5 Basic Journey Mapping Principles

Image courtesy of cuppyuppycake
Image courtesy of cuppyuppycake

There are five basic principles that journey maps must adhere to. What are they?

Many years ago (and still today), journey maps were created on butcher paper with post-it notes. I’ve used this approach in the past, and it makes it difficult to share the maps, to administer updates, and to transfer knowledge. It’s also time consuming and fosters that one-and-done attitude.

Then we started using tools like Excel, PowerPoint, and Visio, which prove to be expensive, and the output is static and two-dimensional. Plus, these tools are also time consuming; you end up spending hours drawing – time that could or should be spent on strategy and execution.

Mapping tools had to evolve. Why? Because nothing was being done with the maps. People failed to see the value in this very important exercise. We are asked often, “So what? I mapped. What do I do with it now?” Maps are supposed to be that catalyst for change both in the organization and for the customer experience; without adhering to some basic principles of mapping, maps become useless. Touchpoint Dashboard was purpose built to help with those principles and to ensure maps are that catalyst for change.

What are those basic principles of mapping?

1. Maps must be collaborative/collaborated.

To break down those organizational silos and to get buy-in across the organization for the change that must happen, cross-functional collaboration is necessary. This collaboration also facilitates the assignment of owners to the steps in the journey so that we know who to call on when something is broken. And finally, customer collaboration is key; customers must validate the maps you’ve created.

2. Maps bring the journey to life.

Maps help bring the customer experience to life; in our platform, you can truly do that by adding visuals – images, audio, or video – of what the customer is doing, thinking, or feeling. You can add other file types, as well, and bring customer feedback and data into the touchpoints. Attach any artifacts to the map or to a touchpoint to add greater understanding about the customer journey.

3. Maps should allow you to analyze and prioritize touchpoints and improvement opportunities.

Touchpoint Dashboard is data driven. The more data you bring into the map, into a touchpoint, the better your ability to analyze the journey and to prioritize improvement opportunities. And the better your ability to drive change. When you can analyze your touchpoints, it’s more likely that the map will not just sit on the shelf or just hang on the wall and fail to be the catalyst it’s supposed to be.

4. Maps must be shared.

Once a map is created, it cannot just sit on the desk of the person who created it. It must be shared throughout the organization in order to tell the customer’s story, to get buy-in for the experience and its improvements, and to educate employees about the customer’s journey.

5. Maps should be updated.

As improvements are made to the experience and as the experience evolves, you need to be able to update your maps to reflect the latest current state.

When you adhere to these basic principles of mapping, you can be certain that your maps become the catalyst for change that they were meant to be!

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