How To Improve Customer Retention and Reduce Churn With Proactive Engagement?

How To Improve Customer Retention and Reduce Churn With Proactive Engagement?

Customer engagement is a key factor in SaaS growth. A proactive engagement strategy is a great way to keep your customers fully engaged with your product.

In this blog post, you’ll learn exactly what a proactive engagement strategy is, its benefits, and how you can create one.

Let’s get started!


  • Proactive engagement is a means of providing customer service where companies actively make the first move to figure out the issues their customers are having.
  • This requires you to understand customer behaviors at every stage of the funnel and work out ways to make that experience smooth so they can progress to the next stage.
  • In contrast to the reactive engagement strategy of waiting for customers to contact you first with their problems, this method encourages proactive engagement.
  • Proactive engagement has a lot of benefits, like providing a great customer experience and reducing your churn rates.
  • It also helps your company stay competitive in a very competitive market.
  • There are five steps involved in creating a proactive customer engagement plan.
  1. The first thing is to map out each stage of the funnel so you know what success looks like and how to help customers achieve that.
  2. Next is to segment users based on their needs so you can deliver a personalized experience to each.
  3. Then create a proactive onboarding flow using checklists to interact with customers and guide them through your product.
  4. Afterward, you might want to use feedback surveys to gather data about customers’ experiences. This will allow you to devise a proactive plan to target customers who are likely to churn.
  • There are multiple ways your SaaS business can implement a proactive engagement strategy.
  • You can use welcome screens to segment customers and provide a customized onboarding experience.
  • Another way of proactively reaching out to customers is using NPS and customer satisfaction surveys to collect user sentiment and turn detractors into promoters.
  • You can also use chatbots to interact with users and provide them with the necessary support.
  • With a tool like Userpilot, you can build welcome screens, NPS surveys, and other product experiences code-free.

What is proactive engagement in SaaS?

Proactive engagement is a customer engagement strategy that requires you to anticipate the customer’s needs at every stage of their journey and provide them with relevant content or assistance even before they ask.

What are the benefits of proactive engagement?

Taking a proactive approach to customer engagement means being one step ahead of your customers. This means that before they reach a friction point, you have already provided them with the knowledge they need. Engaging customers in this way leads to a good experience with the product.

Furthermore, it helps you engage customers at every stage of the funnel with personalized support in order to increase revenue and decrease churn.

Proactive engagement will also help you reduce the volume of support tickets as customers will already have the answers to their questions when you reach out to them first.

Reactive vs proactive engagement: Which one is better?

Reactive engagement means you provide support and assistance to customers after they have contacted you with a problem. In other words, if a user doesn’t ask for support, they may never get it. This makes it easy for them to quickly disengage and even cancel their subscription.

Both are useful, but proactive customer engagement is more effective. This is because it makes for a better customer experience while improving customer retention. When you offer relevant help to your customers at each stage of their journey, you reduce friction points and make it easier for them to get the most benefit out of your product.

5 Steps to create a proactive customer engagement strategy

An effective proactive customer engagement strategy will help you achieve increased conversion rates and increased revenue. Here are five steps to creating a proactive customer engagement strategy for your SaaS.

Define milestones in the journey

Proactive engagement looks at each stage of the customer’s journey to provide them with necessary assistance. To succeed at this, you’ll need to map out what these different stages are. You’ll also have to identify customer needs at each point and what customer success milestones look like for each stage.

This way you’ll understand what type of support customers will require at different touchpoints of their journey to remain engaged.

Different stages of the customer buying cycle
User journey template.

Segment users based on needs

Segmentation helps you group your different customers based on their different needs. You can use a welcome screen to do this during onboarding.

Apart from welcoming new customers and greeting them, you can use welcome screens to ask them a few questions and collect information about their needs. This will help you understand each user and create a personalized and proactive onboarding engagement strategy that is relevant to their specific use case.

With Userpilot you can create these onboarding welcome screens code-free.

Segment customers to collect data and deliver personalized support
Postfity’s welcome screen, created with Userpilot.

Create proactive onboarding flows to set customers for success

After segmenting each customer based on their needs, the next step is to create a proactive onboarding flow to help them achieve maximum value from your product.

To do this, use onboarding checklists. This is a list of specific actions/tasks users need to complete to quickly reach the activation point. Onboarding checklists serve as a guide through your product for new users.

You can build these checklists into your product, using Userpilot.

Onboarding checklists
Rocketbots uses checklists to prompt users to the activation point.

Collect feedback and measure customer satisfaction

Customer satisfaction is an indication of how existing customers experience your product. You can use microsurveys at different touchpoints of the user’s journey to collect customer feedback on their experience.

Customer Satisfaction Survey
Hubspot’s CSAT survey.

You can use this information to provide better customer service by providing users with what they need.

With Userpilot, you can easily create surveys like the NPS survey, code-free.

NPS survey
Slack uses NPS surveys to collect feedback.

Reach out to customers at-risk and offer personalized support

Now you can identify those customers who are most likely to churn by conducting loyalty and satisfaction surveys. Next, you’ll need to prevent churn by proactively reaching out to such users and resolving customer issues before it’s too late.

Proactive engagement examples

Proactive engagement can be used for different purposes, starting from onboarding to providing support to upgrading customers, etc.

Here are three good examples of SaaS proactive engagement.

Slack uses Slackbot to proactively engage with customers and onboard them

The process of onboarding new users and introducing them to your product is an important step as it marks the beginning of their journey. Thus, you want it to be as smooth as possible and for users to be engaged.

The Slackbot is an excellent example of proactive customer engagement since it welcomes you just after you sign up and helps you set up your space. The company uses proactive messaging and chats to offer customers resources they may need at specific points in time.

Slack uses proactive chats to engage and onboard customers
Slack’s proactive engagement example.

Asana uses modals to proactively engage with new users and understand them better

If you know your customers on a deep level, you can always provide a better customer experience. This is what Asana tries to achieve.

Asana’s signup process includes a section for customers to choose their main objective. Using this information, Asana segments customers into distinct groups to provide the right support needed to achieve success.

Use segmentation to provide customers with personalized service
Asana’s proactive engagement example.

Postfity uses slideouts to proactively engage with customers before the trial is over

In this example, Postfity uses slideouts to engage with customers and remind them to upgrade their accounts before the end of their trial. It also gives them an option to have a chat with a customer success team to provide a personal touch on their journey to help them resolve issues and even increase their chances of converting.

Drive leads to upgrade using proactive notifications
Postfity’s proactive engagement example.


Proactive customer engagement is necessary to help you engage and delight customers. Anticipating their needs at every stage and providing them with what they need will increase their chances of retention.

This is always better than waiting for customers to get frustrated and complain about an issue first. In some cases, users will leave your product at the first sign of friction, rather than reach out for assistance. This is why your SaaS business needs a more proactive approach to customer support.

Want to build proactive engagement experiences code-free in your product? Book a demo call with our team and get started!

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