Connect channel. They can quickly access the project overview, contract, timeline, ongoing notes, product guides or whatever else is relevant. And if the customer adds teammates from their company, they’ll automatically be greeted with the message as well.

Triage issues faster

If a customer is having trouble with a product or feature, they can reach out directly to their customer success manager in the channel. The CS manager can pull in the right people if needed. Everyone can hop on a quick huddle–a tool that enables audio conversations to happen right inside Slack—and work together to resolve the issue quickly.

Complete Executive Business Reviews (EBRs)

Create an internal #exec-programs channel to streamline the EBR process.

  1. Use a form (built with Workflow Builder) to ensure every teammate fills out key information such as preferred date, exec attendees and meeting objectives and attaches relevant documents, like a draft deck.
  2. Slack will automatically tag and notify the execs listed so everyone can collaborate and prepare.
  3. Once the deck is ready, the CS manager shares it ahead of time with the customer in Slack Connect.
  4. After the EBR meeting, the CS manager sends notes and the next best steps in the #exec-programs channel.

Effectively manage teams

How to use Slack to help CS team leaders spend more time coaching internal staff instead of on administrative tasks.

Channels for key tasks

Public team channels are a great place to get key operational tasks done efficiently. Encourage leaders to automate:

  • Team updates
  • Company form requests, like expenses and time off
  • Feedback, like how a new product release is going
  • Reminders, like a nudge to submit timesheets at the end of each week

Use workflow builder templates to get started quickly.

Private channels are best for internal staff one-on-ones or for customer account channels with sensitive information, like customers in the public sector. There, leaders can share one-on-one meeting notes and follow-up action items.

Coach in real time

Sometimes, teammates need a quick brainstorming session or advice on handling an urgent customer situation. Instead of trying to schedule a meeting, use huddles to collaborate and coach in real time. You can:

  • Take notes in a huddle thread so there’s a referable record.
  • Share your screen to collaborate on a document or deck.
  • Turn your camera on if you want to make the session feel more personal.

Learn more on how to use huddles.

Asynchronous communication

Keep your remote teams connected no matter their working location or timezone with schedule-free office hours. Use a channel and a workflow so teammates can submit questions anytime using a form that is linked in the channel’s canvas–an asynchronous file-sharing and communication tool. Leaders can then acknowledge the query and answer it directly. This turns your team channel into a living, searchable FAQ.

Canvas can also be used to:

  • Organize the information your team needs regularly. Add frequently referenced resources so teammates can find them without having to scroll through the conversation.
  • Take notes and align on key tasks with teammates. Organize priorities and collaborate on action items in the canvas in a direct message conservation.

And what if a teammate misses an important meeting? Turn to clips to leave voice or visual notes asynchronously that can be viewed whenever your teammate comes back online. Take it a step further with some help from your engineering team. Create a workflow that collects notes from any Zoom or Google Meeting discussion and automatically shares those notes back with teammates in a specific channel.

Want to learn more?

Slack helps you and your teams surface customer priorities, collaborate faster and drive alignment to strengthen customer loyalty. For more ways to get the most out of Slack, check out our Help Center or contact our support team.

Was this resource useful?

0/600

Awesome!

Thanks so much for your feedback!

Got it!

Thanks for your feedback.

Oops! We're having trouble. Please try again later!