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How to map your customers' journey across digital assets?

Authored by Dhiraj Khare, Alliance Manager, Global Partners, Liferay India.

Customer journey and customer experiences are the modern day buzzwords, but if you look back historically business has been successful only on three major aspects: “Price”, “Quality” and “Customer Intimacy” hence it’s not a new thing to say that customer success is key.

However, technology has played a major role in changing how we interact with our customers, and that’s simply because the amount of time any user spends over any digital touchpoint such as Mobile Phone, Tablet, Laptop and even your smart TV, is massive and this brings a huge potential for technology vendors like Liferay to invest in cutting edge Web Content Management System, Personalization and Content Analytics revolves around various Omnichannel touchpoints.

Customer Journey Cycle: We need to understand the most common customer journey cycle in a context to any industry would involve three steps:

Research: 

When a customer does not know what & where he wants to buy/transact, usually a vendor try to attract customers via various ways and means such as;

Search Engine Optimization using  Hyper Personalised Content AutoTagging (making sure every image and document which is available in the system gets auto tagged with most relevant keyword) so that it appears in the search of the right user at the right time.

One customer comes to the site, same personalisation feature can start serving them most relevant content at the home screen and even if there are any personalized offers and plan. Personalisation post customer lands to your site can be achieved via Web Campaigning tools like  Audience Targeting etc.

In order to make sure that customer does the right thing on the site and to provide a more engaging experience to the customer companies implement a ‘chat bot’ which should get well integrated with a knowledge management system and multiple other subsystems to bring the best of its potential.

Transact: Most marketing experts only worry about bringing the leads to the system but a large portion of lead conversion also depends upon giving a seamless experience to the customers during the transaction and post transaction. Some of the important aspects which helps making this possible are as follows:

A detailed comparison of products and services along with user feedback and instant answers to the queries. Most companies have attempted this for tangible products like (electronics, clothes etc), but very few have attempted this in service and intangible products like (insurance policy, loan, legal, accounting consulting, travel packages etc)

A huge amount of content analytics is required to enhance the buying experience of a customer during the transaction phase such as, ensure the ‘order form’  is asking just the right amount of information needed. Also, if the flow of that information is correct or not? etc.
Businesses should avoid asking details which they think they should not be using in immediate transaction.

Service & Re-engaged:
Most analyst believes that it takes 7 times more money to acquire a new customer compared to retaining & upselling an existing customer”
Above statement puts huge amount of responsibilities on the shoulders of us as technology vendors to provide the right set of tools which can help businesses achieve customer retainership. Some of the classic use case:

Self Service and Engaging Customer portals, which allows customers to perform most of the things ranging from ‘warrenty check’ to booking a service appointment and buying/exchanging/renewing with a new product or extended warranty  etc.

A better customer intimacy always result in retained customers and growing revenue. Businesses can also run loyalty program via customer/ self service portal and offer various personalised services and also gain control on Unified view on Customer Journey.  


Let me  try to illustrate the above concept with some real life examples and also how we have helped businesses  in mapping this customer journey across various digital assets as below:

Banking: As we all have seen a drastic shift form Branch Banking to Banking at your doorstep, most banks have invested heavily in outbound calling exercise, but if we ask us as an individual we would realise that close 99% efforts made on outbound calling is a waste of time and effort and have a very poor hit rates. However, on the contract all bound call centres are heavily burdened with call traffic and adds to growing customer frustration. At Liferay we have helped one of our customers (a leading private bank in south India) in solving this problem by putting a perfect mix of “Web Personalization (serving the right content to the right customer)” Chat Bot (to help answer the most obvious questions) and Integration (with backend CRM system, so that every needy customer of bank gets a call back form call centre in less than 2 hours).

Insurance: Selling something to a customer is just 1st step towards customer journey, however creating the right avenue for a customer to continuously keep engaging should be the goal of any digital marketers, this doesn’t always mean to invest in very expensive software.
Similar to Banks, insurance business is also transforming form agent based business to digital business, this  transforming from seller’s market to a buyer's market gave a lot of power and flexibility of comparing multiple products across various digital channel is with customer now which have put a huge pressure on margins, but helped in increasing the size of pie hence successful insurance companies also have happy agents because digital game them power to run low margin but high volume business. Things that has improved are:

  • Highly interactive and personalise agent portals will allow same agent to serve multiple customers and helps in his productivity.
  • Better user experience and interactive forms and capability of uploading the documents  reduced a lot of time in policy generation and claim settlement part.
  • With increasing usage of health bands and watches, insurance companies are implementing their IoT strategies linked with customer’s health profile. Eg. offering policy premium discount or higher coverage if the historical activity data shared by customer is crossing a certain threshold.
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