One of my favorite things to do is to look at how other disciplines are applying successful techniques to attract and retain their customers. Speaking of customers – did you know that you have customers? Anyway, Marketing is a great place to learn techniques that can help us in learning and performance improvement.

We talk a lot about creating courses and curriculum and what needs to be included in those to teach concepts that people can practice and apply on their jobs. That is a big mission in and of itself – but it is really only one aspect of creating a learner experience.

Learner experience is really the full journey that someone has when they come into your organization. Have you thought about the experience you want them to have?

In marketing it is called the Customer Journey. From the moment that a person becomes aware of a brand until the time they become a trusted brand ambassador, those marketing professionals are thinking about what experience they are creating for the customer.

One of my favorite examples of this is when I shop at Target. I can tell that they have thought about who I am as a customer and what kind of experience I would like to have when I am there. I am a busy mother of three so when I go to target it includes getting house supplies, kids clothes (and sometimes something for me), groceries, kids gifts and anything else that I can quickly throw in my cart before my kids drive me crazy. Even before I park my car, my cartwheel app comes up and recommends coupons for the things that are frequently on my list. Then I walk in and I can get a coffee and then everything I need is in one place. You can tell that Target has thought through the customer journey. Not just one aspect of it but the whole thing. They know me as a customer.

Can you say the same for your employees. What is their Learner Journey when they join your company? How about when they have been there for awhile? From the time they submit a resume until the time they retire or leave the company, they are having an experience. You have the opportunity to define and set that journey – not only does this put you in the driver seat to create the kind of experience that would help your company thrive, but you can ensure that your employees feel that you know them.

According to Talent Management and HR media, “One third (33 percent) of employees knew whether they would stay with their company long-term after their first week”.

How to Create a Learner Experience Journey

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The overall goal is to define the experience you want to create and then put systems in place to ensure that it is being applied consistently and consumed. This will help you stay focused on the outcomes and not get distracted by the tactical things that come up. It is important to set the foundation for learner success and then fill in with the important aspects of the details. This is a great marketing lesson that we can all take and benefit from.