This subset of terms from the EBMM appear exclusively in the Customer viewpoint.  Note that many related terms also appear in the Shared terms.

This viewpoint includes a series of terms related to the understanding of customers and their needs.  It is important to note that these terms are not words or concepts used by the customers of an enterprise, even in a general sense. Instead, these are terms used by the enterprise to understand, communicate with, and develop solutions to the needs of a customer.  The growth of Enterprise Architecture into a richer understanding of customers, their needs and enterprise responses to changes in those needs has been a major focus of EA activity in the years between 2008 and 2014.

Brand Perception

A series of customer impressions and expectations about the value of an offering based on the branding associated with that offering.

Brand Promise

A carefully constructed series of commitments made by the maker of a product or service that lives under a brand.  A brand promise helps the customer form an accurate brand impression.

Examples would include: “top quality,” “rarely breaks,” “adapts to fit my lifestyle,” “lowest cost,” “works in unusual ways,” “represents advanced thinking,” “aligns with my values and/or political opinions,” etc.


A channel is a method of delivery of goods and services, or information about them, involving a specific set of relationships and expectations, between two parties in a value system.  There are three basic types of channels: Sales, Distribution, and Communications channels.

Distribution channels are the mechanisms by which the customer’s product or service reaches the customer. For products, the distribution channels element will describe the flow of goods from manufacturing to market, including inventory and retailing. For manufacturing organizations, this element also describes the sourcing of parts and construction of the product or products themselves. For services, this element describes the location, management, and provisioning of service resources to the customers on an as-needed basis.

Sales channels are the mechanisms by which the product or service is sold to the customer.  This typically includes owned retail, owned online, partner retail, partner online, and mobile sales force.

Communication channels include the mechanisms by which the product’s availability and features are described to the customer.  This includes advertising (TV, Radio, Print, Internet, Mobile, Billboard, Direct mail, In-store, In-partner-store) as well as word of mouth, event promotions, and seminars.

Customer Needs

Customer needs are a framing of the motivations that lead specific types of customers to buy or use products and services from the enterprise, and how the enterprise nurtures those motivations through marketing and support activities.

Note that this is not a list of customer types, but rather a list of “customer value statements” that one or more types of customers may align to.

Customer Scenario

A customer scenario is a likely series of events that describes how a customer’s life and normal activities interact with a product or service, from the viewpoint of the customer.

A scenario typically strings together a series of customer and channel touchpoints, in a reasonable situation, as the customer goes through an interaction to learn about, try, acquire, use, service, or dispose of a product or service.

Channel Touchpoint

A point in a customer process or in time where the customer interacts with the process of discovering, experiencing, acquiring, servicing, or disposing of the product.

This is specifically a touchpoint against the channel, and not the product itself.  (for example, a channel touchpoint for a television set can include the retail store where they purchase it, but won’t include the ease of using the remote control.)


A composition of products and/or services (and the prices and conditions under which they are offered), that can be individually purchased by a customer.

Product Touchpoint

A concept in customer scenario modelling, a product touchpoint is a generalized element in a model of the customer interaction with a product.  At a touchpoint, the experience of a customer can impact the setup, use, storage, and disposal of a product and/or service.

In this ontology, a product touchpoint is specifically a touchpoint against the product itself, and not the channel through which it is purchased.  (for example, a product touchpoint for a television set can include the packaging, the remote control, and the tilt pedestal, but won’t include the retail store where a customer purchased the television set.)