A typical "Customer Journey", if such a thing exists, is not a straight path from discovery to purchase. There are so many touchpoints that a customer can have with a brand, both online and offline, and meeting the expectations of the customer at every step is increasingly difficult.

This article looks at how buying behaviour has shifted and how influence is now driven more by social proof than advertising. This new customer "beehive" is a difficult arena for marketers to compete in. 

The first step will be embracing technology and understanding how cognitive computing can integrate with data to provide a seamless and pro-active buying experience for customers.