Imagine walking into a customer meeting armed with a map that shows exactly how, when, and where your customer’s shoppers have interacted with your brand. This map would showcase the touchpoints where their shoppers have engaged with your brand on their path to purchase and help you prove the value of your branded marketing efforts to the retailer.
“Wow!” The retailer will exclaim. “I had no idea your brand was doing so much to engage with our shoppers. I can see evidence they are looking for your brand when they come to our stores.”
Isn’t that the dream, fresh produce marketers?!
Creating a Map of Your Shoppers’ Journey
This is all possible through customer or shopper journey maps. These “maps” show a visualization of the individual steps and interactions a customer or shopper takes to interact with your brand along their path to purchase. Taking the time to map out this journey serves a few purposes:
- First, seeing a visual representation of how many different touchpoints a shopper interacts with over time serves as “proof” for both you and your leadership team that having a variety of marketing assets in a variety of places is worthwhile and effective when it comes to engaging shoppers.
- Second, this map may help you identify any gaps in content that you aren’t providing your shoppers, or even identify content you are providing that simply isn’t working to engage shoppers in coming back.
- Finally and perhaps most importantly, this map is an incredibly powerful tool to take to a sales meeting with a customer when seeking to validate your brand’s value and demonstrate how your investment in marketing will benefit the retailer in their partnership with you and your products.
Take a look at this real example of a customer journey map for a fresh produce brand. We’ve removed references to their exact content to keep the brand anonymous, but this map of a shopper who regularly interacts with the brand along the path to purchase made for a great addition to their conversations with retailers.
So just how do you start creating a map like this? Well, the truth is that it is quite a significant undertaking and first requires a few investments from a time and software perspective to reasonably bring to life. Here’s an overview of what you will need:
- A Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system or software to store and track shopper contacts and their movements on your website. We recommend Hubspot. This is a significant financial investment, but one that will transform your company’s marketing and allow you to take it to new heights.
- Content, content, and more content. You can’t fully map your shopper’s journey without offering them a variety of content to interact with throughout your website and promoted on your social media channels or through various consumer-facing platforms or emails.
- Time. Simply put, you cannot build a shopper database overnight, but there are ways to speed the process up. Hosting sweepstakes and giveaways is one of the quickest ways to pull shoppers into your database. In fact, blog subscriptions and sweepstakes are the two most common ways shoppers enter the databases of our clients. But once they are in, and as you can see in the example above, it takes time (months or even years) for the shoppers to travel through multiple touchpoints along the path to purchase.
So who is ready to start mapping? Above all, first, you need to make sure you have a CRM, a way to collect data/survey shoppers, and are positioning your brand to better reach consumers. If you are ready to take things to this level for your brand and on behalf of your sales, give us a shout and we can help you put together a content plan and strategy to make it happen.