The first step in my six-step journey mapping process is Plan. This step includes all the prep work to get ready for your journey mapping workshop, including: identifying the personas for which you’ll map; the objectives, scope, outcomes, and success metrics of the map; and the workshop participants (customers) and attendees (stakeholders). It may also include customer interviews, if we haven’t already done those as part of your larger customer experience strategy work.

Next, choose which story – or the scope of the story – you’ll tell; in other words, determine which interaction or which journey you will map. Choose some Point A to Point B, a clear start point and a clear end point, for the story.

Questions I’m often asked include, “Which journeys should I map?” “Where should I start?” “How many journeys are there to map?” … as well as other variations of these questions.

Let me answer the last question first. You could potentially map hundreds of journeys. This will vary by scope of map and a lot of other factors, but suffice it to say that there are a lot more than just one or two journeys to map. That can be overwhelming, so the next important question to answer is “Where to begin?”

When selecting which journeys to map, consider the following in order to answer that question and to prioritize:

  • Low-hanging fruit: known pain points for the customer
    • Source: employees, call center, customer feedback, etc.
  • Known pain points for the business, e.g., losing customers, abandoned carts, high call volume, etc.
    • Source: touchpoint map findings, operational metrics, financial metrics, etc.
  • Important or impactful journeys for customers where brand’s performance is less than optimal
    • Source: surveys and other listening posts
  • An interaction or experience that has a clear Point A and a Point B, i.e., a clear scope or task and a clear start and end.

Eventually you’ll move on to other journeys as you uncover issues either within the ones you map as a result of the criteria above or in the course of doing business. Just know that there is no shortage of journeys to map, but you have to be smart about how you go about it. And remember this: know the tool, and embrace the process. Journey mapping is a process. I’ve come up with the six-step process I mentioned at the beginning of this post to ensure that your mapping work not only becomes the catalyst for change it’s meant to be but also delivers change in the form of redesigned and implemented customer experiences.

Hope that’s helpful. If you’re looking for more journey mapping best practices, please either reach out to me or check out my book, Customer Understanding: Three Ways to Put the “Customer” in Customer Experience (and at the Heart of Your Business). I devote the latter third of the book to journey mapping, and I’ve been told it’s a great guidebook to have on your desk to help with your customer understanding work, which obviously includes journey mapping.

Life is a matter of choices, and every choice you make makes you. -John C. Maxwell

Annette Franz, CCXP is an internationally recognized customer experience thought leader, coach, speaker, and author. She recently published her first book, Customer Understanding: Three Ways to Put the “Customer” in Customer Experience (and at the Heart of Your Business); it’s available on Amazon in both paperback and Kindle formats. Sign up for our newsletter for updates, insights, and other great content that you can use to up your CX game.

Image courtesy of Pixabay.