This case is an example of a journey that starts earlier than one might think at first. The scenario is moving houses and the journey map is created by an energy provider.
The moving journey is very important for energy providers to understand. Why? Firstly, it triggers a series of events in the customer's life that could result in the provider being replaced by another provider. Secondly, it is an opportunity for the energy provider to prove its value and strengthen the relationship with the customer.
To understand this life-changing situation in order to make sure the customer stays, it's important to figure out the events in the customer's life that led up to the situation where the customer gives notice of relocation, eg tells the energy provider that they are moving.
We have to extend the start of the journey to before the customer contacts the energy provider to inform them about the move. Otherwise, we would miss out on crucial insight about drivers, the situations before the move, and where the customer is coming from. In this case, the research that the energy provider conducted, led to the discovery that the moving journey starts off much earlier than at the first point of contact. This journey had a planning phase and a phase where the planning turned into actions (for example going on house viewings, meeting with a broker, etc.)
Understanding this, enabled the energy provider to come up with solutions and ideas on how they should design the customer experience in this journey. For instance, they realized they could start communicating and offering their services at an earlier stage. And based on insights about the customer situation also find occasions where they were able to help reduce some of the stress connected to moving houses.
The end of the journey?
This customer journey is about moving house. When does it end? Is it when the customers have moved in? How long should this stretch? The research this energy provider did, showed that a lot of customers start to dream and plan for a renovation soon after they have settled in. So even if the moving journey may end here, it may very well be the start of a new customer journey, perhaps equally important to map.
Try to stretch out the beginning and end of your journey map, to test and learn.
Play around with the idea of when a journey actually starts. You might end up way too early, but it’s just an exercise. Go step by step towards a situation that is relevant for you to work with.