In order to achieve a successful digital transformation, it is imperative to have a comprehensive understanding of how the customer interacts with our company throughout their entire journey. This includes every touchpoint, from initial awareness to post-purchase follow-up. To gain this understanding, there is a highly effective tool called Customer Journey Mapping (CJM).
CJM allows us to analyze every interaction between our business and our potential customers from their perspective: what needs they have, what their expectations are, and how we can best meet them through the proper implementation of personalized digital solutions.
This tool allows us to visualize and analyze the customer’s experience at each stage of their journey, identifying pain points, areas of opportunity, and potential improvements. By utilizing CJM, we can gain valuable insights into the customer’s needs, preferences, and behaviors, which can then be used to inform and optimize our digital transformation strategy. Ultimately, CJM aims to create a seamless and satisfying customer experience that fosters loyalty and drives business growth.
In this article, we present four examples where the effective use of CJM was key to achieving a successful digital transformation.
Why should we map the customer journey?
Before going deeper into this topic, let’s first understand why we should map the customer journey. In summary, our ability to offer satisfactory customer experiences directly depends on our in-depth knowledge of their desires, motivations, specific interests, and so on.
In addition, without knowing each relevant point within the complete cycle, from discovery to loyalty, we would be leaving many valuable opportunities outside, such as:
1) Early identification of critical problems in the processes
2) Well-focused continuous improvement
3) Sustainable increase in average sales generated by our regular customers
4) Effective reduction of both time invested and cost associated with post-sale support
Once we know this, we can move to the next level: digital transformation through Customer Journey Mapping.
Customer Journey Mapping is the key to a successful Digital Transformation
To achieve digital transformation, it is essential to understand that it is a continuous process, not only technological but also cultural and organizational. Moreover, it involves constantly adapting to meet changing customer expectations in an increasingly competitive marketplace.
Customer Journey Mapping is helpful because it allows you to understand where there are real opportunities to improve the experience and how to do it. By knowing the pain points within the entire journey, we can identify areas where to implement digital solutions, such as chatbots or personalized communications based on data or customer actions, and how they can have the greatest possible positive impact.
4 Real examples of Customer Journey Mapping in the financial industry
Here are some cases where Customer Journey Mapping has been used for successful digital transformations:
1. Leading bank improves its omnichannel communication
One of the areas where Customer Journey Mapping can be especially useful is improving customer communication processes. A prominent example in this regard is the case of the leading bank that improved its omnichannel strategy thanks to this methodology.
First, extensive research was carried out to understand how customers interact with each available channel (email, SMS, push notifications, and WhatsApp). From there, several detailed maps were built on key segments previously detected, for example: customers who use credit cards mostly vs. debit.
It was possible to observe critical points through detailed analysis, such as redundant messages between different channels that created confusion and recurring technical problems. In addition, they were also able to identify new opportunities, such as improving the personalization of message content, thus generating more positive interaction throughout the customer journey.
Thanks to the active use of CJM combined with advanced analytics tools, and the integration with the DANAconnect platform, the bank was able to optimize its omnichannel messaging, offering communications even more tailored to the real needs and expectations of its final consumers.
This process made it possible to reduce costs and internal errors, giving greater degrees of freedom and creativity to the responsible marketing teams, always focusing directly on satisfying specific requirements found within each stage of the journey passed by the client. Likewise, customer experience measurement tools were added at critical points.
The end result was a significant improvement in the overall customer experience, which directly impacts both loyalty and brand loyalty, ensuring sustainable growth in the future.
2. Insurance company improves the claims process
This insurance company used Customer Journey Mapping to improve its internal claims handling process, thus guaranteeing an agile and satisfactory response to complex situations experienced by its end customers.
In this specific case, several work groups were carried out in brainstorming sessions, bringing together various internal areas + key external collaborators, seeking to obtain varied perspectives on the current situation.
Thanks to these combined meetings, it was possible to create different maps, focusing on each previously detected segment (for example, claims for auto accidents vs. home).
These maps enabled identifying and improving critical points, such as reducing waiting and response times, simplifying the documentation required to present a new case, and automating follow-up of the requirements. Likewise, it was possible to design an offer of chatbots and alternative communication channels to deliver and receive key documents in the claims process. On the other hand, the points where internal communication with service agents had bottlenecks were detected, and automated solutions well adapted to the internal claims process were designed.
The result was a significant improvement in the claims handling process, which directly translated into greater end-customer satisfaction and internal efficiency.
3. A Financial company reduces credit application processing time
A financial company decided to use Customer Journey Mapping to improve its internal process for handling loan/credit applications.To do this, they began by collecting data about how their users interact with the current web platform throughout the application cycle, from start to finish, starting with pre-sale.
They then created a detailed map including all the possible obstacles on this path to obtaining an effective credit offer. Some critical issues encountered were high dropout levels late in the process or even situations where applicants did not understand exactly what was happening after submitting the initial form.
Based on this, they worked together with the team to develop solutions such as:
– Improvement in the clarity and transparency of the requirements to request a loan, using automated notifications via email/SMS/WhatsApp and notifying the important advances in the following stages.
– Reduction of consignment times and processing of documents, improving the visualization of the required information.
– Incorporation of chatbots with the ability to answer frequently asked questions and deliver documentation on demand.
Additionally, a data visualization dashboard tool was introduced to monitor progress and detect bottlenecks.
Thanks to these improvements, they drastically reduced loan/credit application processing times and reduced the abandonment rate by applicants.
Additionally, thanks to the integrated use within the DANAconnect platform, they could send personalized messages (credit opportunities / financial advice) depending on the final consumer profile.
4. A pension Fund improves communication with its affiliates
A retirement fund decided to use Customer Journey Mapping to improve its experience and relationship with its affiliates. To do this, they began by collecting detailed information about user behavior and needs.
Once this step was completed, they created specific customer journey maps according to user life stages (from enrollment to retirement), identifying each interaction point throughout the process.
With this information, they were able to detect key problems such as slow response times to questions and doubts; little clarity in information delivered through different channels.
Based on these findings, a combined strategy was implemented between internal technological improvements (integrating new digital tools) and new communication processes, making active use of all the omnichannel capabilities available within the DANAconnect platform.
For example, one of the critical points was the lack of customers’ understanding of the account statements. By identifying this need, adequate communications of personalized video of the account statements were designed with the DANAconnect platform. The result was a significant improvement in customer satisfaction levels and a significant reduction in operating costs associated with customer service.
Personalized messages were also included congratulating them on their birthday, greetings, and special holiday messages that generate an emotional bond between both parties, which favors end customer loyalty.
Essential keys to implementing the Customer Journey Mapping methodology:
1- Understand the user
The first stage is to really understand who our target audience is: their specific needs, desires, and concerns regarding the product or service offered by our company.
To carry this out, we must have relevant data, such as previous research on current and potential customers and information collected through different digital tools, as well as data visualization and business intelligence analysis tools, such as graphic dashboards adapted to each process. (Talk to our experts if you’re interested in this point.)
We must always keep in mind not to stay only with our own perceptions, but to go further thanks to reliable data sources.
2- Identify critical moments
Once we understand the main motivations behind human behavior directly/indirectly related to our product or service, we should be able to identify the critical moments that affect the user experience.
A critical moment can be a problem in the sales process, processes that add unnecessary steps for the customer, steps that make our employees work unnecessarily, technical failures, or moments of friction, such as when it is necessary to change channels to finish a process. By identifying these points, we can improve them and thus provide our target audience with satisfactory experiences.
3- Creation of the map
Once both previous concepts are understood, it is time to create the map. This must gather all the data collected during the earlier stages to visualize each point where our company is present in the life of the final consumer.
It is essential to highlight that we must not only focus on positive situations but also pay special attention to previously detected problems.
4- Detailed analysis
Then we should conduct a detailed analysis of each of the points present within the CJM to assess how our internal processes impact customer interactions and what improvements can be implemented. The critical fact here is to always put yourself from the external perspective: What solution would you look for as a client in this situation?
5 – Paint the customer journey map
It is crucial to visually and clearly present the map to the work team so that everyone can understand the situation and work together to improve the user experience. In this way, improvements and adjustments can be implemented in the company’s internal processes to achieve greater customer satisfaction at each stage of the CJM. It is also important to continue to update the map and review it regularly to ensure that business processes remain relevant and effective for our users.
6 – Creation of Solutions with Minimum Viable Products
It is time then to use our preferred low code platform to build iterative prototypes thanks to a collaboration with professionals specialized in third-party integrations. This step is crucial because it speeds up the entire process and reduces market entry and value creation times.
In this sense, it is important to choose a platform that allows the rapid creation of business solutions without the need for advanced programming knowledge. Of course, we recommend DANAconnect for this.
7- Pilot tests
Finally, we come to the most awaited moment: the testing of the Minimum Viable Product or MVP. In this phase, real tests can be conducted on a specific group of end users/customers to detect those critical points in the end-user journey. The main idea here will not be to achieve complete success, but simply to obtain relevant feedback to continuously improve what has been created up to that point.
8 – Continuous improvements
It is important to keep in mind that the iteration process should continue and there is always room for improvement. This last step will always consist of working actively and iteratively with internal and external teams, seeking to constantly improve the customer experience by optimizing processes identified in the pilot tests. It is not enough to simply create this graphic model on a map. If we do not, then actively use it for real change within our organizations. The constant and iterative creation and its periodic updating are fundamental to guarantee offering products/services in accordance with the market’s current (and future) needs.
Customer Journey Map Template Example:
Objective: To understand customer’s needs and create a positive first impression.
• Advertisement: Television, Radio, Online
• Social Media
• Limited research options
• Poor customer service
Objective: To provide customers with the necessary information to make informed decisions.
• Customer Service Representatives
• Branch Visits
• Online Reviews
• Confusing and complex products
• Lack of transparency
• Limited choices
Objective: To convert customer’s interest into a purchase.
• Application Process
• Onboarding Process
• Lengthy application process
• Complicated onboarding process
Objective: To retain customers and provide excellent service.
• Monthly Statements
• Online Support
• Loyalty Programs
• Poor customer service
• Complex products and services
• Lack of clear communication
Customer Journey Mapping is, without a doubt, a vital tool for those organizations that seek to digitally transform themselves effectively. However, the practical cases presented in this article are only an appetizer of the many possibilities from the detailed analysis of the interaction with the end customer.
Through Customer Journey Mapping, we can better understand how users/customers interact and detect critical points within the entire commercial process.
Once these problems have been identified, it is possible to work actively using newly available technologies and low-code platforms for process automation and customer relations to improve the user experience continuously.
Customer Journey Mapping would not only allow us to understand what is failing but also give us precise guidelines about our future direction regarding internal processes and the products offered.
In short, those business leaders who can quickly adapt to disruptive changes, thanks to having understood what their end customers expect in advance, will always be one step ahead of competitors that are less committed to end-user service.