We recognize that our choices, as individuals and as consumers, are shaped by emotions. As marketers, we're involved in having a better experience for people making decisions about our goods. We are turning to analysis to do that. Our Questions: How do our goods improve the lives of people? What challenges are people facing next to the issues addressed by our products? What is the sense in which people use our goods and how can we help meet them where they are? And who are the individuals that use our products? What are their everyday lives like, and where do they fit in with our product?
The center of consumer and user research is questions like these. But it's too easy to skip around Can we study the demographics of our clients? Will we study their shopping patterns, their preferences, their perception of our brand versus those on the market? When there are so many angles from which to approach, where do we even start to ask questions?
I also use a method called the Customer Decision Journey to map the experience of the consumer end to end, how did they become interested in products such as ours, where does our product fit in their lives, and how well does our product help them accomplish a target once they have it? We may draw a map of the highest and lowest points by conducting research around the whole experience of using our product and understanding such experiences as phases or levels. The lowest points provide us with a better path for change.
What’s the Customer Decision Journey?
McKinsey published an article in 2009 calling on marketers to re-evaluate how the buyer path is described and the Consumer Decision Journey was developed. McKinsey said to avoid thinking of the choices of the buyers as a linear funnel that ends in a purchase, and instead see these choices as the result of encounters that they really are with various networks.
An example of this multi-channel experience: standing in the makeup aisle of a store (physical location visit) while reading feedback on a smartphone (competitor research) and half-listening to a makeup ad over the speakers of the store (traditional advertising) will not be unusual for today's consumers. The Customer Decision Journey will chronicle the journey of this buyer, from deciding they needed makeup, to standing in the aisle & reading reviews, to buying it. And doing research at each of those levels will help us understand how to help the consumer make a decision quicker, how to save her time in the aisle, and even help us target her with more relevant or personalized ads, for marketers and experience strategists alike.
Since the introduction of the Customer Journey in the McKinsey essay, its application as a system has been widespread (TripAdvisor, eBay, Google, and AirBnB are examples). In the processes of considering what they need, comparing brands against each other and promoting loyalty, brands have restructured their marketing strategy to satisfy prospects. "You can devote more time and content to the right stages by using audience insights to identify the areas that need more attention, and deliver a consumer experience that really works."
Mapping the Customer Decision Journey and the Experience
The core of a research project on the Consumer Decision Journey is also the deliverable mapping that comes from the research. We: In mapping the experience across each of the stages traveled by a client, we:
· Investigate what the user does, believes, and feels about
· Identifying obstacles to their ultimate target and brainstorming ideas
· Map out the position of the brand to serve the customer in order to achieve their target
· Discover the best way to communicate and help the customer achieve his objective
The Importance of Research in the CDJ
The architecture of the Customer Decision Journey is not without its obstacles, however. Watch out for an all-too-common CDJ mapping mistake: Assumptions. It can happen to several managers, product managers, advertisers, or anyone who focuses on serving a client. Every day, we represent the customer; we believe we know them deeply. We know the common points of their suffering, and we know the end goals. We are making the mistake of trying to build a map of the CDJ based on what we already know.
What's the cliche that is overused? Will the concept of insanity do the same thing again and again and assume varying outcomes? This is the issue of relying on institutional awareness about the perceptions of our clients. We work on old results, and we're probably going to come up with outdated solutions to stale problems.
A Refresher: Common Marketing Research Methods to Build On
To build a timely and enlightening Consumer Decision Journey map, conducting new research is crucial. In "Should you focus on qual or quant research?" I broke down the most popular research methods in marketing. But before we can expand into a concentration on emotion studies, let's review a brief overview of those fundamental methods.
The richest insights come from a paired research approach, one that seeks both statistically relevant results to identify the position of our product on the market and a deep understanding of how our product fits into the life of a single customer.
The following outcomes and deliverables can be obtained by traditional quantitative approaches such as surveys and data analysis:
1. Segmenting the Market
2. Projections for Pricing
3. The Promoter of the Net scores
4. Ratings on customer satisfaction
5. Product launch suggestions, pricing, messaging
6. Changes in sales efforts to boost the loyalty of consumers and target consumer segments
Popular qualitative techniques such as interviews, usability assessments, focus groups, and contextual investigation may assist:
· Make human-centered decisions in the business, not just in the marketing department, resulting in a better overall customer experience.
· Understand the quantitative data background, such as why bounce rates are so high on one page on your web.
· Predict how your product or service can blend into the life of the customer and affect it.
· Understand the thoughts that your target population feels about your product or market.