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Map Your Customer's Journey to the Cloud

Ensuring a successful digital transformation for your customers requires proper planning and visualization to achieve top results. Certain key questions also need to be answered such as, “How and where do I start?”, “How do I build a plan for cloud migration for my application portfolio?” and “How will my organization be affected by this change?”

In today’s MPN blog entitled Map Your Customer’s Journey to the Cloud, Eduardo Kassner discusses both preparing your customers for, and the stages involved in, a successful cloud transformation.  According to Kassner, preparation involves helping your customers understand the new mindset that needs to develop during their journey. Kassner then describes the transformation itself, moving from Application Modernization, to Application Experimentation, to Migration, and finally to a complete Transformation.

How are you helping your customers migrate to the cloud? Share your process with the Microsoft Partner Community.

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Re: Map Your Customer's Journey to the Cloud

Map your customer journey.
 
1. Identify your audience.

Before you can take your customers on a meaningful journey with your brand, you have to know who they are and what their pain points are.

Framing your customer journey maps around particular buyer personas allows you to put on their shoes and walk through their experiences.  Any established facts about your audience will help you understand their behaviors and cater to their needs, wants, expectations, and preferences.

To start your customer journey maps, identify your current customers. Who do you reach now? What other audiences would you like to reach? Some of the questions to consider include:

  • What are the demographic details that unite them?
  • What is a day in their life like?

  • What are their goals and challenges, both at work and at home?

  • What do they want?

  • What frustrates or disappoints them?

  • What channels do they use to engage with businesses?

  • How do they make their buying decisions?

  • What problems can you solve for them?

  • What information are they missing that you want them to know about?

You want to understand your buyer personas in their “natural habit.” Your marketing team has likely gathered much of this information. If you are not on the marketing team, inquiring about buyer personas and discussing this issue is a great way to connect and build some bridges internally.
 

2. Define the steps.

What is the typical progression through each phase of a journey with your specific brand? Get granular and identify all of the interactions a typical customer has from pre-purchase to usage and post-purchase phases.

A typical customer progression might look something like this:

  • Defining a need

  • Searching for information online

  • Visiting a brand website

  • Exploring features and benefits

  • Comparing brands and prices

  • Making a purchase

  • Setting up/unboxing

  • Initial usage

  • Continuing usage

  • Troubleshooting

  • Needing to upgrade

  • Researching options for upgrade

  • Comparing brands and prices

  • Making a decision to stay or leave

3. List your brand’s touchpoints.

What are the physical and digital places where customers experience your brand? Each one of them are opportunities to leave a positive or negative impression of your brand.

 

Your brand may not have all of these, but common touchpoints include:

  • Google search results

  • Digital ads

  • Traditional ads: billboards, print, mailers

  • Referring links

  • Your website

  • Mobile app

  • Social media

  • Sales people

  • Stores

  • Email

  • Customer support call center

  • Payment portal

  • Review sites/directories

4. Identify the data you want to track.

To optimize your customer journey, you need intuitive and actionable data about your clients and campaigns.

  • Start by listing the customer data types you already have.This could include demographics, communication preferences, purchase history, browsing history, click-through rates, and so forth.

     

  • Circle the data types you use most.What does this data tell you? How can you use it to improve the user’s experience?

     

  • What other types of data would you like to have?Dream big. Do you know how much time customers spend on different pages of your site? How they enrolled: was it through a pay-per-click ad, social post, lead-generating email, or elsewhere?

     

  • How do you collect your data now?What methods are you using to gather information? Where is it stored?

     

  • What other modes of collecting data could you use?This can range from simple to more complex: A/B testing, interviews/direct feedback, sales conversations, progressive profiling via lead forms, consumption analysis, social listening tools, data mining.

     

It’s important for teams and departments to share the insights they have. Client-provided data should be accessible across all touchpoints, so the customer does not have to provide the same information multiple times. As your business grows, you can invest in expanding your data.


5. Think about your content.

Great customer relationships are rarely built on a hard sell. Customers want information that is genuinely interesting, helpful, and relevant to their lives. Spend some time thinking about resources you can offer and ways you can provide value to your audience.

 

  • What kind of content do you currently offer or have you used in the past? (ex. blogs, quick tips, podcasts, webinars, social media posts, newsletters, ebooks, reports, videos)

  • What content do your customers want or consume most?

  • What drives interaction with your brand? How can you expand on it?

  • Do your customers see you as a valuable and authoritative resource?

  • What types of content can help your customers discover and understand your brand better?

  • What problems can you help your customer solve?

  • What kind of content can support and inform your customers’ buying decisions?

  • What content is best for each phase of the customer journey?

Today's consumers don’t want to be sold to, but they are open to communication that adds value to their daily lives. Think about what information you can offer, when it will be most helpful to your customer, and the best channel to deliver it.


6. Choose your channels.

Your chances of connecting with customers are greatest if you meet them where they are. Knowing which platforms they use every day can guide your strategy.

 

  • What channels are you currently using? (ex. Exchange email, mobile, social, web)

  • Which perform best?

  • Are there channels where you struggle with engagement?

  • What channels would you like to use, but need help getting started?

  • How can you create meaningful moments?

  • How can you make the biggest impact?

The best customer journeys include seamless, personalized experiences across a variety of channels.