As we talk with clients who are planning to complete a website redesign, utilize an email marketing automation campaign, or integrate marketing and sales for seniors, we often ask them to take a step back and review the senior customer journey before jumping into their project. This way, they can make sure that their plan is aligned with their data before getting started.
This request often elicits surprised looks from around the table. The fact is that many firms have not considered how data and the customer journey can be integrated to bring more relevance to marketing efforts and uncover hidden opportunities for real engagement.
What we discover most often is that the process that many marketing departments use to make decisions is flawed. Mapping the consumer journey with data has one goal: to understand how well the current online and offline marketing system aligns with how the consumer really makes decisions. The subjective approach to marketing may sometimes produce results, but with a solid data driven approach, results can be predicted more accurately, and better decisions can be made in the process.
Win #1: A “Real” understanding of the customer journey.
Understanding the customer journey from the consumer standpoint requires objective analysis. The only way to do this well is to use data to understand their journey from their perspective. With data, you can see what keywords, behaviors, and actions customers are likely to take in the journey.
Having strong data mapping for all the decisions a customer makes allows you to view the frequency and urgency of each decision. This way, you can weight your focus and budget appropriately. You can begin to identify drivers and prioritize certain components as you apply the right marketing to the right channel. Being able to see a “real” journey that’s backed by data will revolutionize how your marketing plan works.
Most successful senior marketers have a deep understanding of their customer journey.
Most marketers miss the journey decision points. After we have worked with them to develop a customer journey map using data, we find that, in many cases, around 60% of the experience had not been mapped. Mapping it uncovers real opportunities for growth in the company through marketing.
Win #2: Missed Opportunities
When behaviors are mapped against a data-based journey, you can start to identify gaps and opportunities in the journey that you might either be missing or focusing too much attention on with your marketing. For example, if you have a lot of information about a medical procedure itself but miss a stage in the journey where the customer researches doctor bios, you’ve missed an opportunity to support the journey in a meaningful way. In the same case, you might be budgeting too much information on sell sheets about your MRI machine when personalized care is more important in the journey.
Win #3: Killing the HIPPO
We’ve all been there. The highest paid person’s opinion (HIPPO) tends to lead the conversation and give direction – but all too often the same person tends to rarely take fault when their insights don’t pan out. This highlights another reason why objective data analysis must be done around the customer journey. To save face for the HIPPO and the company, data must drive all decisions. The biggest problem, hands down, is that companies don’t deeply understand who their target customer is and how that customer processes buying decisions before they begin a marketing effort.
Take Charge of Your Customer Journey
There is no better time than right now to make data a priority in your marketing and customer journey analysis. The process will reap great rewards and make you the hero of the boardroom. If you’d like to have a no-pressure conversation about our services and how we can help you build this journey map, connect with us for a meaningful conversation.