What is a Customer Journey Map - Alpha Solutions

Customer journey maps help you plot out and visualize where and how people interact with your brand so you can create experiences that convert.

9.1.20

BY BILL LEVY

Customer journey maps document not only your current customer touchpoints, creating them also prompts you to analyze their effectiveness individually and collectively as part of the arc of your brand story.

A customer journey map:


  • Provides an inventory of your customer touchpoints

  • Connects the dots between touchpoints for better optimization

  • Exposes gaps in your marketing strategy

  • Visualizes how pieces of your customer experience connect to one another


In short, a customer journey map is an excellent tool for analyzing and optimizing individual touchpoints as well as the connections among those touchpoints.


Use a customer journey map exercise to inventory your brand’s touchpoints

Quick! List every single one of your customer touchpoints!


If you missed one or two, you wouldn’t be alone. As more channels and technologies emerge by what seems like the minute, it’s easy to get a little lost in all that complexity. Even if you’re marketing for a smaller company, you might not have every touchpoint at the top of your mind 24/7. 


A customer journey map can be a living inventory of your touchpoints, providing a reference for how each one engages with visitors and conveys its part of your brand story. As an inventory, it supports content strategy, digital asset management, and other interconnected teams and technologies. This helps ensure your messaging stays consistent across touchpoints so your customers encounter as little friction as possible while moving among them -- which supports conversion.


Connect the dots between customer touchpoints so you can optimize them more effectively

As with a content strategy, your customer journey map provides insights into how each of your customer touchpoints builds on or extends the others to create a winning customer experience. This is especially useful if your goal is to refine your customer experience either by offering additional touchpoints or deepening the touchpoints you already have to help your customers get what they want from your brand.


Looking at your analytics data in conjunction with your journey map will highlight the paths many people take to each of your touchpoints and expose potential opportunities for pointing them to touchpoints that are doing well -- or point your teams to places where the path to conversion isn’t as smooth as it might be.


And this can reveal where you might have gaps in your marketing strategy.


Identify any gaps in your marketing strategy, once you know what touchpoints you have and how they relate

Your marketing focus will often shift, depending on a multitude of variables: seasons, new products, changes in the market, and so on. As your focus shifts, or new avenues for engaging with your audience open up, having a journey map to refer to as you plan ensures you’re optimizing the path to conversion along the touchpoints that will best serve your customers.


For example, your customer service reps are excellent at answering questions and helping customers resolve user issues with your widget. But it feels like you could be getting more out of that touchpoint, so your team brainstorms ideas like follow-up emails with offers, remarketing strategies for upgrades, and so on.


And, if you want to go one step further, visualizing your customer journey map lets team members see, at a glance, what they have to work with and whether or not there are still gaps to fill.


Create a visualization for “at-a-glance” guidance and easy communication

Spreadsheets often contain a lot of detail, sometimes making them less-than-optimal communication tools -- especially when you’re presenting to stakeholders or leadership-level audiences who don’t need to be down in the weeds with you. 


Creating a visual representation of your customer journey map not only gives you talking points, but it also helps people from outside of your day-to-day work to get a better sense for the effort you’re investing in your company’s marketing. An attractive graphic holds people’s interest, sparks questions and discussion, and -- as that old saying goes -- “speaks a thousand words.”

Bill Levy - Alpha Solutions

BILL LEVY

Director of Interactive Services