When it comes to emotional impact, experience design can influence whether customers will have a long-term relationship with your brand or remain just transactional customers. Therefore, an experience that seeks to impact basic and more advanced emotions can be the best ally to increase your brand loyalty.

 Paul Ekman is a psychologist who pioneered the study of emotions and facial expressions. In the 70s, he proposed a theory about the existence of six basic human emotions expressed through facial gestures: happiness, fear, anger, sadness, surprise, and disgust.

In 1980, Robert Plutchik, Psychologist and Professor Emeritus at the University of South Florida, unveiled his theory on the "Wheel of Emotions," where he states that the basic emotions would be eight: joy, aversion, confidence, fear, surprise, sadness, anger and anticipation. From these emotions, he said another eight advanced emotions would be born: love, treachery, disappointment, contempt, optimism, remorse, and fright.


The Wheel of Emotions by Robert Plutchik


When designing the customer journey, it is essential to consider Plutchik's basic and advanced emotions, such as generating happiness and satisfaction in consumers. But what happens if you seek to impact deeper emotions, such as optimism?


The Importance of Emotions in the Customer Journey Map


In creating a customer journey map or customer journey, one of the main tasks is to identify and predict what emotions customers will have when interacting with the service. Pain points can be determined by considering what emotions result in negative experiences for customers. Generally, easily recognizable (basic) emotions are focused on because they can be represented with simple expressions.


The study of emotions in the customer journey involves using the four stages. First, identify the emotions that are evoked at different points of interaction with customers. Then you need to understand how they affect the customer experience during the trip. Next, use these emotions to arouse consumer interest, and motivate customers to prefer your brand.

Understanding and directing emotions in the customer's journey are essential to building positive experiences. The process of perceiving, understanding, using, and directing emotions sets organizations apart from their competitors when implementing these experiences. Remember that the most important thing is to take your clients from negative emotions to satisfaction (or even ecstasy).


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