Can you imagine how high your profit would go up if you could get into your customer’s head? Imagine knowing what problems your customers face, whether they prefer Twitter or Instagram, what their pains and needs are, what kind of ads they like, and hate.
Customer journey mapping is the closest that you can get to making this come true. You will be able to envision every touchpoint a customer has with your brand, see their pains, get to understand when the will to buy your product comes. A customer does not want to explain this to you every time, they expect you to know what they need and give them information about everything they want, without them exploring your site endlessly.
It also gives you an outside perspective on your business. When you work with your niche a lot, you sometimes forget that not everyone is a pro in this field like you are. So your business might lack explanation here and there because it seems very obvious to you, but not to a customer.
So basically, you will identify and fix the problems and inconveniences that your customers face while dealing with your brand. Moreover, it will help you to grab the attention of your customer and convert them seeing an ad into them buying what you have to offer.
Customer Journey Mapping Overview
Customer journey mapping has its basic components that build up into one complex system.
Create a Buyer Persona
Firstly, you will need a buyer persona. This component is about creating a prototype of your target customer by defining their age, gender, job, location, etc. It involves extended marketing research.
However, it does not mean that you can create one buyer persona who fits them all. If your business may attract both younger and older generations, you have to create more than one prototype. Every age group and gender has its buying habits. It includes the trigger of shopping, its time, and place. For instance, youth is likely to buy online while the older generation needs to see and to touch. Thus, those are different touchpoints and, consequently, customer journeys.
It might be a good idea to recreate the day of a buyer persona from the moment they wake up till they go to bed. You will get a better understanding of buying habits and needs. For example, full-time employees will wake up early and watch TV in the background while sipping their coffee. Freelancers will probably sleep at that time which means that it’s useless to advertise tools for remote workers at an early hour.
Identify Stages of Customer Journey
Secondly, one should identify customer stages. It is about what a customer goes through from identifying the problem that will trigger them to buy your product to retention. We will observe the stages closer a bit later.
Understand Customer’s Internations
Thirdly, you have to understand the goals that a customer is trying to achieve at each stage. To get this understanding, you need to collect data again. You can do this by launching surveys, making interviews, or sending customer service emails.
Measure the Timeframe for Completion of Each Stage
Fourthly, consider the time frame. If we put it simply, consider how much time a customer needs to complete every stage of a journey.
Try to Predict Customer’s Emotions
At last, predict the customer`s emotions. The thing is, a lot of shopping is emotional. It is either done for happiness, as a way to celebrate something or in despair, to forget the trouble. Try to predict which emotion your customer feels when they buy the product and build your marketing strategy accordingly.
So we had identified the components that the customer journey map is impossible to build without. It requires a lot of data collecting and attention but how do you use the map that you have got? How does new-acquired knowledge affect your marketing strategy? Let’s find out!
Main Stages of Customer Journey
We will get a closer look at customer stages, while every stage requires its unique type of content.
#1 Awareness Stage
At this stage, a customer faces the problem and recognizes it. Naturally, they will go and look up how to solve the issue.
Google is the most popular place to start research. So make sure that you have an add there. Yet, you must understand that this is not the stage where people look up specific products, they look for solutions. Therefore, keywords will be quite different from those who are looking for a tool that will solve the problem. For example, a customer will look for VPN ratings, not a specific VPN tool itself.
“The type of content that is used on this stage aims not to sell, but to solve the problem that a customer has. State the reason why the problem appeared and its consequences. Then showcase that your product might be one of the solutions” says the marketing director from Essay Tigers.
Soft selling is applicable there though. You may suggest a customer get a free sample.
#2 Consideration and Decision Stage
At this point, a customer found the product that, as you claim, is supposed to solve the problem. Yet, they also know that there are other products quite like this on the market. They will probably compare you with everyone else.
So here you have to explain why you are better than others. You can point out the unique qualities of yours, affordability, or efficiency. All the content and advertisement should promote your product. You do not need to explain why a customer needs that product anymore: they already know the reason. What you have to do is to tell them why they must choose you.
Consider the values that you have found out from building a customer persona. Thus, hard workers will look for time-saving features, moms will want it to be kids-friendly (safe, bright, interesting), the older generation will go for affordability.
#3 Conversion and Retention
Conversion is the time when you win the competitors and the client is looking for the buy button. So make sure that buying and payment will be a simple process for them.
Retention is an endless process. It is about what happens after a customer gets their product. At this stage, your main concern is to make them understand how to use your product and make it easy for them to maintain it.
You can use the support page and blog to answer all their questions. It is also recommended to use email to let your customers know about new releases, updates, and offers. If the customer journey was successful, they will probably come back to your business if they have got new problems in your niche.
The customer journey mapping is quite an uneasy process that requires lots of data. However, it brings so many benefits that the effort is worth it. It helps to build your marketing strategy, according to demographics which is pretty close to getting into your customer’s shoes. You can use the obtained knowledge, by helping your customer to identify your product as a solution to their problem, to make a choice in your favor among other competitors, to buy the product, and come back for more!
About the author
Grayson Wood is a talented writer and editor at Essay Tigers. Grayson is a positive and active man, a genuine leader. He is working as a freelance writer and mostly prefers writing about digital marketing, SEO, and all trending features in the Marketing niche. He is able-bodied and creative in all he is doing.