motiv strategies Touchpoint Mapping The Backbone Of Customer Experience Design 1 motiv strategies Touchpoint Mapping The Backbone Of Customer Experience Design As companies become increasingly multifaceted and interconnected, it is critical to gain deep insights about how customers interact with your business. Touchpoint mapping is a valuable tool that can help ensure that each connection between your company and your customer is meaningful and memorable. Picture this scenario: You have just landed after a grueling international flight. The captain disembarks before the passengers and the flight attendants are too busy to notice your exit. The flight crew’s lack of attention to the customers leaves the impression they are ambivalent about them, their jobs, or the airline for which they work. Now picture this alternate scenario: After that same flight, the flight attendants and captain stand at the plane’s exit door, thanking the passengers individually for the opportunity to serve them. Their words and smiles seem genuine and give the sense that the airline values your business greatly. Which version of this same interaction will generate more value for its airline? Seemingly small gestures like these at key touchpoints in the customer journey can make or break the customer experience with your company. According to a recent study by O’Keeffe & Company, executives estimate that the potential revenue loss for not offering a positive, consistent, and brand-relevant customer experience is 20% of their annual revenue. Understanding the emotional content and relative importance of every touchpoint your company produces is one way to protect and grow your revenue streams. The Value Of Touchpoint Mapping Touchpoint mapping and customer experience In the last several years, customer experience management has become recognized as a necessary capability for 1 Figure 1 Human-Centered Design Tools For Understanding The Customer Journey There is a wide variety of human-centered design tools that can be used to understand and improve the customer experience. Journey maps, touchpoint maps, and service blueprints are different ways to document the customer journey. While each method is unique, they are all derived from studying the customer and looking at the world from their perspective. A journey map identifies the phases customers go through to fulfill a need, both within and beyond the organization’s purview. A touchpoint map outlines the interactions between customer and an organization throughout the customer’s journey. businesses across industries, and touchpoint mapping has become an increasingly popular tool for visually representing the customer journey and managing the customer experience. increase revenues. Touchpoint mapping is an effective tool for discovering when these defining interactions occur. Specifically, touchpoint mapping can reveal: What are touchpoints? • How an organization interacts with its customers by chronicling touchpoints Motiv defines touchpoints as direct and indirect interactions customers have with a company’s product and services. The sum of these interactions form an overall customer experience. • Which touchpoints are more important than others and why It’s important to note that the lifecycle of these touchpoints extends beyond the point-of-sale or point-of-delivery, from becoming aware of the offering’s existence to after-sales support and beyond. For example, corporate Facebook pages are becoming important points of customer interaction and should be taken into consideration. • Opportunities to develop new product and service offerings to address customer needs Defining moments Companies are eager to address and capitalize on defining moments in the customer experience to differentiate their brands, boost customer loyalty, and 2 A service blueprint outlines the processes, both visible and invisible to the customer, that work to deliver a service to that customer. Touchpoint Mapping: The Backbone Of Customer Experience Design • Insights about how customers feel at critical touchpoints Overview What is a touchpoint map? A touchpoint map is a visual representation of a customer’s journey, identifying the specific interactions a customer has with an organization over a period of time. This could be the span of an hour, a week, or a few months, depending on the journey in question. motiv strategies Touchpoint mapping can describe a generic customer journey, such as a basic trip to the grocery store, or a more specific one, such as a family of four checking in for an international flight. A good touchpoint mapping project studies and integrates what customers say, think, and feel at each touchpoint through a process that includes field research and synthesis. Components of a touchpoint map While touchpoint maps can demonstrate a variety of insights about the customer’s journey, the most effective maps identify moments of truth, pain points, and pleasure points as well as the customer needs, expectations and emotions at each touchpoint. • Moments of truth are significant touchpoints in the customer journey that can make or break a customer experience and create a lasting impression of the organization in the customer’s mind. An example of a moment of truth could be talking with a customer service representative when trying to resolve an issue involving a defective product or service. • Pain points are touchpoints that are perceived to be significantly difficult or frustrating, like waiting in a long line. Interactions at pain points may inspire customers to abandon a service, to never return, and/or to recommend against it. Addressing these issues is critical to improving the customer experience. • Pleasure points are the opposite of pain points. They are touchpoints that delight customers, meeting or exceeding their expectations for the interaction. Pleasure points contribute to an excellent customer experience and can serve as inspiration for improving other touchpoints. Consumption, not production Touchpoint mapping is one of several human-centered design methods that chronicle a series of steps a customer must go through to accomplish a goal or task (see Figure 1). These methods differ from traditional operations-focused methods such as process flow mapping because they focus on the customer’s viewpoint, illustrating what experience is being consumed. Operations-minded managers often focus their attention on the process of delivering a product or service, highlighting the experience being produced. Uncovering unknown or misunderstood touchpoints is a particularly valuable outcome of touchpoint mapping. These companies risk ignoring key customer touchpoints of which they might not otherwise be aware. By examining the critical steps and stages from the customer’s perspective, managers will understand the functional and emotional needs of customers and have the opportunity to alter the customer experience for the better. Identifying blind spots When touchpoint mapping is done right, managers gather deep insights about all touchpoints across the journey from the customer’s perspective. Uncovering touchpoints that were previously unknown or misunderstood is a particularly valuable outcome of touchpoint mapping. For instance, Starbucks learned that interactions with baristas were a highlight for in-store customers, but those who used the drive-through option missed out on that experience. Furthermore, drive-through customers struggled to communicate their orders over the traditional drive-through microphones and faced long wait times, creating a painful step in the customer journey. To improve the customer experience at this specific touchpoint, Starbucks recently began testing a new ordering system that uses a video screen and 3 camera at the point of ordering, allowing customers and employees to interact. This redesigned touchpoint increases employee-customer contact and helps ensure that Starbucks meets customer expectations of friendly and personalized service, regardless of venue. Customers develop fierce loyalties to organizations like Starbucks and other customer experience exemplars because these companies consistently exceed customer expectations across touchpoints. Managers who understand the power of touchpoint mapping are able to use the methodology to intentionally deliver excellent experiences for their customers. 4 Touchpoint Mapping: The Backbone Of Customer Experience Design Conclusion Improving the customer experience requires companies to become more purposeful in their interactions with customers. Touchpoint mapping provides greater visibility into the customer experience and helps organizations better understand their interactions with customers. Savvy managers across industries are adding touchpoint mapping to their management toolboxes. They rely on this methodology to deliver useful customer insights that help achieve organizational objectives such as new product and service creation, strategy development, and ongoing customer experience management. Authors Jeneanne Rae President and CEO [email protected] Ian Campbell Director [email protected] Joy Thomas Strategist [email protected] Motiv helps leading organizations create new strategies for growth. We combine business analysis with design strategy tools to help our clients discover new opportunity spaces, develop new services and better customer experiences, and drive the change management required to enable breakthrough innovation. 811 North Royal Street Alexandria, Virginia 22314 motivstrategies.com 703.778.1051 © 2013 Motiv Strategies, LLC. All rights reserved.
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