Summary: Do you know how your customers engage with your product, service, or brand? We offer reasons why every business needs a customer journey map.
You might be asking why your business needs a customer journey map. Results from the 5th edition of the Salesforce State of the Connected Customer report show that:
- 56% of consumers want a personalized experience
- 85% of consumers want consistent interactions across departments
How can a customer journey map help you? Your customers have thoughts, feelings, and needs while interacting with your brand. That is why they choose to engage with you and your brand in different ways. To understand what consumers want and how they experience your business, you need to understand the ways they engage with your company. Then you can give them what they need.
What Is a Customer Journey Map, and What Can You Achieve With It?
A journey map is a visual representation of the customer experience and divides the consumer’s journey through your business into key stages and touchpoints. It investigates specific behaviors, feelings, and intentions at every point with the assistance of a persona – a fictional representation of the type of customer that uses your services or products and engages with your brand.
There are several types of journey maps, but you can create a unique map to investigate a specific section of the customer experience or adapt it for your industry.
What will you learn from the different journey maps? Let’s discuss four types:
Current State. These maps visualize the emotions, thoughts, and actions your customers currently experience at each stage of the journey with your business. This type of journey map is ideal if you want to improve the customer experience quickly.
Day in the Life. These journey maps provide a broader view of your customer’s daily lives and real-life pain points. It visualizes the thoughts, emotions, and actions of your consumers, even when they don’t engage with your company. If you want to identify unmet customer needs and explore new market development strategies, this is the journey map you should use.
Future State. Want to visualize the actions, emotions, and thoughts customers will experience in future interactions with your company? This is the map you want. It is ideal when you want to clarify your vision and set strategic goals.
Service Blueprint. The biggest message from the Salesforce State of the Connected Customer report is that customers want consistent interactions across the different departments of a business. Whether they’re dealing with support, sales, or management, they want to feel like they’re talking to a single business voice.
How do you identify those clients that need attention? Use a simplified version of one of the journey map types mentioned above, then add the departments that deliver the experience. It is a good choice when you want to identify the service challenges for current customer journeys or the steps you need to take to achieve the ideal future customer journey.
What Benefits Do You Get from a Customer Journey Map?
Do you want to improve customer retention and grow brand loyalty resulting in increased sales? Again, looking at Salesforce’s State of the Connected Customer report, we know more than half of all consumers want a personalized experience. The understanding you gain through customer journey mapping can guide your content marketing strategy, including customizing a consumer experience or communications based on identified desires.
Personalize cross-channel marketing messages, meet the customer where they are in the journey, and your brand, service, or product will appear in front of your customer in a cohesive manner tailored to their needs.
How Often Should You Update Your Journey Maps?
Customer journey maps are a work in progress and should be reviewed quarterly, depending on your business needs. Do new customer journey maps identify changes in the customer journey and what caused them? The new product you created after identifying an unmet need through the “Day in the Life” customer journey map might have changed the customer experience, for example. Remember to include all departments that impact the customer on their journey.
There is a reason why WSI is the world’s largest and most experienced digital marketing agency network. We are experts at what we do. Do you want someone to help you with your content marketing strategy and customer journey maps? Contact a WSI Consultant today.
About the Author
Rick spent 20 years in the insurance industry in finance, primarily developing reporting platforms for B & C stakeholders. His ability to speak to consumers of data (managers and analysts) and translate their needs to programmers led him to start his own digital marketing agency in 2004 to develop data driven solutions for business owners.
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