The event industry is constantly growing, which also means that the number of similar events increases all the time. In these circumstances, it becomes essential to differentiate your event from others by offering an outstanding experience and to deliver the content that perfectly meets goals and demands of your event participants. Hence, as an event organizer, you need to know who your audience actually is and what these people want to experience before, during and after the event. Creating the event attendee journey map helps to understand all these!
Create attendee profiles
Designing an event customer journey starts from creating the attendees profiles. These profiles illustrate the most common and desired event participants from various target audience groups. Creating the profiles helps to determine the best opportunities to interact with your attendees and make sure that your communication aligns with their needs. Aim to have around five different profiles representing the majority of your event participants.
Start designing the attendee profiles by answering the following questions:
Who are your potential and actual attendees?
What drives their behaviors?
Why do they attend your event? Or why not?
How do they engage with the event process?
When do they interact with you?
What are their needs and demands?
What concerns and challenges do they have?
Design an attendee journey map
Once the attendee profiles are created, it’s time to map the interactions that these personas have with the event. This is your event customer journey map!
An event customer journey map (also known as a participant experience map) is a visual representation of the experience that attendees are having at every stage of your event.
The event attendee journey usually includes five key stages:
During this stage the potential event attendees got to know about the event through advertising, social media and public relations. Consider the following aspects:
From where does the future attendee get to know about the event?
What aspect of the event attracts him/her the most?
What message should the potential attendee get to become more interested?
How should the further interaction between the event organizer and the attendee go?
At this stage, the attendee has already got some information about the event and it’s time to motivate him/her to purchase the tickets. Your goal here is to gradually cultivate the interest in attending the event.
Do you remind your potential attendees about the event?
Can they easily find information about the event on Google and social media?
Through which channels do they get more information about the event? Website? Social media? Email?
Engagement is the stage when the potential attendee finally makes the decision to buy the tickets or register to the event, and the user experience plays a crucial role here. That’s why make the purchase as simple and convenient as possible. You don’t want to lose interested participants at this stage!
Is your website user friendly? Does the mobile version work well?
Is it easy to buy the tickets and additional services?
Does the registration process take a minimum amount of time?
The experience phase is about the event itself and, thus, might be broad and include several sub-phases.
How do the participants move during the event? For in-person events use the floor chart to design what the attendees should see first, second and so on. Where are the stages, sponsors stands and networking areas located?
How do the participants experience the event emotionally? What is the ‘peak’ of your event?
The event is over, but your job is to make attendees come back and bring their friends and colleagues. Use post-event surveys to get to know what went well and what can be done better in the future events.
Would your past attendees recommend the event to others?
Are they interested in coming back themselves? Why or why not?
Examples of customer journey maps
While designing the journey, feel free to choose any kind of visuals from flowcharts to spreadsheets but make sure it represents the event attendee experience in the most clear and meaningful way.
The journey map doesn’t have to be concise, it can be full of details. In fact, the more details you consider, the better experience you can possibly create for your event participants. At the same time, don’t be afraid to make mistakes. If you organize the event for the first time, it’s highly likely that something won’t go as planned. Within time, you will get to know your attendees better and will be able to create more accurate customer journey maps and gradually enhance the event satisfaction.
Stay tuned for Liveto’s ultimate guide on event customer journeys at virtual events. It’s coming soon, but while you wait don’t lose your chance to watch our latest free webinar with a special guest Cyriel Kortleven who shares some insights around his philosophy ‘No More Boring Online Sessions’. Download the webinar recording for free here.