The concept of the “customer journey” to facilitate our understanding of how to create exceptional customer experiences is nothing new. After all, how can we build a business without some knowledge of the interaction between products and services and the customers who purchase them?
What is a customer journey map exactly? It is a graph that describes the whole journey of a user by representing the different touchpoints that show the customers interaction with the brand.
According to recent research by McKinsey, two-thirds of the decisions customers make are influenced by the quality of their experiences all along their journey. And increasingly we prefer to receive personalized messages with the help of beacons instead of speaking to a real person just because it is faster. The experience is key to awareness, conversion, loyalty and so much more.
The best thing about customer journey map is that it puts customers first, describing and illustrating the touchpoints in the experience that a brand wants to provide, but the quality of the experience that customers actually perceive. It tells the story of the customer’s experience: from initial contact, through the process of engagement and into a long-term relationship.
If someone is exploring or researching, but not quite ready to purchase, they want useful information and maybe even inspiration, not the hard sell. According to Google, 66% of smartphone users turn to their smartphones to learn more about something they saw while watching a TV commercial?
We also know it’s never been more challenging or expensive to acquire a new customer. That’s why at nventive we work with our clients to ensure they have a clear understanding of where their customers are today and where they want them to ultimately be on their journey –beyond just mobile, but the large landscape.
Too many organizations generate customer journey maps that are primarily “inward focused” – meaning; they were heavily skewed towards how the company understood the customer journey.
Today the users have far greater control of how and when they interact with a brand. Creating a wider view of the larger context, the micro and macro touch points and opportunities to engage more deeply with the customer is critical. That’s why we need to visualize journey maps that start with the perspective of the customer.
We may have the “ideal” process from a company perspective. But a customer focused journey mapping exercise can help discover how customers truly go about the buying decision process.
After all, our goal at nventive is to work with clients to help them build smart relationships with their shoppers, customers, and even employees, which are mutually beneficial. It may or may not be necessary to involve actual customers in these sessions or workshops. But, to get a genuinely inclusive and honest view of the customer journey – taking time and conducting surveys, holding customer interviews, and other activities to capture the voice of the customer can provide critical insights into building a journey map.
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