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Journey Science: Critical Tools for Understanding Your Customers


Journey Science is all about leveraging data to understand your customers and tailor their experience.  Experience Maps, Journey Maps, and Service Blueprints are all critical tools for Journey Science. But how do you determine which to use for your purpose? Here’s a quick rundown:

Experience Maps are umbrellas that illustrate a broad human experience. They are not specific to a particular persona or company (even yours!). Think about things like the stages of grief, pregnancy, or even making a large purchase. Experience Maps cover a large population and how they experience human behavior. If your business was a home improvement store, this might mean building an experience map for buying a first home or becoming an empty nester.

Journey Maps are more specific. They leverage an understanding of a particular persona to define a set of time-boxed interactions. They take the perspective of the individual interacting with your company and focus on their tasks, mindsets, and experiences to help identify friction points that can be improved. For a financial services company, you might map out opening a first account.

Service Blueprints diagram the customer’s interactions and the business systems and processes involved in those interactions. They bring Journey Maps to the next level, taking them “backstage” to depict what the business is doing as the user goes through their experience. For an airline, you might build a blueprint that documents the process of dealing with a flight cancellation.

A prerequisite to all of these analyses is quality, data-driven personas. We recommend using qualitative and quantitative data to segment your audiences into discernable groups that act as touchpoints throughout any of these exercises.

Learn more about gathering qualitative data about your customers here: Qualitative Research Methods and When to Use Them.

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Lisa Sherwood

Lisa Sherwood is the Director of Audience Insights at Perficient. She uses her 20 years of experience to build approaches to content that generate results for some of the world’s largest companies in the healthcare, ecommerce, retail, and nonprofit sectors.

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