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Business model design II: Customer journeys

You’ve taken the desirability dimension of your product and you want to translate it into thoughtful work on feasibility and viability. And we’re going to use the business model canvas to drive that discussion so you don’t waste a lot of time on long documents and briefs that nobody’s going to read. The next step I recommend, beyond mapping out the segment to value proposition relationships, is thinking about the customer journey. As the product manager, it’s a big part of your job. Anyway, we’ve already talked about some great tools to do that. The way I’ll frame the question here is, what’s the end-to-end customer experience?
And the place you’re going to record this on the canvas is here, customer relationships, and here in channels. Let’s talk a little bit more about what those mean. Customer relationships is the way that you’re going to touch the customer at various points in their journey. Examples are for dedicated personal service, that means that If my, if I buy my insurance from Barbara. I call her whenever I have a question or a claim or whatever and I always talk to Barbara she’s dedicated to me. Personal service means for example that I call an 800 number at All State or Geico or whatever and I talk to somebody but I don’t could be anybody its call center.
You can see some other examples here, I won’t go through them all. The question, so this is the type of relationship we have. The channel is how we deliver that relationship to the customer. You might have different channels for different parts of the journey, promotion, sales and service for example. Let’s say that we sell, we’re Maytag or Samsung and we sell washing machines. We might advertise on AdWords and SEO or maybe television and then we direct people when they want to buy it to retailers like Sears and then we use a network of authorized field contractors for when the thing breaks a year later and you need to get it fixed. This is how we map this out.
Now, when I see canvases a lot of the time, and I ask, well tell me about the customer relationships, the channels. They just put any old thing a lot of the time. And I understand. It’s not obvious what this is or why this is important when the canvas is introduced to a lot of people. A thoughtful way to do this is this customer journey that we’ve already discussed. You already have hopefully started to apply. I like this AIDAOR framework. Use whatever you want. I recommend starting with storyboards. How does our customer get engaged? For instance, Helen sees this LinkedIn ad.
How do we keep that attention and translate it into real genuine interest by connecting with a problem that they really have, and talking about a proposition that we think is going to be compelling to them. What desire is propelling them through this thing and what action do they need to take to actually buy or sign up, or whatever? And how do we, what relationships, through what channels do we need to minimize this action? Because that is very, very important. How do we make sure the customers are getting successfully on boarded? Do we have the right relationships and channels in place to do that? Or could we do it more effectively? Do we need to do it better?
Do we need to re-segment our customers on the basis of their on boarding needs? I mean maybe that a small scrappy start up team needs a different onboarding channel than a big huge corporation that’s going to use our product. That is possible. So, do think about your segments relative to your customer journeys. And the business model canvas is a great place to kind of map that out. And then finally, retention, post-sales service or whatever else happens in the customer journey as they use, buy, re-buy, renew our product. What relationships do we need to have, what channels can we deliver those through?
A really great tool that I love to use is a, going deeper on the journey map by taking each of these story-boarding squares and working out think, see, feel, and do for each of those steps. I won’t go through these examples in detail, but there are lots of resources where you can look at that and see examples and give it a try. This is also the feel example, the feel aspect of your journey is a great place, for instance, to kind of calibrate and test that emotional cadence that we saw on the journey map, the one with the cartesian space and the line that’s going through it. And this is what this might look like for enable quiz.
They’ve decided for large accounts, they’re going to provide dedicated personal service so a rep or account person and for others will do web self-help and chat. So there is some variation by segment. And for promotion, they’re going to use Google AdWords and content marketing on LinkedIn. So posting relevant articles and pieces on LinkedIn. And then for service, they’re going to use their internal support team and maybe hence the question mark here they may use their learning management system partners. So, people that build software that’s kind of adjacent to them.
So as a product manager, you may be working with other departments that do this stuff, the storyboard is a great place to talk about that, and how things are going, and what you’re testing. And the business model canvas is a great place to look at the larger picture of how you’re linking, desirability, viability and feasibility. This is how it might look on the canvas, and we might do something like if we subsegment this into large and small. We can show the relationship of the one to the other. That’s what’s nice about the canvas, you can layer explanations on top of it.
And it’s a really good tool to see how this stuff all hangs together without losing the attention span of your interdisciplinary collaborators who probably, if you send them a 15 page plan, they probably won’t read. This is a great thing, you can print it out and put it up on a wall. You can send it to people. In terms of getting people to really be thoughtful about how the whole business is hanging together. I think you’ll find it’s a really, really helpful tool.

In this video, Alex discusses translating the desirability dimension of your product into thoughtful work on feasibility and viability, and focusing on the customer journey. To enhance your thinking about the customer relationship, picture a product you use. Approach this product with the mindset of a customer, asking what you as the customer Thinks, Sees, Feels, and Does.

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