What Is the Customer Emotional Journey?
The customer emotional journey is an extension of the customer experience map, which details each touchpoint that a customer has with a brand. While similar to a customer experience map, the customer emotional journey focuses on consumer behaviour and the emotional status of the shopper at each stage of the purchasing experience.
Companies map the customer emotional journey using a curved line, emojis, cartoons, or pictograms to represent the specific, qualitative emotional steps of the shopping process. Then, brands can analyze the stages and identify areas of frustration, delight, or neutrality to improve the overall customer experience.
How the Customer Emotional Journey Impacts Customer Service
The customer emotional journey map uses data from marketing research, customer relationship management software, and other sources to visualize each shopper’s steps while they accomplish a goal, such as purchasing a product or obtaining a service.
Companies commonly use customer experience maps to describe what a customer does during the purchasing process. However, customer emotional journey maps analyze how the user feels as they complete each task. Understanding and applying customer emotional journey mapping can impact customer service departments in several ways, including:
1. Improved Customer Experience
Research conducted by Deloitte noted that a customer’s emotions directly impact the depth of their brand loyalty. In fact, more than 40% of customers interviewed in the study said that they would recommend a brand or product based solely on emotion.
With this in mind, your customer service agents can work to connect with their customers on a human level. By tracking user data and creating detailed customer profiles, agents can provide personalized care and empathize with the shopper at each stage of the journey.
2. Streamlined Customer Service Operations
Understanding each user’s emotional status during a customer service interaction enables agents to provide adequate care and assistance. For example, if a user reaches out at the peak anxiety stage, agents can address their concerns, soothe their worries, and guide them to the next stage.
3. Higher Customer Satisfaction Ratings
Finally, taking an emotionally-driven approach to customer service forges strong connections between users and agents. Users feel seen, heard, and valued. At the same time, customer emotional journey mapping empowers agents to learn more about each customer while implementing user feedback into the overall experience.
Elements of the Customer Emotional Journey
Customer emotional journey mapping consists of six interconnected elements, as follows.
1. The Users
Companies design user personas based on shared features and attributes, such as geographic location, occupation, or marital status.
2. The Circumstances
After developing user personas, brands consider certain circumstances and the needs or expectations that accompany them to create short biographies. Consider the following:
“John is a manager who oversees a team of 15 employees. He needs to find a lightweight project management platform to help organize projects, coordinate with staff members, and streamline the operations process in order to reach his goal of reducing inefficiencies within his department.”
3. The Goals
Next, your team should consider the tasks and goals involved in the customer journey. A goal represents the highest-level action that a user must complete, such as traveling to France. A task is a lower-level action which the user must complete during a certain time or under certain constraints, such as booking a flight.
4. The Likability
Likability indicates how likely shoppers are to continue and complete the customer journey. Support agents can increase the likelihood of task completion by engaging with customers at key points during the journey and building trust.
5. The Effort
Ease indicates how easily a shopper feels that they can complete a task. If tasks feel too tricky, you can work to remove roadblocks, reduce stress, or find another solution to streamline the process.
6. The Opportunity
Finally, you have a significant opportunity to learn more about your users through customer emotional journey mapping. The insights therein enable your team to improve interactions, boost satisfaction ratings, and increase customer loyalty.
Understanding the Customer Emotional Journey in Customer Support Departments
Customer emotional journey mapping impacts more than web content creation, site development and design, and advertising. Instead, customer support teams can leverage the stages of the customer emotional journey to provide personalized, real-time assistance and convert potential leads into loyal customers.