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What Is Customer Journey Mapping And Why Is It So Important?

by Simon Spyer on Jul 8, 2014 9:00:00 AM

Successful Customer Journey Mapping

What Is Customer Journey Mapping?

Customer journey mapping should be the backbone of your CRM process but for many marketers it can feel a bit nebulous and it's difficult to know where to start.

So here's a whistlestop tour of what a customer journey is, how you can map it and why we think it's such an important thing to get right.

What's A Customer Journey?

A customer journey is the path that consumers take to becoming a customer and (hopefully) becoming a regular, recurring customer for your business.

In today's hyper-connected world it is very likely that consumers will become your customers through a multitude of touchpoints, both online and offline. 

Customer journey mapping is the process of documenting this: capturing how the journey as it is now and specifying how you want it to look in the future.


Why Is It So Important?

There has been an explosion of consumer touchpoints across their lifecycle with your brand.

From someone researching potential solutions to a given problem to a customer purchasing a new product, there are a plethora of touchpoints - some of which you will have control over (for example, the messages and navigation on your website) and others that you will have no control over (such as review sites, blogs and competitor promotions).

And even for the touchpoints that your brand can control, some may well not be within your direct control.

Having a robust map of the customer journey therefore supports your ability to close the loop on your marketing by helping you:

  • To set your marketing objectives by identifying where most value is being gained or lost and setting your strategy and business case accordingly
  • To maximise the lifetime value of a customer by only investing in acquisition channels that recruit customers who could become 'good' and mitigating the risk of customers lapsing
  • To get buy-in from the wider business to support and deliver better customer experience
  • To set the marketing KPIs that will give you direction on whether your marketing is working

Where To Start

The most important thing is to recognise that you need to map your customer journey.

Then it's a case of breaking things down so that you can keep them manageable and make a start. This could mean looking at a particular product or customer segment or even just considering part of the journey.

Have a look at the A-Z principles of customer journey mapping and some of the pitfalls to avoid.


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This post was written by Simon Spyer

Co-founder & Insight Partner at Conduit, professional insight-monger, dad, lover of all sport and Spurs.

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