Customer journey mapping makes marketing more effective

The purchase funnel always lacked insight. It was an oversimplification of the customer’s journey that just captured the key phases of the customer life cycle. It didn’t provide insight into the consumer’s mindset or where they were in life that could be used to move them from one phase to the next. Customer journey mapping addresses this flaw by identifying the questions the consumer has, the hurdles they face, the actions they are taking and the touchpoints that will be most influential­ — providing marketers with the insight needed as well as a roadmap for moving the consumer through the journey.

In today’s digital marketing ecosystem, it is one of the most critical aspects of planning and is referenced on a regular basis to ensure the effectiveness of marketing efforts and to inform ongoing optimization. Here are some tips for getting the most out of customer journey mapping.

Step 1: Whom to focus on

Every brand has multiple types of customers. They could be in different life stages, have different attitudes, be pursuing different goals, etc. There are any number of things about them that will affect their needs and how you should interact with them through their customer journeys, so step one is to identify these nuances and fully develop their personas. Resources that can be helpful for this phase: segmentation, social listening, A&U, household panel.

At GKV we use a tool called Meltwater for social listening, arguably the best software for the job. It allows us to stay on top of digital strategy and marketing performance for our clients with a robust collection of data, including share of voice, sentiment scores, trending themes, social reach and more. We use our learnings from Meltwater to help us move potential customers through all stages of the customer journey.

And you’d be surprised how quickly and inexpensively you can gain consumer insights by fielding a quick 10-question survey through Survey Monkey. We do it all the time for current clients and prospects to gain valuable insights with a couple hundred bucks in less than 24 hours. We use these surveys to help reveal information that guides the customer journey; for example, specific connections between a brand and its customers, key moments that spark an impression for the consumer, etc.

Step 2: What to focus on

Once the personas have been developed, go one by one and conduct additional research to understand the questions these groups are asking, the hurdles they may need to overcome, the actions they are most likely to take and the touchpoints you believe will be most influential in moving them through their journey. The more you can learn about your audience, the more tailored and informed your messaging and content strategy can be­, thereby ensuring you are placed in their consideration set. Resources that can be helpful for this phase: Google analytics, SEO and SEM data, social analytics, call center.

Step 3: What to do with it

Take what you’ve learned and use it to develop your strategies; identify your key opportunity areas, touchpoints and content needed; set your KPIs for measuring performance; and include it all in one integrated brief. In the briefing meeting, be sure to point out and discuss the key moments along the customer journey where consumers are demonstrating their intent; these are the most compelling opportunities.

Step 4: How it will help your team and make your marketing more effective

All of this research fosters needed discussion about prospects and customers from multiple perspectives (messaging, media, social, website, sales, ecommerce) and gets everyone on the same, integrated page. You will be most effective when everyone is clear on what the goals and objectives are for each phase of the customer’s journey, what specifically they are doing and what role they play in the overarching process, ultimately creating a roadmap for the entire team to execute and measure against.

This is how you can use customer journey mapping to make your marketing more relevant and effective.

Ready to get started with customer journey mapping?

Dan Collins

SVP, Chief Strategy Officer

Start the conversation today and find out what GKV can do for your brand.

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