Having a common language to discuss journeys can help business leaders build competency and advance journeys at their businesses. As different terms and phrases come into use it can be difficult for business leaders to navigate and understand the customer journey landscape. To bring clarity to the customer journey software space, Kitewheel has created our Customer Journey Glossary. Our goal is to demystify journeys by breaking them down into their core concepts. Journey advocates and business leaders need to know the core practices within customer journeys in order to bring them to life. Below we outline three of the key terms that will help you understand how to talk about the customer journey internally or with customer journey experts.
While we define many other terms inside the Customer Journey Glossary, understanding the background of a journey advocate is a great place to start. The journey advocate is sometimes also called a journey leader or journey champion. What sets apart the journey advocate is that they fight to advance customer journeys within your business. If you’re reading this blog, that person might be you! Any business trying to implement a customer journey program requires at least one journey advocate.
A journey advocate has several crucial qualities. As we explain in the customer journey glossary, this individual must be able to influence the senior leadership as well as the wider organization. The role is a strategic one, helping to envision the future state of the customer journey for the organization. Without a journey advocate, any journey improvements will remain as part of one-off projects. If you’re the journey advocate at your business, or you want to become the journey advocate, we strongly recommend checking out the full customer journey glossary of terms.
Journey Performance Measurement
Journey performance measurement is one of the sub-components of journey analytics. To understand how your journey is delivering results, you need to measure the right information. For journeys, these metrics serve to address use cases such as “How many times has my journey been executed?” and “How many events have I processed against my goal?” These metrics are meant to help business leaders understand the results they are getting from their journey efforts. If you’re a journey advocate, this can be particularly impactful, because you’ll be able to demonstrate the importance of future journey investments.
Journey performance measurement works best when tied to a specific use case, whether that is new customers acquired or personalizations performed. The other crucial ingredient is that these metrics should look at use cases across the customer journey being measured. For a loyalty journey this might be, “How many customers have completed onboarding in 5, 10, or 30 days?” or “How many customers who did not complete onboarding, use our loyalty App?”. By answering these questions, you can understand where your journey needs to improve going forward. For some businesses, this is the end of their journey analytics efforts, but there is another half of the puzzle called journey discovery, which you can read more about inside the full glossary.
Next Best Action
The true power of journeys lies in their ability to influence customer behavior and business results. “Next best action goes” by many alternative names, from “Best Next Action”, or “Offer Management”, to “Recommendation Engine”. No matter what you call it, a next best action is the output of decisioning about what your business should do next.
Consider a simple case where your business has determined that one demographic is more likely to purchase if they visit webpage A over webpage B. The next best action for your business would be to gently push them to visit webpage A. It might even mean dynamically redirecting them to an alternative landing page. In a more complex sequence, as you are likely to find in a real-life customer journey, this isn’t so easy. You may need to prompt them to go into the webpage through a different channel. If a certain customer is more likely to go to your website when the message is received in-app vs in email, then your decisioning should tell your systems to automate a push notification instead of an email. Decisioning is connected to several other techniques and technical capabilities within the journey, which are outlined in more detail in our full customer journey glossary.
A Common Language for Customer Journeys
The customer journey is a conversation between your brand and the customers who experience it. To better communicate with your internal teams and with trusted journey advisors, you must understand the common definitions behind customer journey terms. While the terms above give a quick introduction, we highly recommend reading our full Customer Journey Glossary. It’s full of definitions of the critical sub-components of journeys and the technical capabilities you need to execute them.