Consumer Journey

What is a customer journey map anyway?

Developing a marketing strategy today is harder than ever now that everyone from your favorite blogger to fortune 500 companies using marketing automation and data as fuel for engagement. Adding to the confusion is that, almost overnight everyone started talking about something called “Journey Maps”. 


Let’s start with a quick peek into the confusion by looking at a Pinterest board I’ve been curating for the past few (click here for a library of journey maps)

As you can see, there are so many hypothetical journeys a customer can take, and yet none of them actually provide a customer feedback loop to tell you if “you’re doing it right.” 

Journey Mapping For Real

Using a tool like or to complete your marketing strategy by providing a customer data feedback platform, delivers quantitative visualization of customer experiences and touchpoint attribution. 

Quantitative Analysis of Customer Experience and Journey. 

Quantitative Analysis of Customer Experience and Journey. 

Marketplace Advantage and Operational Intelligence  

When you tackle customer journeys and experience paths after creating your content and creative work, (instead of prior)  the results are measurable, your insights valuable and business intelligence thrives. 

So what’s the answer? 

A Journey Map should/will quantify the experiences of every audience,, every person, and every touchpoint at scale. 

If you are drawing diagrams that are essentially “horizontal” renditions of old fashioned sales funnels then I suggest learning more about “Experience Design”,  “User Experience” and “Human Centered Design”.  All of these topics delve into emotional and physical connections to your customer and use diagrams to help facilitate developmental conversations.  These practices are also valuable to “Service Mapping” where the goal is to decrease friction between brands and customers.


Disclaimer: I am NOT compensated or sponsored by Pointillist or Thunderhead 


Wakabayashi Insiders Guide: How consumer lifetime value works with CRM

This diagram shows you the 5 most important aspects of creating and managing customer lifetime value (CLTV). 

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Here's how you use them to be successful and what to watch out for:

1) Undecided customers:
These people are often referred to as very "top of the funnel". They may find you by search or other organic means. They are the widest audience and contain mostly unqualified leads. They are expensive to convert and represent the most difficult group work with to develop lifetime value.

2) Targeted consumers:
Big data, little data, heck...any data, can help you quickly identify patterns in your existing consumers or social media followers to create a profile or "look alike" profile that creates a smart target to start driving engagement from people who want to connect with what brands have to offer. If you're looking for a big data solution then Datalogix is a great place to start and if your looking for something a little more mainstream then FullContact is good group to consider.

3) Potential customers:
Sales teams and B2Bers like to call these folks "qualified leads". Regardless of what you call them, they are the group with the highest rate of conversion and represent the best lifetime value. The best way to find and engage with these audiences is through standardized social media acquisition programs from groups like Wayin , HelloWorld or PrizeLogic.

4) Acquired customers:
If you've done your work right and been savvy about capturing these golden opportunities, then you've paid about $1 per lead. From here you'll want to cultivate an annual calendar of smart, consistent content that is delivered in a consistent cadence and provides relentless value. Fail to do this, and you're CLTV will suffer - and so will your ROI. The best ways to manage this situation is with something from Oracle like Eloqua or Responsys Working with an alternative CRM than Oracle? Fear not. Salesforce and Exact Target teamed up to offer the same solutions. Adobe is not far behind with their integration of the old Neolane system.

5) Archived customers:
This is where it gets tricky. Remember those customers that cost $1.00 to acquire? It's now costing you $1.00 per year to carry them and you're 1MM acquired customers is feeling like a heavy weight line item on your marketing budget. That's why we have to measure the "lifetime value". Not every customer is equal and you'll want to archive any CRM/Customer records that are not producing significant annual ROI.  Simply put, you want to keep the best customers and optimize their experiences so that they purchase regularly and you want to stop spending marketing dollars on customers who don't want a relationship with you. 

Easy Right? Maybe not. If you have questions. Drop me a note. I'm happy to help.