Posted by Stuart Walters on August 25, 2020
No one likes being sold to – especially when you’re not looking to buy. What people do like is information that adds value to them in one way or another.
Customer journey mapping helps you plot your audience’s path to purchase by offering them valuable information they need, exactly when they’re looking for it.
The user journey often revolves around some key stages, but with a growing number of digital touchpoints and changes in day-to-day living, working and purchasing patterns, the overall journey has changed. Has your marketing?
Here are six ways consumer journey mapping helps you put the right pieces together.
By mapping all the potential interactions and customer touchpoints that a person may have with a brand, marketers can design more effective, tailored customer experiences, while getting a better measurement of campaign effectiveness.
Detailed customer journey mapping also reduces the risk of overlooking individual customers, niche audiences or shoppers who have not taken the next step in the path in the sales funnel to purchase.
By putting different user groups into detailed personas at the core of your consumer maps, marketers can build empathy with their consumers – helping them to understand their mindsets, their perceptions and their motivations to better predict future behaviour.
Ultimately, the aim of any marketing strategy is to move customers from awareness and consideration towards multiple routes to purchase, improving conversion rate overall.
But every target persona requires a different approach at every stage.
A customer buying unfamiliar tech often require a lot of information before they’re happy to take the next step, while a well-versed enthusiast will move through the process a lot quicker.
Mapping enables marketers to harness a deeper understanding of people’s minds, understanding which stage each buyer is at, and what they need to move towards conversion.
This is essential to ensure the messaging is on-point and critically having it delivered to the right person, at the right time.
A good customer journey mapping template will identify which touchpoints are needed to help achieve those consumer-centric goals and customer needs, whether in-store via customer-facing staff, on the phone, via a website, customer service, or via website.
Every customer touchpoint presents an important opportunity to connect and engage with the customer’s experience both in the short term and long term, but some are more critical than others. These ‘moments of truth’ are key milestones on any customer journey.
Journey mapping is founded on real data such as website analytics, allowing marketers to continuously monitor their audiences and analyse their behaviour.
This data can be used to validate or create customer journey maps and establish how long each stage of the buying cycle takes to be successful.
By using customer insights to identify the areas that need more attention, you can dedicate more time and content to the right stages and deliver an experience that really excels!
Any gaps that emerge across the entire consumer journey, from one end of the marketing funnel to the other, can help to guide wider business decision-making.
The journey map creates a framework, urging colleagues and departments to work together to improve the company’s overall performance and identify primary audiences via the research.
This helps outline to those outside the marketing team (such as internal stakeholders and front-line staff) why certain actions have been prioritised over others.
It also helps to break down organisational silos and get the whole company focused on meeting the expectations and needs of their various target audiences.
Example: Brand research and discovery in the U.S. (Sorry it’s not UK)
To showcase how you can collect insight into each stage of the path to purchase, let’s hone in on the U.S. consumer, focusing on behaviours early on in the journey.
Here’s what findings from the Global Web Index new GWI USA data set tell us:
Knowing where people are discovering new brands, and what their go-to sources of information are to influence a purchase will influence your strategy massively; especially when it comes to content formats, positioning, and media budget allocation.
Here, we can see search engines are the dominant source of inspiration and research, with social playing a key role too.
Combining this kind of data with more in-depth behavioural and psychographic research into device usage, purchase drivers and lifestyles will help you shape the ideal journey, so users move through it seamlessly.
No matter your sector, model, audience or product offering, an effective customer journey map relies on effective research into who you’re targeting.
Only then can you create an experience that builds relationships, captures attention in all the right places, and moves your customers ever closer towards the end goal.
Placing your audience at the centre of everything you do is the best place to start – and with much deeper consumer data helping you pinpoint what’s needed, it’s easier than ever to hit the mark.
Data and information taken from the very brilliant Global Web Index Blog
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