Micro journeys: amplifying impact and scale through technology

by Natasha Stefos

by Justine Tabone

In our last blog, we introduced the concept of micro journeys and outlined a six-step process for operationalizing them to realise customer and commercial value. In this post, we dive deeper into the area of technology and provide practical watchouts when it comes to ensuring your technology is set up to execute well. Here are three strategic insights that can lead to scalable, tech-enabled micro journeys in your organisation:

1. Micro journey success requires timely execution

Most micro journeys cover a range of channels including human and automated actions. Lets take a simple example of responding to a customer enquiry. Depending on the nature of the enquiry, time will be of the essence as nothing is more annoying than having a query fall into a black hole of non-response. In order to reply to the customer in a timely manner, you need your systems to be talking to each other and providing real time data.

So, in this example, you would first look to automate any communications that can provide transparency to the customer on what stage their query is up to, such as acknowledging receipt of contact and later confirmation of resolution.

Once the basics are in place, then look to automate the handovers between teams who will action the response and enable the relevant team member with a single view of customer data. Providing detail on their interaction history will allow the enquiry to be resolved immediately or escalated, whilst also supporting the sales or service person to personalize the conversation.

Ultimately, this means you need your key systems to be integrated or have the right API triggers in place to bring immediacy to data access – to the right person at the right time. With these processes increasingly driven by automation, capacity is freed to scale and operationalize more micro journeys over time.

 
2. Micro journeys must be dynamic, not static

Often the introduction of micro journeys will involve the establishment of new digital channels that an organisation may not have experience using yet. The temptation will be to set and forget a particular journey, perhaps to a known universe of customers.

However, the real value of micro journeys emerges through constant testing and optimisation of the channels, content and digital / human experiences being delivered. Establishing performance metrics across emails, subject lines, landing pages, content and sales activity – to mention a few – allows for adoption of new channels to be tracked.  

These insights can be looped back into your segmentation approach to dynamically identify new segments, inform which audiences to invest in and which to suppress (if not proving effective) – ultimately providing greater return on investment and stakeholder support.

For example, consider a webinar experience. By measuring and tracking engagement with content in the lead up to the event, participation during the session and receptiveness to follow up activity, you can understand where the drop off is happening. If customers have not responded to emails about the event and have opted into SMS notifications, you can dynamically course correct the campaign activity to achieve the desired outcome.

3. Amplify impact through Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Artificial Intelligence can be extremely powerful for either optimising existing micro journeys based on behavioural triggers, or alternately creating new journeys once enough data has been captured. AI works by learning how customers want to be communicated with and serving them relevant and personalised content and experiences.

Lets go back to the enquiry example, where response time often determines whether the customer has a good, mediocre or bad experience. In this instance, AI can be leveraged to prompt service teams with a suggested reply based on previous inquiries and subsequent responses, reducing the average handle time.

For organisations looking to go from good to great, AI can be taken even further to enhance the customer experience through functionality such as chat bots, deliver tailored pricing and offers, and move from reactive to predictive insights to surface products and services that may not have been on the customers radar.

Activating micro journeys quickly is an increasingly important imperative for many organisations looking to improve their efficiency and customer impact. Whilst everyone’s experience with standing them up in the technology will be different, there are a few common principles that will help you maximise value. By integrating your systems, you will be able to leverage personalization at scale and in a timely manner. From there, you must ensure there are mechanisms in place to trigger the next micro journey action, and track the performance of each touchpoint (both internally and through third party platforms). Finally, by embedding AI for continual optimisation and behavioural insights – you’re then able to deliver the seamless and relevant experience that your customers want and need.