Universal Customer Journey Template: The Myth of the CX Holy Grail

by Ryan Cleek

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customer journey template
If Indiana Jones was a CX professional, rather than a temple-plundering “archaeologist,” his story would be even less satisfying than the time he and Shia LaBeouf found aliens in an ancient temple. (I will never forgive him for that.)

I say this not because customer experience is less exciting than booby-traps and bullwhips, but because there is no way in hell Dr. Jones, as a fedora-wearing CX professional, would want to skip the most valuable part of journey mapping: the process.

The magical customer journey template is a myth born of laziness

When I worked on my first journey map, I wanted to believe a magical template existed somewhere, just waiting to be found, that would show me the customer experience through an unbiased perspective and help identify specific areas for improvement.

I wanted to believe this highly-coveted journey map would illustrate delights, pain-points, and key moments throughout the customer lifecycle, because I didn’t realize how much more valuable the process of mapping was than the journey map itself.

The journey map was not the real grail. It was a golden, emerald-studded ringer.


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The CX Grail would be humble, not golden

If by some miracle, you were to discover a shiny, jeweled customer journey template that was already tailored to your specific business and customer base, I would still recommend going through the process of creating one from scratch (as well as being sure to grab your fedora before the collapsing ceiling crushes it).

The process of journey mapping forces you to think differently and understand your customers in ways you previously did not. This is the most valuable treasure you can get out of it.

What you’re really seeking with your journey map is a humble understanding of your customer’s perspective, and you can only attain this by immersing yourself in the process.
customer journey template

Making people happy is hard, but it can be easier

There is no shortcut to understanding people and how they interact with you and your brand. The customer experience is, at its core, about nurturing a relationship. It requires constant care and attention.

There is no customer journey template or easy way to get the benefits of journey mapping, but you can make it easier on yourself. Partnering with someone who has already been to the ancient temple of journey mapping, dodged the poison darts of business-centric perspective, and come out the other side with the prize of deeper CX understanding, is the simplest way to save yourself from the perils of customer exploration.

The best way to find treasure with your customer journey map is to involve yourself in its creation. And remember, CX always marks the spot!

customer journey template

Image credits: JD Hancock,jforth,Hitchster,kneoh,Kenny Louie

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Ryan Cleek

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