How to run customer interviews that unlock growth for your SaaS

(Coming Soon)

Georgiana Laudi & Claire Suellentrop

Forget The Funnel

From competitive analysis to NPS surveys to UX research, research can help you grow your business and revenue.

But you're wasting your time if you jump into those research types without a foundational understanding of your ideal customer and what they’re trying to accomplish. You’ll end up down unhelpful or misleading paths that leave you with more questions than answers. As they say, you’ll be ‘missing the forest for the trees’.

Starting with qualitative customer interviews—conversations with your best customers about what led them to your solution in the first place and the value you’re driving for them now–is the gold standard for a reason.  

Customer interviews are how you reverse engineer their experience to find and acquire more customers like them.

In this episode of the Forget the Funnel podcast, Claire and Georgiana get super tactical about the art of interviewing customers. They explain what it takes to interview well, the critical elements of a Jobs-to-Be-Done interview, and the pitfalls to avoid when you’re new to customer research.

Discussed:

  • How to pick the right customers to interview and the skills that make someone a great customer interviewer so you can choose the right team member to run them
  • The elements of an effective Jobs-to-Be-Done style interview and questions to ask.
  • Mistakes you should avoid in customer research, how a question script can help, and how bringing in an outside expert can be an advantage for deeper learning with the added benefit to the team.

Key moments:

1:32—Georgiana asks Claire to clarify why you would choose customer interviews over other customer research methods. Claire shares how learning from your ideal customers is the foundational research that helps you make strategic decisions.

5:02—Claire explains how one client with a broad customer base chose the right customers to interview: They started with a survey to gather key data points and identify who had embedded a critical feature into their workflow.

9:27 - Claire explains the “unfair advantage” some of your team members may have for customer interviews: a knack for active listening and navigating unpredictability without getting flustered.

10:10 - Georgiana asks Claire to break down the elements of a Jobs-to-Be-Done-style interview, and Claire shares about guiding the customer to explain what their life looked like before they “hired” your solution.

13:48 - After uncovering the story that led them to choose your solution, ask questions to find what your customers can do now that they couldn’t do before.

17:21 - Claire breaks down the pitfalls to avoid if your team is new to customer research. She recommends having a question script (one you adapt as you go) or outsourcing customer interviews to an expert.

19:22—Georgiana talks about why sensing a customer’s energy makes interviewing a task that AI won’t be able to take over for humans anytime soon.

22:20—The pair finishes out the episode with their advice to founders about outsourcing customer interviews: You get the benefit of external expertise, and someone from your team can ride sidecar to upskill and do it themselves in the future.

Transcript

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Georgiana Laudi & Claire Suellentrop

When it comes to growing multi-million dollar SaaS businesses, we’ve seen what works. Both separately and together, we've built best-in-class brands from the ground up and played key roles in revenue growth. While our background stories may differ — Gia’s a Canadian who’s been marketing since 2000; Claire’s an American whose marketing career began in 2012 — we’re united in wanting to support those growing SaaS companies, and to provide resources they need to step up as strategic leaders. You can learn more about us here.

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