Everything is changing - there’s lots that is on and it seems that nothing is the same anymore.

The customer is in control today - expressive, demanding & clear about his/her choices, preferences, expectations, is very specific about the products and services he/she wants. The era of customer experience & customer engagement is here -and organisations that our realising this and integrating this into their strategy & operations are benefitting, while organisations still operating in the traditional model of “let’s make a good product/service” and sell are beginning to lag behind others.

The millennials are here and consumer demographics are changing, so it’s very important to listen carefully to customers, map the customers’ needs & expectations; and iron out the experience gaps in the customer journey - both before the purchase and post sale.

Design thinking & customer journey mapping (cjm) is a powerful methodology that is now a rage globally, being used by some of the smartest organisations to identify improvement specifics - so that its product, service and delivery is fine-tuned to the consumer needs - leading to improved sales & customer loyalty.

With one of our retail clients, we recently leveraged customer journey mapping (CJM) to help the client realise that “ease of parking/access to the store“  was as important to their customers as their “ in store “ experience.

With another of our clients with largely rural customer base, it emerged that their customers were hungry for regular engagement, information and updates - relevant for their work, so they could learn modern best practices & improve their rural businesses. However they wanted the inputs in local language and wanted to engaged periodically through the year, and not just in the season, when the client organisation traditionally reached out to “sell”.  The consumer today does not like to be overtly “sold” the product.

With this client focused on rural markets, our customer journey mapping (CJM) uncovered the deep need for their farmer customers for regular engagement with regular/daily information/learnings on weather, agronomy practices, sale price information than the once a year engagement with the organisation at the time of sale of seeds - which was the operating practice hitherto.

Co-working as a office rental disruption/variant business was developed, using customer journey mapping (cjm) as also the new Amazon go retail format, which leveraged the identified need of the poor billing experience/long billing ques  to the other extreme by eliminating manual billing completely  and developed the innovative hybrid retail model “ go”  - and in the process the radically improved customer experience(CX).

Customer journey mapping (cjm) is just so very powerful! And it generates fast results even with a small sample size- i.e. a dip stick approach to identify the low hanging opportunities.

Actual delivery across various touch points and stages of customer lifecycle- end to end- needs to be mapped & made frictionless and actual customer needs captured at various customer moments, to ensure its smooth & engages the customer – all easier said than done.

Delivering a superior customer experience, is not easy - as it entails tremendous operating rigor entailing  integrating org structure &operations, people, processes and technology around the customer, with  product fulfilment & service/support/engagement  channels, into a well-oiled smooth operation - with a no siloes approach that “delivering a good experience is everyone’s responsibility”, which not just delivers a good customer experience consistently, but simultaneously  welcomes, solicits customer feedback/complaints, and leverages the same as an internal customer journey mapping & customer experience measurement & improvement process, to continuously drive product, process improvements & innovation.   Customer journey mapping (CJM) is a powerful way to begin & identify some of the low hanging fruit, before embarking on a more comprehensive journey across people, practices, processes & technology to reach the next level of customer engagement & customer satisfaction.

Recognition of this feedback & mapping the customer journey  led improvement cycle, to be as important as sales or bottom line performance - is critical today- but so much ignored ?.

We’re often amazed to see how few organisations actually do customer journey mapping (cjm) and/or objectively measure & map customer satisfaction?

The question is - which view is more important, the company’s view of the lens through which the customer is seeing - which customer journey mapping reveals?