Assigning Emotions to Moments of Truth

Enhancing Customer Scenario® Mapping by Capturing Feelings

November 15, 2012

Customers are people first and foremost. And their emotions come into play as they traverse their scenarios to their desired goals. Capturing how customers might feel depending on how well you help them achieve their goals can give you a line of site from customer priorities through your bottom-line opportunities based not only on how they measure success, but also on how they are feeling while doing business with you.


Customers are happy when things go well, and the positive emotions can impact your bottom line. Conversely, when things don’t go well, they are unhappy, and the negative emotions can hurt your customer relationships.

In our Customer Co-Design consulting practice, we are becoming more prescriptive about capturing customer emotions and their consequences in our Customer Scenario® Mapping methodology (akin to Customer Journey Mapping). By identifying the negative emotions related to a failed Moment of Truth and the positive emotions related to Customer Success Metrics, you can see how emotions can impact your bottom line.

Moments of Truth in “I Want to Find a Great Birthday Gift”

Moments of Truth in “I Want to Find a Great Birthday Gift”
(Click on image to enlarge.)

© 2012 Patricia Seybold Group Inc.

1. In this simple scenario, there are three points where things can fall apart—the Moments of Truth—which could prevent Nancy from achieving her desired outcome.


Several weeks ago, I wrote an article1 about how important it is to understand what your customers want to achieve as they go through their activities towards achieving their desired goals. As I stated, understanding and responding to underlying emotions as your customers traverse their scenarios with your company can help you better avoid negative emotions and turn positive emotions into loyal relationships.

Patty Seybold and I have had a number of brainstorming sessions since then about how we can enhance our Customer Scenario® Mapping (CSM) methodology to capture customer emotions and then use that information to help companies determine how best to offer options that will make customers happy.

Although this article is specific to CSM, the concepts are universally applicable. If you have customers, and they are human (and, thus, have feelings), here are some tips on capturing the likely emotions that will occur when customers are interacting with your brand, and help you discover ways to eliminate causes of negative emotions.


Moments of Truth Are Customers’ Priorities

As anyone who has participated in Customer Scenario Mapping knows, Moments of Truth—in “scenario speak”—are the showstoppers—the points during a customer’s scenario at which, if your customer can’t succeed at specific actions, the scenario falls apart and the desired outcome is not likely to be achieved. Moments of Truth (MoTs) are typically defined as a negative (e.g., I can’t get this delivered in time!). MoTs are also the points in the scenario where emotions are the highest.

Let’s look at the scenario used as an example in the previous article on customer emotion: Nancy wants to find a birthday gift that her sister Christine will love. Nancy believes that the best way to start this is to check out her sister Christine’s online wish lists (see Illustration 1, above).

In this simple scenario, there are three MoTs, each of which could cause negative emotions (see Table A).

METHODOLOGY UPDATE. A new step in the ever-evolving, 20+-year-old CSM methodology is capturing the negative emotions associated with MoTs. During the discussion of Moments of Truth, the customers will be asked how they would feel if their priority isn’t met…(more)


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***Endnote*** 1) See "The Emotional Rollercoaster within Customer Scenarios: Most Customer Scenarios Bring Out Mixed Customer Emotions; Are You Prepared to Respond to Them?" November 1, 2012, by Ronni T. Marshak ***Endnote***

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