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How to create an effective customer journey map
The creation of a Customer Journey Map is becoming increasingly important in many companies and can have a lasting impact on the performance of many companies' marketing.
It offers Marketing and Distribution new approaches and the review of previous activities.
Our Customer Journey PowerPoint Template you will receive at the end of this article.
What is a customer journey map anyway?
A customer journey map is, in effect, a visual description of all the touchpoints between a customer and your company, in which the marketing steps you take comprehensively accompany the customer and support them from their first awareness of the company or a product to their final purchase.
The customer journey map not only supports you in planning the various marketing measures and campaigns, but also effectively shows at which point in time the customer is touched or addressed by which measures.
Through the Evaluation of the various data, you can even evaluate and determine the effectiveness of each campaign element.
What purpose does the Customer Journey Map serve in particular?
Customer retention is becoming increasingly difficult. However, for targeted marketing across all available marketing channels, the individual measures have to be relevant for the Customers optimized and at its Needs and Wishes be adjusted.
The Customer Journey Map allows you to take the measures visual the various Touch- and Interaction points of the customer and the company and to identify and rectify errors and problems within these processes more quickly. In addition, the visual representation allows you to identify any existing Synergies faster and thus benefit from them sustainably as a company.
In addition, a customer journey map definitely serves as an argumentation strategy and can be used, for example, in budget negotiations to substantiate one's own argumentation. After all, the targeted Measures and their Targets documented comprehensively and clearly on the customer journey map.
Data: The foundation for the success of a customer journey map
The success and accuracy of a customer journey map depends primarily on the available and evaluated data within the company. The more precisely you research and process the data you need, the more effectively it can be used to determine the Buyers Persona and thus the Customer Journey use. Thereby you can rely on various data sources within your company and also to external data sources. Internal data sources include:
The social media monitoring
Statistics and evaluations in the field of e-mail marketing and newsletter marketing
Web Analytics of your website and store
Complaints about products and services
External sources can also be consulted to further improve the data situation. Here you can draw on the following sources, among others:
Direct customer surveys
Studies on customer behavior
Comparisons with competitors
All sources should not only be comprehensively evaluated, but of course also compared with each other. In this way, you can corroborate or reject theses and significantly increase the quality of the actual data. It is important that you evaluate the data comprehensively prepareso that in the next step the Buyers Persona can be defined.
Defining the Buyers Persona - the first step to success
As a rule, target groups have already been defined and subdivided accordingly. The Buyers Persona now represents a typical representative of the respective target group. Consider their desires, their priorities, their values, their goals, and many other factors in order to have the Buyers Persona act logically and consistently on the basis of this data and content.
In order to define a Buyers Persona, in addition to the relevant hard factors, you should also repeatedly try to switch into the perspective of this person and check the subsequent actions for logic. If possible, develop your own questionnaire with which you can accurately map different Buyers Persona again and again.
The questions that should be asked here are:
What job do they have?
How well do they earn in this job?
What does your typical workday look like?
What skills do they need for your job?
What kind of work environment are they in?
How big is your employer?
What are they responsible for at work?
How do they define professional success?
What have been their biggest challenges so far?
Where do they get new information from?
What magazines or blogs do they read?
What social networks do they use?
How old are they?
Are they married?
Do they have children?
What is their schooling / level of education?
How has her career been so far?
How do they like to shop?
Do they use the Internet to obtain information about products?
What were their last big purchases?
Of course, these are many questions, which are not always easy to answer. But with every question answered, the personality behind the Buyers Persona grows, which makes its Movements and Decision becomes more comprehensible.
The Steps - Touchpoints with the company
Once the buyer persona has been developed, it is now a matter of defining the Customer Journey Map. Ideally, this visualizes all the so-called steps. A step is understood to be a touchpoint, i.e. a Point of contact between Company and Buyers Persona. This can be a direct contact, but also the viewing of an advertisement by the Buyers Persona.
Consider all potential Touchpoints from the first attention of the customer to his Purchase in the company. Eliminate unimportant and inappropriate touchpoints and think carefully about what other touchpoints might be important. The Movement of the customer along this Touchpoints will be shown in the Customer Journey Map later visual illustrated.
For the collection, however, a list is sufficient for the time being. It is often helpful here to work with colleagues from the individual departments to define and cover all possible touchpoints. But that is not enough. Because each touchpoint can take place on different channels.
Define and prioritize channels
Marketing- and Distribution channels there are very many in many companies. For this reason, of course, the channel used at a touchpoint must also be taken into account.
Let's take a direct example: the touchpoint of the buyer persona is a free initial consultation by an employee of the company. Here stand alone Three different channels to choose from. Such an initial consultation can by phone have taken place at a personal meetings with an employee or also through a Online meeting.
Depending on the channel, the customer journey map may well change and shift. Through the Prioritization individual channels and, if necessary, even the Elimination individual channels for the Buyers Persona the customer journey can now be made much simpler and, above all, more straightforward. This makes it much easier to work on the customer journey map and helps to keep it lean and clear.
Analyze potential problems and complications
Now comes a very difficult part of creating the customer journey map. You have to fill the buyer persona with life and use it to check the customer journey map for errors and weaknesses. For you, this means that you have to take on the role of the buyer persona in order to find these weaknesses.
For each touchpoint, consider the Feelings and emotional reactions the persona. These feelings can give you important clues as to whether, for example, information is missing at a particular touchpoint or whether the customer is left alone or even overloaded with information at a particular point. Above all, the Need for information of the customer is from crucial importance.
So take every opportunity to be aware of the information gathering and information opportunities. The further the buyer persona progresses along the customer journey, the higher the need for information usually becomes, as a Purchase decision imminent.
Visualize the Customer Journey
Once you have gone through all the steps, the next step is to create the actual customer journey map and thus visualize the results. You can use a wide variety of media and tools to do this. If the customer journey map is only needed within your department, you can, for example, use a simple flipchart to complete the visualization as quickly as possible.
In addition, there are some helpful tools that also simplify the visualization of the customer journey map for you. Among them are:
The only important thing is that you choose a tool that is easy to use, so that the customer journey map can be easily visualized and thus deployed.
Customer Journeys can only be transferred to a limited extent
Of course, it may be tempting to apply a customer journey map that has been created once to other Subdivisions or other target groups and Buyers Persona to expand. But this can often lead to considerable problems. This is because the basic data and, above all, the basic preliminary considerations for the Buyers Persona are omitted in these steps.
As a direct consequence, the touchpoints and steps can no longer be adequately assigned to the persona. This results in initially small inconsistencies, which quickly and at an ever increasing pace lead to errors and miscalculations. In the simplest case, you no longer meet the customer and the target group with your marketing due to such a map and potential sales are lost.
In the worst case, however, you address the customer so inappropriately to the target group that he turns away from the company completely and thus can no longer be recruited as a customer. For this reason, it makes perfect sense to use a lot of Time and Energy to invest in the Customer Journey Map, as this investment will be long-term through effective and above all persistent Customer relations pays off.