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Visualizing Customer Emotions:
A Mapping Technique

In this article, we discuss customer experience management solutions.
First, we look at the term digital marketing, which generally is used only in reference to marketing and advertising in the digital sphere. Below, we offer the view that the term can include advanced offline marketing.
In this context, together with Emotion Tech Inc., we have developed, and now provide, a digital transformation support service. This electronic delivery system allows information regarding customers’ experiences of services provided by enterprises to be broadly evaluated, based on online and offline customer contact points.
After analyzing the value of customer experiences and identifying issues in an enterprise’s service that need to be addressed, we propose digital media- and IT-based solutions. Below we introduce our analytical method and give an example of its use.

Common Pitfalls of Customer Journey Mapping

There are many approaches to, and ways of illustrating, customer journeys. For example, different opinions are often offered by workshop participants, who represent each of the organizations or departments involved in a service development project. This collaborative approach to building a picture is probably the most common.
However, on such occasions, one nearly always finds the process used to produce graphs to track the emotional transition of consumers to be incongruous with the project goals. Typically, the axes of a line graph are drawn, and the graph is used to track the feelings and motivation of consumers during the journey being mapped. What makes us feel less than comfortable with this approach is that the curves representing customers’ emotional transition are drawn freehand and so are less than exact.
In other words, if the precise meaning of feelings and motivation is not given, and the scale of the graph’s Y axis is not defined, the journey map will be imprecisely produced.
For this reason, despite the many man-hours spent in a workshop, there are no tangible results to justify the enterprise’s investment. That no more than a journey map is produced seems to be a common pitfall.

Visualizing Customer Experience Value

To create a digital transformation support service—which is based on the visualization of customer emotion—it is necessary to visualize customer experience value.
By understanding customer emotion, the service supports clarification of the validity of measures executed and return on investment.
The customer experience (CX) survey we use for visualization differs from general customer satisfaction (CS) surveys in the number of items included. The CX survey generally only includes the following.

  1. Overall service loyalty (score between 0 and 10)
  2. Breakdown of the service into 11 scenes. What impact (caused the respondent to add a point, subtract a point, or neither) did each scene have on overall endorsement
  3. Reasons for the impacts, from a customer perspective

There are several reasons for having few questions in the CX survey. First, it is possible to do an analysis using only the above three items. Second, since the survey is carried out based on an assumption that there will be further surveys focusing on service-improvement results, it is essential to reduce the burden placed on customers.
The example we provide is that of a real estate brokerage company (condominium division). The business, with some 1,500 employees, in recent years has seen its competitors take a big lead. This caused the company to recognize that its sales activities required improvement.
To identify the relevant sales issues and clarify points that could be improved, the company implemented the three-question survey. It targeted potential customers after they had visited a condominium showroom. Then the results were analyzed and compared with actual condominium sale-and-purchase contract data.

Visualizing Customer Emotions: A Mapping Technique

Data on whether a sale-and-purchase contract was signed is the dependent variable.
When we conducted a simple linear regression analysis using the Q1 endorsement score as the explanatory variable, we found that a one point rise in the endorsement score correlated with a contract-signing rate increase of 1.4 times.
Next, we conducted an analysis of what should be done to raise the endorsement score.

Visualizing Customer Emotions: A Mapping Technique

We quantified the responses to Q2—point added, point subtracted, or neither—as 0 or 1. Next, setting the endorsement score from Q1 as the dependent variable, we analyzed the data using Hayashi’s Quantification Method Type I analysis. We used sales service scenes 1–11 from Q2 as the explanatory variable. We thus were able to visualize the degree of positive or negative impact each scene had on the endorsement score.

Visualizing Customer Emotions: A Mapping Technique

In the figure above, the Current State—row 2—represents the positive and negative impact of each scene on the endorsement score. Impact Power—row 1—represents the absolute value of the degree of positive and negative impact, while Current State—row 3—represents the differential value and degree of positive and negative impact.
Row 1 shows the degree to which a service scene had a tendency to affect a customer’s endorsement score positively or negatively. Row 2 shows the degree to which each service scene affected the overall endorsement score, and whether the impact was positive or negative.
Application of these results to a customer’s journey map resulted in the figure below.

Visualizing Customer Emotions: A Mapping Technique

The X axis corresponds to each scene in sequence—specifically the services provided by the enterprise (in this example, a sales consulting service). The Y axis corresponds to the level of impact on the endorsement score. This correlates with the signing of a sale-and-purchase contract.
The green line corresponds to the strength of impact—positive or negative—on customers (see row 1). The pink line corresponds to impact strength (see row 3).
From the results we see that the service activity scenes described in the CX survey, Q2-5 (proposal based on your [the customer’s] requirements) and Q2-6 (appropriate response to questions), received unexpectedly negative evaluations considering the level of impact these activities have on customer endorsement scores.
To understand the reasons that each activity was negatively evaluated, and which points led to this outcome, we used the responses given in Q3 that reflect a customer perspective. We then performed a text mining analysis of these answers to quantify them, thereby enabling us to use the results as explanatory variables.
Q2 was used as the dependent variable, and we again performed Hayashi's Quantification Method Type I analysis. We were thus able to identify particular points affecting customers’ evaluations. We found that negative impact was based on such perceptions as, “proposals suitable for me (the customer) were not provided,” and “they mostly talked about things we were not asking.”
Use of this type of analysis makes it possible to estimate, to a certain extent, the results attainable by identifying the timing of damage to customer experience value, and implementing measures to remedy the problems.
The introduction of digital marketing programs should go far in remedying any lack of understanding of customers, as in the example given. As discussed in our previous article, such programs support appropriate sales activities by working to deepen the level of understanding on the part of sales staff vis-à-vis customers. We thereby are striving to visualize customer emotion.
While discussion of a customer journey is often associated with a right-brain approach, it is hoped that the data accumulation-based method of journey mapping will be a useful reference.
It shows that digital marketing does not only refer to digital marketing activities in the digital sphere. The term can be applied to services provided by enterprises in digital channels, as well as to brick-and-mortar channels.
Although discussions of digital marketing tend to become methodology-centric, we should first think issue-centrically about customer experience. To this end, not only is methodology required, but also improvements in operational processes and organizational reform.
It is for this reason that, these days, approaches which utilize IT and digital media to solve such issues are referred to as digital transformation, which is to be differentiated from digital marketing.

Project member

Visualizing Customer Emotions: A Mapping Technique

Takashi Uozumi

Manager
Dentsu Digital

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