Reinventing the wheel of your customer journey can be costly. And unnecessary if you haven’t planned it well.
However, thinking about strategic customer journey enhancements with human phycology in mind will help you secure glowing reviews and happy customers.
What do I mean when I say human psychology?
Have you ever had surgery? It’s likely that when you were under general anesthesia you didn’t feel a thing or weren’t actually conscious for the majority of the procedure.
I bet when you woke up you were confused, groggy, and high on painkillers.
And it’s all fine and well until excruciating pain kicks in when the drug finally wears off.
If I were to ask you a week after surgery how the whole thing went you’d likely say it wasn’t all that pleasant, not because of pain that you felt DURING (you were out for most of it). However, because of all that discomfort felt afterward – your brain remembers that this was an unpleasant experience – and so, therefore…it was.
Nobel Prize-winning psychologist Daniel Kahneman’s research into memory and his peak-end theory can go a long way to helping us understand this further , especially when it comes to how customers in particular remember and how memories inform decisions. The peak-end theory proposes that:
“…people judge an experience largely based on how they felt at its peak (i.e., its most intense point) and its end, rather than based on the total sum or average of every moment of the experience.”
This theory can really help us put in place customer journey improvements that are both strategically placed and cost-effective.
Let me help break down the steps on how to evaluate your current customer journey, overhaul it, and help make your clients want to keep on coming bakc for more (and raving fans during the process!)
Identify and Improve the RIGHT areas of your customer experience.
This theory can help us ask the right questions to seek to better understand our customers based on thier memories of thier experience with our brands and business. It’s important to make sure you’re analysising your customer epxiernece from all angles. Have you spent time really understanding how your customer experience your brand? Do you know if there any differences between the way they experience it vs the way that they recall it?
In order to help us answer these questions, undertaking a customer journey analysis can be immensely beneficial to help you to identify areas of improvement in your customer journey workflow.
Now, these Customer journey maps are a compact visualisation of an end-to-end customer experience, and they can take many forms (infographics, illustrations, diagrams – all that good stuff). These maps serve to illustrate all the places and touchpoints customers come into contact with your brand and they help you look at your brand, product, and processes through the customer’s lens so that you can visualize their literal journey through the funnel.
Depending on the business, product or service which is being mapped, best practices and design may vary. This means you have a great deal of freedom to explore and be creative – I personally love using Lucidchart to map out my customer journey workflows!
The wheel doesn’t need reinventing (most of the time) especially if you already have a strategy in place. However, mapping out your as-is customer journey workflow will help you see it from the customer perspective and identify areas that could be open to improvement.
Find ways to remove these friction areas and this will remove the customers possibility of being left with a poor remembering experience of their time working with you.
Add in High impact touch points
Now that you have removed the friction areas within your customer journey as a result of better understanding it from their perspective, you can add in personalised touches that will deliver high impact results. This will help your clients feel seen and heard throughout their experience fo working with you! Gift sending is a great example of this!
Sending your clients a welcome gift is a great way of giving them a fantastic first experience of your company. Likewise, a parting gift such as a thank you note can go along way to giving them a last good memory of your and your business. These peak areas of their customer journey experience with your brand are now enhanced to support their positive lasting impression.
This is just part of what we call experience psychology, which is critical to understand when improving your customer experience to drive $$$.
It is essential that you realise your customers have the ‘experiencing self’ and the ‘remembering self’ and they choose between memories of experience, so reducing the friction and increasing the opportunity to delight them can weigh in your favour!
Overall, a customer journey is based on systems that work!
And, what more, you don’t have to do all of this manually.
Set up automations that trigger delivery and fulfillment with just one click. Onboarding is one of those repetitive tasks that you really don’t need to be doing over and over again.
Once customer journey key points have been identified, it is easy to build in an automated system that will not necessarily remove a personal connection but rather build up an organised flow. Building in-house automations within your customer journey will make the customer feel guided throughout the process and is a great way to boost satisfaction.
Sprinkle personalisation to have the perfect mix of automation and human intervention.