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The brand experience journey: A new model for consumer marketing

  1. The Experience Journey: A New Model for Consumer Marketing By Jack Morton Worldwide
  2. New realities, new journeys / 3 Defining the experience journey / 5 3 Brands getting experience right / 7 Mapping experience journeys / 11 Learn more / 13 /2The Experience Journey What’s inside
  3. /3The Experience Journey New realities, new journeys Craig Millon Like all of us, marketers need maps. For marketers, the most fundamental journey to track is the one customers go through to purchase their products. Maps help marketers set strategy and priorities against this journey. How else would they know when and how to invest in order to create the right moments in time and the right relationships over time – to drive sales, to inspire referrals and to earn re-purchase? Across industries, consumer journeys have changed radically in recent years. There are many more brand choices and infinitely more sources of information about them. There are new ways to seek out and share recommendations. And – picture a shopper using a mobile phone to scan a bar code and comparison shop a toothbrush – consumers are empowered in ways that couldn’t have been imagined a generation ago. With consumers’ journeys so radically different, so too are the models marketers use to map them. Fig. 1 McKinsey’s 2009 “Consumer Decision Journey” Moment of purchase Initial consideration set Trigger Information gathering, shopping Ongoing exposure Active evaluation Postpurchase experience Loyalty loop 3. Ultimately, the consumer selects a brand at the moment of purchase 2. Consumers add or subtract brands as they evaluate what they want 1. The consumer considers an initial set of brands, based on brand perceptions and exposure to recent touch points 4. After purchasing a product or service, the consumer builds expectations based on experience to inform the next decision journey Second Moment of Truth (Experience) First Moment of Truth (Shelf) Stimulus Which becomes the next person’s ZMOT Fig. 2 Google’s 2011 “Zero Moment of Truth”
  4. Stimulus Consideration Purchase Use SHARING PATH LOYALTY LOOP Time CompetitiveSet Fig. 3 Jack Morton’s 2013 “Experience Journey” /4The Experience Journey people get closer to purchase. Google took this last implication further with its “zero moment of truth” model (fig. 2), which emphasizes the extent to which consumers’ active information- gathering has grown in scope and influence in recent years. As I said, maps help marketers set strategy and priorities against consumer journeys. Both McKinsey’s and Google’s models showed marketers that they needed to change: for example, by spending less on above the line advertising and more on search, shopper marketing, customer experience design and programs that generate referrals and word of mouth. I’m indebted, as all of us at Jack Morton are, to McKinsey’s and Google’s thinking. But as a brand experience agency, we have a different (but complementary) view of how things work, which builds on their models: it’s called the experience journey (fig. 3). Back when I was being trained as a marketer, the “purchase funnel” reigned as the assumed manner in which consumers moved to purchase. Consumers were thought to move from being aware of several brands with a sector to a smaller group of brands they’d consider once real shopping started. The goal of marketers was to move the consumer logically down the funnel to become the one chosen brand at the end. Re-purchase and recommendations were tacked on at the end, but were assumed to work with similar linearity. New consumer journey models – especially those put forth by McKinsey in 2009 and Google in 2011 – have destroyed this once set-in-stone approach. As McKinsey’s research-based report proved , consumers don’t move logically and inexorably in one direction, but rather in a layered loop, with postpurchase experiences informing future decision journeys (fig. 1). Rather than limiting choices as they commence shopping, people actually add brands to their consideration set. And rather than being passively led down the funnel by company- driven marketing, consumers rely more on active information-seeking about brands; company- driven marketing becomes less influential as 1 2
  5. /5The Experience Journey Defining the experience journey their experience journey depending on their particular circumstances. • The experience journey puts even more emphasis on the variability of any consumer journey circa 2013. There is no singular consumer journey; there are infinite and multidirectional consumer journeys. All of this is an accurate reflection, we believe, of the more competitive landscape and complex media environment in which we all now live – with the added layer of experience as the differentiator that wins consumers’ consideration, commitment and word of mouth. In the experience journey model, brands win at moments in time and moments over time – by creating rich, technology-enhanced brand experiences that keep consumers engaged by the brand throughout the journey. These experiences extend as the threads that keep consumers connected from stimulus to consideration, purchase and use. Research proves out that experiences define brands throughout consumer journeys. Based on the input of consumers surveyed in 2011 , we know that the vast majority will only recommend brands based on experience – and that just as many expect brands to do “something special” (like an experience) to even get their attention (fig. 4). Like the McKinsey and Google models, the experience journey begins with a stimulus and moves through consideration, purchase and use – but there are key differences. Most importantly, experience is the continuous thread linking the journey itself. That’s a fundamental difference, built on the strong belief that it is compelling, differentiating experiences that keep consumers engaged with brands these days, and less subject to distraction by the competition. In addition: • We also see a “loyalty loop” cycle around re- purchase (which requires brands to invest in their after-purchase interactions and customer service as potential strengths). • We extend referral (both giving and seeking out) from isolated moments to a continuous path of sharing across the whole experience journey. Sharing your experience with a brand is not something that happens at the end of the process but throughout the process. • We map time across the X axis and competitors across the Y axis – allowing us to help clients across different industries to map Fig. 4 Experience is the owned media that earns media Source: Jack Morton research, 2012. Global Average US Brazil China India 76 79 74 78 78 75 65 71 84 78 I only advocate brands when I have had great personal experiences with them With all the media and information available to me, if a brand wants to get my attention it has to do something special 3
  6. /6The Experience Journey Experience is also there defining the journey when we ask consumers, “What are the most important influences on your purchase decisions?” Among the top five influences cited by consumers, referrals fueled by experience (recommendations sought from or given by friends and family) are ranked number one and number two; number five is the in-store experience itself (fig. 5). Not surprisingly, experience is important to brands – but there’s a gap between how good corporate leaders think their experiences are and how their customer rate their actual performance. Bain & Company surveyed customers of 362 companies. “Only 8% of them described their experiences as superior, yet 80% of the companies surveyed believe that the experience they have been providing is indeed superior.” From an 80% assumed superiority to 8% actual delivery represents a big gap – and still another reason for marketers to embrace the experience journey model. 4 Fig. 5 Most valuable sources of information for purchase Source: Jack Morton research, 2012. Global Average US Brazil China India 56 65 55 58 44 55 61 53 61 43 Friends and family from whom you sought opinions Friends and family who volunteered their opinion 47 61 41 48 37 47 55 45 45 43 44 55 46 41 35 Research you conducted on the internet Product reviews by experts (eg.g, in magazines, on Web) In-store experience or media
  7. /7The Experience Journey 3 Brands getting experience right The value to brands in architecting consumer experience journeys is clear. The brands that succeed now and in the future will be brands that build relationships at moments in time and moments over time on the basis of experience. We call these experience brands. They deliver more than a product or service – they offer the shared value of an experience. Recent research shows that people are more likely to consider experience brands over the competition. They are more likely to recommend them. And they will even pay more for them . Experience brands consider and plan for the total consumer experience – from stimulus to consideration to purchase and use. They don’t view tactics in isolation but rather as part of journey that is organized and based on macro consumer insights, macro technology changes and the belief in a “new journey for a new age”. So what are some examples of experience brands? Here are three of our favorites : 5 6
  8. /8The Experience Journey Coke. 1 Ranked by many as the world’s most valuable brand, in recent years Coke’s marketers have led a brand renaissance that’s built around a simple, inspiring promise – happiness – which is played out across the experience journey. Is it possible not to love its award- winning experiences – such as its Happiness Machines, or its partnership with Google to re-create its landmark 1970s “I’d Like to Buy the World a Coke” anthem in a new, digital form? Also noteworthy: its “content 2020” content marketing strategy includes not just a compelling vision (“liquid and linked”) but also clear priorities about the allocation of resources and priorities.
  9. /9The Experience Journey GoPro. 2 Experience brands understand that brands are verbs and that doing is ultimately more impressive than telling. That’s so true of GoPro: the brand for wearable and helmet cameras solicits content from customers doing what its products celebrate – having adventures – and uses that content as its marketing. Rather than telling people about what they can do with its products, it shows them what using their products could look like – and it extends this strategy across the experience journey. GoPro is an exemplar of search – an area that many brands neglect.
  10. /10The Experience Journey Red Bull. 3 The most successful experience brands start off by finding unmet consumer needs and then innovating experiences and products to fill those needs. Red Bull did that almost 30 years ago by innovating the energy drink category itself. Its promise – Red Bull Gives You Wings – is a higher-level aspiration that’s borne out at every conceivable touchpoint along its experience journey: from the annual Flug Tag to Red Bull Racing and other sponsorships, from one-off stunts like the Red Bull Stratos mission to the edge of space to the brand’s consistently significant investment in experience- based marketing.
  11. /11The Experience Journey Mapping experience journeys Brands don’t become experience brands by accident: they get there by planning. Planning isn’t just figuring out what to do when. It’s about the context and connection across brand experiences. If those experiences exist in isolation, consumers can become confused and fall through the cracks. That’s why we work with clients to concept, plan and execute brand experiences within the experience journey framework. What that looks like varies dramatically by sector and situation. For example, an experience journey for a fast food brand (fig. 6) has a much shorter time frame, fewer competing brands and a smaller incidence of sharing than an experience journey in the automotive industry (fig. 7). Stimulus 4 Brands Consideration 10 Brands Use SHARING PATH LOYALTY LOOP Time - 1 Year CompetitiveSet Fig. 7 Experience Journey: automotive industry $ Stimulus 5 Brands Consideration 2 Brands Use SHARING PATH LOYALTY LOOP Time - 1 Hour CompetitiveSet Fig. 6 Experience Journey: fast food industry $
  12. /12Best Experience Brands 2013 That’s the vision; getting there will require a great experience journey map and strong agency partners to travel that journey with them. Craig Millon is SVP of Digital & Shopper Marketing at Jack Morton Worldwide. We’ve developed the work of mapping the experience journey into a four-step process, for which we use a simple schema that maps the experience journey alongside consumer disciplines (such as live, retail and digital). The four steps are: 1. Audit each tactical activity and its primary purpose(s) and intended result(s). 2. Review and map each tactical activity, associated purpose and intended result. 3. Identify the communication gaps / breaks along the purchase journey. These can be tactical gaps (offer), messaging gaps (consistency) or discipline gaps (digital). 4. Propose solutions that assist consumers in a seamless Experience Journey. What does the output look like? That depends on the brand, of course. But the goal is always the same: leverage the power of experience thinking to build relationships with consumers and claim an advantage in the market. In the experience journey model, brands win at moments in time and moments over time – by creating rich, technology-enhanced brand experiences that keep consumers engaged by the brand. Footnotes 1. David Court, Dave Elzinga, Susan Mulder and Ole Jorgen Vetvik, The Consumer Decision Journey, McKinsey & Company, 2009. 2. Jim Lecinski, ZMOT: Winning The Zero Moment of Truth, Google, 2009. 3. Josh McCall and Liz Bigham, New Realities 2012: Consumer Research from Jack Morton Worldwide, Jack Morton Worldwide, 2012. 4. Christopher Meyer and Andre Schwager, “Understanding Customer Experience,” Harvard Business Review, February 2007. 5. Josh McCall and Liz Bigham, Best Experience Brands 2013: A Global Study by Jack Morton Worldwide, Jack Morton Worldwide, 2013. 6. Full disclosure: none of these brands are clients. We’re just fans of their discipline as experience brands.
  13. /13The C-Suite Project Contact: North America: Liz Bigham, EVP, Brand Marketing E: / T: +1-212-401-7212 UK: Richard Vincent, SVP, Head of Consumer E: / T: +44 208 735 2000 Asia: Ben Taylor, President, APAC E: / T: +86 10 8569 9718 Australia: Helen Graney, SVP, Managing Director E: / T: +612 8231 4565 Read our blog at Follow us on twitter @jackmorton Visit us online at About Jack Morton Jack Morton Worldwide is a global brand experience agency with offices on five continents. Our agency culture promotes breakthrough ideas about how experiences connect brands and people – in-person, online, at retail and through the power of digital and word of mouth. We work with both BtoC and BtoB clients to create powerful and effective experiences that engage customers and consumers, launch products, align employees and build strong experience brands. Ranked at the top of our field, we earned over 50 awards for creativity, execution and effectiveness last year. Jack Morton is part of the Interpublic Group of Companies, Inc. (NYSE: IPG). © Jack Morton Worldwide 2013 Talk to Jack To read our earlier white papers, visit our Slideshare channel at WHITE PAPERS JACK