Squid Game

Lessons from “SQUID GAME” For Customer Success Professionals

A tyrannical blood bath with over 400 players competing for the same price is a great analogy for today’s market. We are all just competing for attention from customers. “Squid Game”, a South Korean series is on the tip of the tongue of avid (binge) watchers. There are multiple reasons to love the show. The design is immaculate, the plot is downright crazy, the characters are unique and each episode leaves you wanting for more. Squid Game is a great insight into how to adapt, persevere and come out on top. And you can apply these lessons as Customer Success professionals. 

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A Personalised Journey

The game masters were perfect in their hook. The ambiguity of the game was countered when the candidates saw the value in the game. The game masters pressed the right nerves, researched their candidates, and understood their pain points. This allowed them to capture and retain each candidate for every stage of their journey. Customer Success Managers should take notes on how well-established game masters were with each client as you should be with your accounts/customers. Understanding their pain points, showing them value, and creating a personalized experience are ephemeral skills in the Customer Success domain. 

Work on Trust and Synergy

One of my favorite games in the series was tug of war. It was through trust and ingeniousness that our protagonists made it through to the next stage. Trust and synergy are simple yet important concepts to grasp. As a Customer Success Manager, you need a team you can trust to drive a successful customer journey. Building trust within a team or teams also empowers people to ingenuity when facing challenges. Like in the Squid Game, when Cho Sang-woo asks the team to take a step forward and risk their lives everyone follows his stead. This can only be achieved through building trust and synergy.

But building trust is not just limited to teams. You have to strengthen customer relationships as well. Nurture trust with clients with transparent conversations. The game masters laid down everything on their table for the candidates and this included a way out if necessary. This strategy allowed them to retain their candidates with ease. 

You can read more about retaining clients on the verge of canceling.

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Agility and adaptability

agility and adaptability

Customer Success is a relatively new space. It is evolving at a rapid pace and if Squid Game teaches you anything, it is to be unrelenting in the face of a challenge. Survival of the fittest holds true for the market as well. Customer Success professionals need to always be up to date with the evolving space. They need to be agile and look for out-of-box solutions when cornered. Like when the protagonist uses licking the candy in the “Dalgona candy” game. Squid Game teaches building upon other people’s mistakes and doing better. This can very well be a key lesson for Customer Success professionals.

Keep the Surprise Element: do not enclose all the features at once

The organizers did not disclose all the information, the pattern of the game, and all the games at once, they kept it as a surprise for the players which kept the grip of the audience as well as the players in the game. If in the very beginning you spill out all the services you provide then the customer would feel that there is no further progress happening rather if you keep some of the features hidden in the beginning that you can later call an up-gradation which might as well lead to upselling, retention or renewals. Not only this,  showing all features in one go might overwhelm the customer and confuse him further. It’s always prudent to first showcase only those features that solve the use case for which the customer has brought the product. And when the customer gets to see early value s/he develops confidence and trust in you and that is the time to show other features to nudge him for an upgrade.

Advocacy is the Best Form of Marketing

Customer Success is about inciting loyalty in customers. Going a little meta over here and stepping out of the show to their marketing strategy. Squid Game did little to no paid advertising. So what got it to the point of being the most-watched TV show in Netflix’s history? Peer-to-peer recommendations. Word of mouth travels fast and true. The customer’s voice can be heard from peaks. Everyone started watching Squid Game because everybody else was talking about it. If you get your customers to talk about you as Customer Success professionals, you would have done an excellent job. People trust peer-to-peer recommendations and it piques their interest as well. Advocacy is a skill to master for CS professionals. 

Read our Ultimate Guide to Advocacy for more.


In the game there was only one person who made it till the end, the rest of all, we can say churned out. The Customer Success Managers need to do the exact opposite of that and try to retain as many customers as they can, reducing the churn rate. Squid Game offers valuable insights but it is all about putting things to practice. Learn how CustomerSuccessBox does the hard work with AI tech and intuitive interface. We are like the game masters hooking you in now. 

Jahan Patel is a content marketer at CustomerSuccessBox. He loves languages and loves writing about growth & businesses. On his off time, you can find him sitting in a cozy cafe reading a book.