DOCUMENT Strategy Fall 2022

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CREATING EFFECTIVE AND PERSONALIZED CUSTOMER JOURNEYS By taking an honest inventory, you may find the customer is doing more work for you than you are for them

By Scott Draeger

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efore we discuss the act of creating effective and personalized customer journeys, it is important to be reminded that the term “customer journey” tells us it’s the customer’s journey. It’s not mine, not ours and not yours. With near 100% confidence, we can bet your customer didn’t start their day with a desire to fill out forms, enter in dates properly, prove they are not a robot, comply with your password standards, start over because of a typo, press “4” for support or read your 30-page contract. To understand personalized customer journeys, you

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must first understand what the customer wanted to accomplish. Most often, your customer is trying to get something done. It can be myriad things from financing that car, getting braces for their child, moving to a new home, having Wi-Fi in their new apartment or obtaining services from a local agency. That sounds simple, but it’s important to think about how your systems may be making the journey unnecessarily difficult, less successful and more expensive. If you take an honest inventory of your current customer journeys, you may start to see the customer is doing more work for you than you are

doing for them. If so, it is time to fix that mix and align processes to customer goals to improve customer relationships and remove costs from the organization. Before we get to effective customer journeys, however, let’s survey what you have in place today. Maybe you have some amazing journeys that can serve as a reference point for other teams in your organization. A journey mapping workshop is a great way to get this process started. Collect as many artifacts and as much evidence as possible to represent as many of your customers’ engagements with your brand as possible. As DOCUMENT Strategy readers, we’re going to have a lot of CCM applications, but you also need to collect common call center scripts, tweets with links to landing pages, marketing emails, sales proposals, product reviews, community forum discussions and representation from every one of your systems that create customer experiences. Now that you have some artifacts for review, you will clearly see that some experiences and touchpoints will need more improvement than others. Start with the worst you find. You probably know what they are prior to this, but you may be afraid to bring them up in office conversation. Next, find examples of your best experiences from your best journeys. Now, you clearly see some experience deltas, as you have the worst experiences and the best experiences on display. Do all your customers experience both the best and worst you have to offer? At major enterprises and smaller businesses, sadly, the best clients are often treated the worst. Your best clients often use the widest variety of your products and services, so they experience the full range of experiences you offer. They may receive each possible communication from every system, putting any of your inconsistencies in tone or production value into sharp view. Let’s look for journeys that feature large experience deltas as a starting point. Choosing that starting project and putting it on the board, let’s focus on