Most customers don’t come into the car buying process knowing exactly what they want. In fact, many customers find the experience overwhelming and nerve-wracking.
Easing those fears and delivering a personalized and convenient experience starts with knowing where customers are on their journey.
That’s where detailed customer journey mapping comes in to help brands understand the unique needs of their customers and provide relevant, empathetic service. Beth Mach, Chief Consumer Officer at TrueCar Inc., says it’s crucial to understand the highs and lows of the entire customer experience.
Mach says journey mapping is always crucial, especially in complex or emotional purchases like a car. TrueCar aims to create a feeling of safety during a large and complex transaction, but that safety and trust requires understanding customers and knowing where they are in the journey.
TrueCar starts its journey mapping process by learning about its customers and their motivations. What areas create friction? How do customers navigate their day? When and how can a brand best communicate with them? Understanding the ins and outs of customers’ preferences and their lives helps brands know exactly where they are and help them on their way.
Journey mapping also involves the product itself. Creating a frictionless digital platform builds confidence with customers because they don’t have to wander aimlessly or jump through hoops to find the right car. That trust and confidence between customers and the brand allows TrueCar to build stronger relationships.
To best serve its wide variety of customers, ranging from timid first-time car buyers to car experts, TrueCar builds out its targets into multiple personas. The company realizes that every customer is unique in their expectations. Having a basis of understanding of who they are and what makes sense for their life and business creates empowering and supportive interactions. Someone who has already researched cars is further along their customer journey and will have different needs and expectations than someone who is just starting the process or who needs to complete a transaction that same day.
TrueCar’s Customer Experience
Mach says it’s crucial to meet people where they are in the process, either positive or negative, and help them move forward. The goal is always to create a rewarding experience they’ll tell their friends about.
But journey mapping isn’t a one-time process. TrueCar’s customer service leaders provide weekly overviews about what’s happening with customers, which gives leaders and all employees a solid understanding of the friction points and opportunities. Ensuring everyone has access to information to make decisions and understand where people are empowers employees and creates a supportive and personal experience.
Every customer has unique situations and needs. Getting to the root of those expectations and building an end-to-end customer journey map helps brands jump in and serve customers, no matter where they are on the path.