The only true thing in the world is that it is change and that is a constant. We live and die by that constant. We started with the measurement of our actions without context, because that was what technology allow us. With the development of new technology came the Customer journey. We could now set our measurements into a path called the customer journey. Again, the world is changing, technology as emerged, and customers have changed based on that technology. We now had to see beyond due to the downfall of Customer journey. Customers, technology and the dynamic world has changed beyond what customer journey can deliver and was used for. So, what is next? And what should be our next level?
- The customer journey
The Customer journey still has its place in the world, but what place is that? Customer journey is still a great way too present you customer understanding to your board or directors. You do not have to be a marketeer to understand it. So do not put it away just yet.
The quick note on what is the customer journey is a profiling of the customers actions and touch-points with the buying process and key information on what, how and where the customer is affected.
The downfall is the opinion of many and the core of the downfall is the complexity of the customer journey and the rise of new and better technologies.
This is the very basic level a company needs to work on today but will loose if you do not moving on.
- The value journey
What happens after the customer journey? Now companies had to set focus on creating value and engagement for the customer. The journey and the touch point fell away and was replaces with content and communication. Every interaction with the customer now had to be designed for maximum value and engagement. The touchpoint or the how-to the touch point became less important. We started to measure on KPIs that supports engagement and value instead of sales and conversation. The long-term strategy became more important than the short-term goal. The connection and loyalty were in focus and how-to build on this.
The quick note on what is the value journey is a profiling of value and engagement within the buying process and key information on what, how and where the value and engagement is affected.
The Customer journey is the foundation in that view, that you need to have a basic understanding about your customer before value and engagement can created.
This is the second level of customer journey. Still you need to up your game !
- The experience journey
We are now creating value and engagement, but like anything else in this world, it is changing. Remember those days where you were fighting to increase engagement and wondering how-to create value and relevance for your customers? The world just got a little harder to live in as a brand, pure-player, retail, e-tail or anything else. We now had to design the experience journey, value and engagement is no long enough for the consumer.
We are now at a breaking point for most companies, just because they still have not invested in the technology or the people to drive this. To come and execute on this level requires true data structure, customer understanding, Customer value and engagement and investments.
The experience journey is a designed process and thinking. It is about making your consumers experience about what it means to be you and the community that your brand brings to the customer. It is taking value and engagement to a psychology level. It is about connection with the basic understanding of your customers at a subconscious level and making it the natural choice for your customer without thinking about it.
The rise of experience brings you challenges for companies, and it has set its mark on business already. We are starting to see E-commerce managers/CDOs being replaced by CXOs. The experience has come, are you ready to design and execute the experience journey? Is your data ready to handle experience and not touchpoints? Do you still do research, or do you need to start doing it again? Data will not drive experience; it needs to be combined with research. Experience is a prediction game.
This is the third level of customer understanding. This is the new standard for what customers expect. They expect an experience not a sale. But still your need to up your game!
- The personalized journey
We are already starting to see the rise of personalizing and with the rise of AI it will only grow more. The most innovative companies have already started to address this issue: how to personalize the customer journey beyond the experience making every journey unique. But what do it mean to have a personalized journey? It means we are now pushing technology to a breaking point; can we deliver on this as a company and what kind of investment will this take from us. Personalized journey means we know more about the consumer then them would like us to. We will no long personalized based on similar customers behavior but only on that specific customers behavior and needs. The personalizing is a need of data overload and new data models to handle every customer as its own data model. Research on customer means we need to connect closer with the customer. We need to collect information about the consumer that is not behavior, but psychology and physical appearance in order to become personalized in our actions.
This is the fourth level of journeys, will this be the last? Or where to go next
- The intimate journey
The question is what is beyond being personal? It must be intimate but at what point will the customer allow us to be that? That barrier is already being broken down when it comes to hardware in our home and bodies. We have our phone following our lives or our washing machine telling us when we are out of
detergent or our refrigerator telling us what is in it and what we need. The barrier is being broken down, now it is just a matter of time before companies finds a way of connection this data points with a sales point.
We are already intimate with our products, so when do the intimate journey begin?
Anders Holmberg Lange is the Co-Founder of Entername, a company with the core belief that strategy should be simple, understandable and evolving. Designing 360 digital campaigns and leading selected clients from digital transformation to digital excellence in Marketing, business and sales.
Anders has been working with major global brands the last 15 years, taking them from digital transformation to digital strategy to digital excellence and delivering double digits growth rates across the board. He worked in industries like fashion, banking, entertainment and for leisure companies. No matter there were fortune 500 companies or startups, Anders was always building around a gamification approach creating win-win strategies.