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Understanding what a customer sees and experiences on their journey with your business is arguably the biggest challenge marketers face. When analyzing their behavior, we may wonder why customers leave tabs open for hours just to close them or why they take several steps to get from point A to B when it should only take one. But with the right tools, taking hold of this key information is possible, propelling your business forward with a greater understanding of your customers and therefore an opportunity to optimize your customer experience.

Customer journey map

A customer journey map is a visual representation of the customer journey and their experience with your brand. It visually illustrates the story of how a customer moves through each phase of interaction with your business. The customer journey map could start from anywhere, depending on the customer's goal. For example, it can reflect a timeline of events that may begin with making a purchase or joining a loyalty program. Every business will have a different map, so it's important to remember that yours should be directly tailored to suit your unique customers. The best way to tailor your customer journey map is to talk to the customers directly! Putting in the time and researching your target audience will give you a better understanding of how to make decisions and give you insights into touchpoints that you can then use to improve and personalize the customer experience. Gathering this customer data can be done in any of the following ways: conducting interviews, emailing a survey to existing users, and even monitoring discussions about your company that occur on social media. 

Customer journey mapping

Customer journey mapping is the process of creating the customer journey map and mapping out the actions they take to achieve a goal. It outlines the touchpoints of consumer interactions focusing on crucial events, customer motivations, and problem points within their experience. 

The touchpoints include websites, social channels, interactions with the marketing and sales team. Using the example of a millennial buyer persona, their user journey may begin with an awareness of a product on social platforms, with research conducted on the mobile version of your site, and finally, then transitioning to a desktop computer to make a purchase. It's important to detail the customer experience at each touchpoint, describing what feelings they are experiencing and looking into what frustrations there might be. Starting by setting goals on what you want to achieve through mapping will help give your team direction and allow you to identify specific stages that you want to improve. 

How it can help your business?

Customer journey mapping is a strategic approach to better understanding the customer experience so that your business can optimize the experience and understand their expectations at all touchpoints. Through mapping, businesses, small or large, can deliver a personalized experience that satisfies the demand for an omnichannel approach. With 84% of consumers feeling that being treated like a human rather than a number is crucial to winning their business, creating a personalized experience across all touchpoints will help you win more customers over. The omnichannel approach means that marketers can target one prospect across multiple touchpoints. For example, a customer who browses a product on a website can be retargeted with a social media ad later on. When you understand your customers, you are better able to tailor the customer experience to their needs. For example, an effective customer journey map benchmarks the customer experience desired by your customers against what they actually receive.

How to create a customer journey map efficiently?

There's no doubt that mapping out all the different customer journeys can be pretty time-consuming. That's why we recommend using marketing automation software like Pardot. Automation software makes it simple and easy to create customized customer journeys and automate marketing actions.   

As an experienced and established marketing consulting firm, our team have worked with hundreds of clients to help develop marketing strategies that catapult their business growth. For expert advice on creating a customer mapping journey, contact us today and book a consultation so that your business can gain essential insights to help you understand your customers. 

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