With customer journey mapping it is important to understand how customers experience their interactions with your company. Using a standard questionnaire and measuring Net Promoter Score and other customer metrics just isn’t enough. Qualitative interviews give insight into the range of emotion that customers experience in the customer journey and where your strengths and weaknesses are from the customers’ perspective. For the right customer experience, it’s important to understand how customers felt, and how you made them feel.

For this reason, it’s valuable to use qualitative interviews for customer insights at the start of a customer journey mapping exercise. In this blog we explain why this is important.

In-depth interviews brings emotion into focus

When you want to tackle customer journey mapping professionally and reliably, with the right results, it is advisable to conduct in-depth interviews with customers. This is best done face-to-face but other options for personalized interaction and dialogue are also an option.

Start the conversation with the customer and discuss all parts of the customer journey. The most important thing is to ensure you have an in-depth discussion about what customers experience. People give you the best insights into how they experience their relationship with your company when you let the customer tell their story from their point-of-view. You want to gain a broad and deep picture of the relationship and to gather insights that are relevant to their emotional experience, reading between the lines to find out exactly how they experience their relationship with you. Understanding what motivates them and what emotions are at play will help you to understand what lies beneath certain customer behaviors.

Asking the right questions is important

It’s important to ask customers the right questions. You want to create a dialogue with a customer so that he or she trusts you and is willing to share their experiences with you as an interviewer. Interviewing is a skill and should not be underestimated in ensuring that you gather meaningful and actionable insights. For example, a customer can say he is frustrated by a specific part of the customer journey and qualify this immediately afterwards as ‘not really important’. This statement is important. It’s an invitation to go deeper, to understand what is really behind the statement. It’s important to read these signals correctly. You need to put the accent on the feedback (frustrated) and not the judgment (not important), and to follow this up with open-ended questions to allow the customer to elaborate.

Discovering the customer’s emotions

In-depth interviews are invaluable to gain insight into the emotional customer experience. Gaining these insights helps you to get to the bottom of the customer’s motivation and how they behave in their relationship with you. How they use online and offline channels. What they expect when they contact you. What your strengths and weaknesses are. What opportunities exist and where you may run the risk of losing the customer’s business. Qualitative research helps you understand this playing field.

To improve customer contact

Customer Journey mapping is a powerful tool to help you align with your customers and their expectations. Curious to learn more about how customer journey mapping can help you improve your customer relationships and the quality of your customer interactions. We can help. Contact us for more information.

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