Terms like customer journey, customer loyalty, and customer experience are popular today. Most strive to be customer-centric, put the customer in focus, and – not least – boast that they are indeed customer-driven. But what do all those words really mean? How are they connected?

In this blog post, you will get a jam-packed guide on the topic of the customer journey. We clarify what a customer journey is, explain which terms you should be familiar with, and provide you with information about the phases you can include in your customer journey, to finally guide you step by step on how to create your own customer journey. And our hope with the blog post is just that: that you, after having read the text, feel confident enough to design a customer journey tailored to your audience.

In this blog post, you will learn more about:
• What is a customer journey?
• Why should you design a customer journey?
• 10 common terms related to the customer journey
• What phases are included in the customer journey?
• How to design your customer journey – step by step
• Summary

What is a customer journey?

A customer journey is the sum of all interactions that your guests and customers have with your brand over time. Yes, that's at least the short version of what a customer journey is.

Let's delve a little deeper. A customer journey encompasses the entire journey from the first touchpoint to completed purchase and – for those of you working in the event industry – completed visit. In between, numerous interactions occur between the audience and you. The customer journey also continues after the visit has taken place, where you should strive to create long-term relationships and turn first-time customers into returning customers.

In other words, a customer journey encompasses many different interactions. These together give each of your customers a unique overall impression of your brand. Understanding how to develop as good a customer journey as possible is therefore important.

And what is a digital customer journey?

What is a digital customer journey then? Well, there are differences between a customer journey and a digital customer journey, even though they overlap.

When we talk about the customer journey in general, both a poster in town, a Google ad, a purchase online or at the ticket counter, as well as on-site customer service can be included. When we talk about the digital customer journey, we mean interactions that occur digitally. Here, the same Google ad can be included, but also an organic post on Instagram, a newsletter, and an online review.

Thus, a digital customer journey encompasses interactions that occur online, while a customer journey includes interactions that occur both online and offline.

A simplified customer journey in nine steps
Here's what a simplified customer journey might look like.

Why should you design a customer journey?

Perhaps it feels like a waste of time to spend effort on this activity. Why design a customer journey when you could spend the time creating that newsletter or contacting your partners? Of course, we have several reasons why you should design a customer journey!

1. Improved customer understanding & experience

It's easy to become blind to your own environment. Especially when your main focus is on communication, marketing, and conducting your events. But how do the audience and customers actually experience the activities that you and your business undertake?

Mapping customer journeys is a strategy to step into your guests' shoes. With a customer journey, you can understand their experiences when they interact with your event, its marketing, and other related activities. What obstacles and challenges do they face? What are their specific needs? And what strategies can be implemented to offer them an improved overall experience?

By designing a customer journey, you as an event marketer have a unique opportunity to identify and address these questions. You also gain increased insights into how you can tailor your events so that they not only meet the audience's expectations but also exceed their imaginations and experiences.

2. Marketing that makes an impact

A well-planned customer journey ensures that your audience and potential customers receive the right information, at the right time, and in the right channel. Succeeding in this helps them in their decision-making process, which also increases the likelihood that they will actually make a purchase.

However, with your customer journey, you should not only focus on the "pre-phase". As previously mentioned, the customer journey involves the entire journey. Therefore, you should also consider where, when, and how you, for example, should hold contests on social media and send out feedback forms. Which marketing activities should you involve and why?

By considering all parts, you can both increase reach, enhance word-of-mouth marketing, and gain valuable insights to improve future events.

3. Increased brand loyalty

  1. A thoughtful, positive, and engaging customer journey increases the likelihood that your audience will return. And guests who return – in harmony with you continuing to deliver valuable communication – often lead to more long-term relationships and increased loyalty to your brand.

Returning guests are also more likely to act as ambassadors for your brand, where they spread positive reviews and recommend your events to others. Great, right!

With a full understanding of the customer journey, many benefits follow. A greater understanding of, for example, touchpoints, phases, and channel choices, also gives you – not least – greater calm and a better overview.

A sign with the word Ticket office on it
A visit to the ticket office is an interaction to include in your customer journey.

10 common terms related to the customer journey

To gain a comprehensive understanding of how to build your customer journey, it’s good to be familiar with the following terms.

1. Touchpoint

A touchpoint is an interaction a customer has with your brand, product, or service. Touchpoints can occur both online and offline, with examples including:

• A visit to your website
• An interaction with a Facebook post
• A call to customer service

2. Phase

A phase is a kind of period in the customer journey. There isn’t a set group of phases that are included in all customer journeys across all industries, but it’s common to include some of these phases:

• Awareness
• Consideration
• Decision / Purchase
• Post-purchase
• Retention
• Participation
• Loyalty
• Ambassador

Further down in the blog post, you’ll find which phases we choose to use in our example, linked to the event and experience industry.

3. Conversion point

A specific touchpoint where your potential customer takes a significant step towards becoming a paying customer. Examples of such occasions include when the person signs up for your newsletter or makes an actual purchase.

4. Omnichannel

Omnichannel includes all channels and platforms where the customer interacts with your brand in any way. Examples include:

• Your physical ticket office
• Personal meetings
• Phone
• Email
• Social media
• Traditional media such as TV and print

5. Customer experience

The overall experience that your customer has with your brand over time. Customer experience encompasses all interactions and touchpoints, which together give the customer a perceived overall impression.

6. Customer loyalty

Customer loyalty refers to an ongoing relationship between your company and your customer. This also includes the customer’s engagement with the brand that leads to them making repeat purchases and/or engaging in your relationship.

7. Persona

A persona is a semi-fictional character that represents your ideal customer. The persona helps you understand the ideal customer's behaviors, needs, and goals, where you base the persona on real data. You can have multiple personas, for example, one who likes pop, one who likes opera, and one who likes heavy metal. You can also have a customer journey for each persona.

8. Feedback

Feedback is thoughts, opinions, and reviews collected directly from your customers. Often, it concerns the audience's experiences related to the visit, service, and communication. You then use the feedback to improve the customer journey.

9. Customer Lifetime Value (CLV)

A measure that estimates the total value a customer is expected to bring to your business over the entirety of your relationship. CLV is calculated like this:

Average purchase value x Average purchase frequency x Average customer lifespan = CLV

Average purchase value: The average amount the customer spends per purchase. Average purchase frequency: How often the customer makes purchases. Average customer lifespan: How long the customer remains engaged with your company.

10. Churn rate

The percentage of customers who stop being customers – either completely or over a certain period of time. It is an important indicator of customer satisfaction and loyalty. You should keep churn rate in mind when planning your customer journey – how can you ensure that the churn rate does not exceed expectations?

Of course, there are many different concepts, terms, and measures to keep track of. You don’t necessarily need to include all terms in the calculation when designing your customer journey, but it's good to have an understanding of them when you're working on it.

A hand holding a mobile phone with a digital ticket
How do you ensure that the audience returns after their first visit?

What phases are included in the customer journey?

As mentioned, there is no set list of phases that must be included in the design of a customer journey. Different industries have different challenges, and different sectors sell different goods and services. One business might sell daily goods (like milk, bread, and butter) while another sells infrequently purchased items (like trips, refrigerators, and cars). Aspects like these mean that the customer journey varies depending on who you are.

The following phases are based on the event industry.

A customer journey in seven stages: awareness, consideration, decision, before the event, during the event, after the event, and loyalty

Phase 1: Awareness

In the awareness phase of the customer journey, your potential customer realizes that they have a need or interest. It's not certain that the customer knows they need a concert ticket or a visit to the opera yet, but at this stage, they start to google and explore their need/interest further.

Your goal during this phase is not to encourage a purchase – the customer is not ready to convert yet. Instead, you should deliver educational and/or entertaining content that shows how you can meet the potential customer's needs. In this phase, you create awareness that your brand and/or your event exists, without selling.

To reach your desired audience and create awareness about your brand and/or event, you can use:

• Social media – contests, organic posts, reels, etc.
• Advertising – in public transport, social media, newspapers, search engines, etc.
• Influencer collaborations

Channels are chosen, as always, based on where your desired target audience is.

Phase 2: Consideration

In the consideration phase, the potential customer is well aware of their need. They have done enough research to understand that it's an evening of entertainment that they need and want to give themselves (or gift). But, the question is whether it should be a comedian to work the abs, a theater performance to entertain, or a symphony orchestra to awe the customer? And, should the visit be at venue X, Y, or Z?

When the potential customer reaches this phase in the customer journey, they compare different brands and offers. Therefore, at this stage, you should tell more about yourself and your unique advantages. What distinguishes you from other, similar brands? What will the potential customer get out of a visit to you?

Your goal in the consideration phase of the customer journey is to help the customer navigate among all options. You should bring the customer closer to a purchase decision. Examples of touchpoints and interactions in this phase include:

• Reviews from previous guests & existing customers
• Email campaigns & newsletters
• Online advertising directing the customer to your website
• Social media – contests, organic posts, reels, etc.

In this phase, you can be somewhat more explicit and provide more detailed information about the brand and/or event. You should make it easier for the customer to make a decision.

A black and white image of an orchestra with the audience seated around the stage

Phase 3: Decision

In the decision phase of the customer journey, the potential customer has made a decision and is ready to buy. At this stage, you should make it as easy as possible for the customer to make a purchase from you, which means you can be more "straight to the point".

So, how do you create a seamless purchasing process?

Clear communication
Firstly, you should be clear in your communication. You should ensure that all information about date, time, place, price, and cancellation policy, etc., is clear and accessible.

Offers & discounts
Secondly, consider if you can give the potential customer something in connection with registration or purchase. Perhaps they can get 2 for 1? Or receive a 20 percent discount if they sign up for your newsletter? Review what offers, discounts, and benefits the potential customer can take advantage of.

Smooth purchasing experience
Thirdly, it should be really easy to buy a ticket for your event, subscribe, or register for your newsletter. What personal information is really necessary for the customer to make a purchase? What payment solutions are available? Try to make it as easy as possible for the person to become a customer of yours.

Excellent customer service
Fourthly, you should offer the potential customer good and fast service via chat, phone, and/or FAQ. They are ready to convert, and you should therefore be there to answer any questions and concerns.

Phase 4: Pre-Event

The potential customer has made a decision and is now a "real" customer. Well done! But, the customer journey doesn't end here. Now, in the pre-event phase, you need to keep the customer's engagement up and make them feel confident about their decision to purchase a ticket to the event.

From the moment the customer makes a purchase and receives their confirmation email (which you should definitely send!), you can, for example, provide the customer with:

• Emails with personal greetings, sneak peeks & possible add-on products
• Relevant newsletters with valuable tips, recommendations & updates
• SMS messages with pre-visit information
• Social media posts related to the event

Make sure to regularly communicate with the customer about the event, including practical information and highlights, to maintain interest.

A hot dog with topping in a paper package

Phase 5: During the Event

A lot is at stake during the event itself. All the content the customer has received throughout the customer journey and all the expectations they have before the visit are now becoming a reality. In the "during the event" phase of the customer journey, there are many different touchpoints to consider:

• Email or SMS messages that welcome the guest & provide important info on the day of the event
• The personal reception & ease of scanning their ticket at entry
• The personal service when purchasing food, drinks & merchandise
• Printed QR codes that lead to your website
• The venue, décor & atmosphere • Posters & screens advertising upcoming events (a good chance to get the customer to return!)
• Well-thought-out queuing system
• SMS wishing a pleasant journey home

Yes, the list can be long. There are simply many different interactions between the customer and your brand in this phase. How do you ensure the visit is as good as possible?

Phase 6: Post-Event

The customer journey is nearing its end – the event is over, and the customer is back home. And wouldn't it be nice if everything was done by now? However, that's not the case. After the event, you should continue to communicate with the customer and show that you care. You want to be top of mind for the customer the next time they purchase a ticket to an event, right?

In this part of the customer journey, you can include, for example:

• A personal thank-you message via SMS or email
• The opportunity to leave feedback (take the chance to ask about the experience of both the communication before and the execution of the event)
• Offers that are exclusive to past attendees

Phase 7: Loyalty

In the loyalty phase, the customer not only chooses to stay with your brand but actively promotes it to family, friends, and colleagues. This phase could therefore also be called the "advocacy phase" or "ambassador phase".

During this phase, you should focus on delivering relevant content, fantastic service, and exclusive offers (as you've done throughout the customer journey, right?) that build loyalty. If you succeed in this, the customer will become a returning and loyal customer who recommends you to others.

The loyalty phase can include the following touchpoints and interactions, for example:

• An easy-to-navigate website
• Loyalty programs, subscriptions & season tickets
• Benefits for customers & newsletter subscribers, such as priority access, discounts & access to more content
• Targeted emails

A laptop with a sticker in the shape of the MarketHype logo
Now it's time to get started and design your own customer journey!

How to design your customer journey – step by step

Now you know what a customer journey and a digital customer journey are. You know why you should spend time creating one. And you're familiar with common terms and phases in a customer journey, right? Therefore, it's time for the final test: to develop and design your own customer journey.

Below, we go through five steps to help you get started. Feel free to add or remove steps. The important thing is that you get started and that the customer journey is tailored to your business.

Before you start – be realistic!

Before you start developing the customer journey, there are some things to consider. You need to be a bit realistic (even though we understand you want to dream big!) and base your plans on the conditions and resources of your business.

Staff & knowledge
How many people do you have to work with the interactions and marketing? Do you have the required knowledge, or do you need training or external help?

How much time can the staff dedicate to creating, implementing, and following up on the customer journey? Time planning is crucial to keep the project on track.

What's the budget? This affects which tools you can use, whether you can hire external providers, and the scope of your marketing campaigns.

Channels, platforms & tools
What tools and marketing channels do you currently have access to? Is anything missing? An important thing to remember is that it's better to choose a few channels and tools and do them really well, rather than using too many and not having the time to update/use them all.

Step 1: Define goals, purpose & key data points

What's your goal with actually creating a customer journey? Perhaps you want to increase ticket sales, build brand awareness, or acquire more loyal customers? Become more customer-focused? Get more people to discover an event?

Step 1 is simply to define your goals and purposes with the design of the customer journey. What do you hope to achieve?

At the same stage, it's good to think about which data points are important for these goals. What key performance indicators (KPIs) are relevant to measure the success of your customer journey? Maybe Customer Lifetime Value or Churn Rate? And how will you be able to collect and analyze your data? Having a plan for what data to collect and how is useful for continuously improving the customer journey.

Three people laughing in an office

Step 2: Define your target audience & persona(s)

In step 2, you define your target audience based on the character of the event and what objectives you have. You also create one or several personas. Consider questions like these:

• How old is your persona? What life stage are they in?
• What gender is your persona?
• Where and how does your persona live?
• What interests does your persona have?
• What needs does your persona have?
• What media does your persona consume? How can you reach the target group?
• What brands does your persona like (other than yours)?

Step 3: Clarify which phases your customer journey should include

As you already know by now, the customer journey is divided into several phases. Identify which phases are relevant to your business and which ones you want to focus on the most. You can draw inspiration from the phases we mention under "What phases are included in the customer journey?":

Phase 1: Awareness
Phase 2: Consideration
Phase 3: Decision
Phase 4: Before the event
Phase 5: During the event
Phase 6: After the event
Phase 7: Loyalty

Step 4: Map out which channels to include

Step 5 is to decide which channels are most effective for reaching your target audience and integrate them into your customer journey. You can include, among others:

• Digital channels: Such as your website, social media, email marketing & online advertising
• Physical channels: For example, traditional advertising, the ticket office, events & trade shows
• Partnership channels: Collaborations with other brands & influencers

Choosing the right channels is crucial for creating a good experience. With an omnichannel approach, you ensure that the customer can move seamlessly between different channels while still having a cohesive and positive experience of your brand.

One person writing on a whiteboard and one person sitting with a laptop

Step 5: Identify the touchpoints of the customer journey

In step 5, you will identify the touchpoints that customers have with your brand throughout the customer journey. This is done to strengthen a positive customer experience. You can include the following touchpoints, for example:

Website: One of the first impressions many customers get of your brand
• Social media: Interaction & engagement with your content
• Customer service: Support & help offered to potential, existing, and former customers
• Email communication: Direct communication such as newsletters & offers
• SMS: Direct communication such as important information & offers
• Physical encounters: Visits to the ticket counter and the actual event
• Conversion points: The moments where the potential customer becomes a paying customer
• Feedback: Opportunity for the customer to rate their experiences

Step 6: Set a plan for realizing your customer journey

With all the information and planning in place, it's time to implement your customer journey – for real! Therefore, in step 6, you should:

• Create a timeline: Determine when and how each part of your customer journey should be conducted.
• Allocate responsibilities: Decide who within your team is responsible for each part of the customer journey.
• Budget: Allocate your budget based on the activities and channels that are most important in your customer journey.
• Measure and adjust: Use systems to measure how well your customer journey is working and be prepared to make adjustments based on what you learn.


What is a customer journey?
A customer journey is the sum of all interactions that your guests and customers have with your brand over time – from the first touchpoint in the awareness phase and onwards. A digital customer journey encompasses interactions that occur online, while a customer journey includes interactions that occur both online and offline.

Why should you design a customer journey?
1. You gain a better understanding of your audience and their customer experience.
2. You can plan and create marketing that truly has an impact based on your objectives.
3. You increase the audience's loyalty to your brand through a thoughtful, positive, and engaging customer journey.

10 common terms related to the customer journey
1. Touchpoint
2. Phase
3. Conversion point
4. Omnichannel
5. Customer experience
6. Customer loyalty
7. Persona
8. Feedback
9. Customer Lifetime Value (CLV)
10. Churn rate

What phases are included in the customer journey, within the event industry?
Phase 1: Awareness
Phase 2: Consideration
Phase 3: Decision
Phase 4: Pre-Event
Phase 5: During the Event
Phase 6: Post-Event
Phase 7: Loyalty

How to design your customer journey – step by step
Step 1: Define the goals and purposes of your customer journey design. Also choose which data points to focus on in order to measure and achieve your objectives.

Step 2: Define your target audience and personas based on the nature of the event and your objectives.

Step 3: Clarify which phases your customer journey should include.

Step 4: Map out which channels you should include in your customer journey. Remember, it's better to choose a few channels and do them really well, than to be present in all channels and not succeed in your presence.

Step 5: Identify touchpoints that can strengthen a positive customer experience. There are many to choose from, but remember to be realistic about the resources you have (staff, knowledge, time, and budget).

Step 6: Set a plan for how you will realize your customer journey. Create a schedule, allocate responsibilities, budget, and follow up on data.