Customer Journey Mapping : 5 Steps to success

Customer journey mapping has become an essential exercise for organisation to undertake, with many creating Voice of the Customer (VoC) roles within the business or marketing department. The Voice of customer encompasses the process of listening to your customers, gathering and understanding customer feedback, and improve the product and customer experience. 

Customer journey mapping can help clarify the risks and opportunities in your customer strategy and business initiatives and, enable a change in the organisation’s culture.

We offer Customer Journey Mapping and Design Thinking techniques services to help our customers plan and optimise their sales & marketing strategies, improve processes or streamline business operations. 

Here’s 5 simple steps that will help you avoid some of the common pitfalls we have come across and, focus on delivering remarkable customer experience.

 

Step 1 - Enough detail

It’s easy to build a one dimensional map but finding the right compromise between easy of use and enough information to help optimise the experience is an art as much as an analytical process. 

Our recommendation would be to include these essential layers:

  1. A context introducing the customer scenario, high level goals & objectives
  2. Key phases and actions in the journey 
  3. Customers’ thoughts and feelings (at that particular step/phase or action of the journey)
  4. Level of effort required & touchpoints 
  5. Pain points & key opportunity (how the organisation might address/cure the pain)
Optionally, we found that these additional layers might also help depending on the project goal: 
  1.  Product & services (offered or that could be offered) 
  2. Technology and tools 
  3. KPIs & metrics to measure efficiency and/or experience
  4. Ownership (in improving the experience, service or product) 
 

Step 2 - Don't be too detailed

It’s a balancing act. If you try to go into too much detail you could end up with a ‘spaghetti’ journey that is difficult to read and understand. Remember, the principal aim of a customer journey map is to convey information in a way that is memorable, concise, and that can create a shared vision on how to improve the customer experience.

Step 3 - Recruit real customers

Too often we see maps that have nothing to do with how customers feel or experience the services; instead resemble service blueprints depicting complex internal processes (aimed at delivering the experience) that have little or not input from real people and real data. 

You cannot uncover the most important information required to design the experience if you don’t talk to your customers. 

Our recommended approach is to: 

  • Use existing data and internal knowledge to develop an hypothesis, then use real customers to validate it, OR
  • Recruit real customers to develop the map and hypothesis, then use the data to enhance it

Step 4 - Avoid department silos

While you cannot create a journey map that is all things to all people, a shared vision is critical in customer journey mapping, without it, agreement on how to improve the experience would never take place. Create different personas and break down the journey into digestible chunks but avoid developing maps in silos.

Step 5 - It's more than a map

No matter how rigorous the mapping procedure has been, customer journey maps are only as good as the actions they inform and the results their development and deployment drive. And, a finished map is not the end, it’s the beginning of your change. 

Customer journeys can be turned into stories and a product story map to dovetail into development processes and development project roadmaps.

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