So, Here’s the Thing About Journey Mapping

By: Ellen Falci Loeshelle

June 6, 2017

Clarabridge Analytics
Clarabridge Engage
Customer Experience
Customer Journey
Customer Journey Mapping

It’s still the rage. Marketing departments in dimly lit offices everywhere are either beginning to see the value in mapping the customer journey or have a beautifully designed one collecting dust on a shared drive. Some call it a Customer Journey Map, User Experience Journey, or Customer Decision Journey. Regardless of what name sticks in your industry, one theme still rings true- it should be the customer’s story, based on truth and fosters compassion for consumers.

So, why do most journey maps fail?


This is the number one reason. Most teams decide they already know the customer story- so, they just make it up. Most of the story is based on how they think their business model works in the real world. Copywriters call this fiction. And while I love a good story, I’d hate for one to be a waste of time and effort. If they’re lucky, they’ll get input from a sales rep about the one time that one thing happened (and every decision moving forward should be based on that). Please stop doing this. I know it’s fun sometimes- but you’ll be able to do it later in the process. More on that next. It’s fine to make educated guesses, and with the right data, you’ll be able to tell real stories and make better decisions.

There’s no vision

While usually one journey map is completed, it should be two-fold. With data in place, the first journey map should be developed based on the customer experience in its’ current state. The second journey map should be what the company envisions for consumers (here’s the part where you can be as fictional as you want). With these in place, assess the gaps and begin building a plan that crafts a more meaningful experience.

All talk, no action

This ties into the last point. After assessing where the current experience falls short of the ultimate goal, build a plan that allows your team to understand what needs to happen in order to create the journey your team has been dreaming of. Moving forward, your journey maps should act as guiding principles, so that every strategic decision made will be with the customer in mind.

If there’s one thing to thing you do today, download the eBook “How To Go From Journey Mapping to Strategic Journey Analytics” by Jeannie Walters. She’ll give you insights on the data you should focus on when crafting a journey map, how to eliminate blind spots and what you can improve right now to increase the quality of the feedback you’re collecting.

Denasia Pinkard, the Content Marketing Manager at Clarabridge, is responsible for the production of all content from concept to execution. With over 10 years of writing and editorial experience, her specialty lies in communicating the value of seamless customer experiences. She has a BA from Morgan State in Telecommunications, and an MA from UMUC in International Marketing Management. Follow Denasia @denxsia.