Following the Map of the Customer Journey to Business Success
Those who are in marketing know just how elusive the customer can be. Customers are out there buying products all the time. Yet their behavior can seem completely unpredictable.
Marketing is all about making customers’ behavior predictable. That’s why it’s such a difficult skill to master.
In the past, all marketers had to go on were sales totals or customer surveys to see how well they were doing. However, today they also have the ability to mine data. This is because there’s now a large amount of quantitative data available to them, in addition to their old tools.
But putting together all of that data in a way that makes sense is the hard part. Luckily, a marketing tool called the “customer journey map” is coming into vogue. This new tool solves some of the marketing mysteries that have bedeviled companies for years.
A customer journey map is usually presented as a graphic with detailed information, but it can also take many other forms. Essentially, however, it shows marketers how well they are doing with customers at every step of the customer’s journey.
These customer journey maps are one of MDG Advertising’s five marketing trends to watch in the new year. Further, they figure to become a relatively common practice in the near future. Here are some of the reasons they’re so effective.
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Every Step Counts
For the most part, customers don’t make decisions without forethought and research. There is usually a process by which they first look to find out about companies that sell the product they’re seeking. That’s because they want to compare and contrast.
At some point, they’ll make a purchase. Following that, they may need to follow up with the company if there’s a problem with the product. The company that communicates effectively with the customer at every point in that journey will likely create loyalty from their customers. That’s why an effectively rendered journey map is necessary.
What the Map Should Include
The map should be composed of information that relates to each particular point on the journey. That information can be data-driven, which would make it quantitative. Conversely, it could refer to surveys or direct communication with customers, making it qualitative. The more detailed the information, the more accurate the map will be. An accurate map will show exactly why a customer did or did not complete a purchase.
Strengths and Weaknesses
If the map is done correctly, it will show the areas where the company is connecting with customers well and serving their needs adequately. More importantly, it will show where there is a drop-off or a break in the chain of communications.
With this information in hand, the marketing team can decide whether the deficiency is damaging enough to budget for changes in that particular area. By following customers through every possible decision point and potential obstacle, the marketing team can make truly informed decisions.
The important thing is that the marketer constructs the map with the customer’s point of view in mind. If a marketer can do that effectively, they’ll have a much better chance of making sales.