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SAN FRANCISCO — The customer journey is not a series of events, but a continuous experience.

That’s the word from TripIt, a company that tries to make real-world journeys easier. “It’s about the journey we’re on with the customer,” director of marketing Elisa Haidt said today at GrowthBeat 2014 on a panel about her firm’s personalized touch points.

TripIt organizes a customer’s trip into a master itinerary, which Haidt described as “taking the stress out of your travel.”

“We want to make their lives a little bit easier,” she said.

A recent promotion at customers’ one-year anniversaries offered a trial version of the company’s premium version and scored a 900 percent increase in adoption.

This kind of promotion integrated into a customer’s buying journey has to be “something that feels natural, in terms of the customer experience,” said VentureBeat VP of product John Koetsier, who moderated the panel.

“The marketing is not episodic, but [is part of] a journey.”

It’s “not just a campaign,” added co-panelist Gordon Evans, VP of product marketing at Salesforce. “Think about journey management.”

Evans described TripIt’s hugely successful anniversary promotion as a “very simple concept” that fits into a life simply by “acknowledging somebody on their anniversary.”

As a TripIt customer and frequent traveller, he also pointed to updates he gets from the service “before I get it from the airlines.”

“Always put yourself in the shoes of the consumer and think about their experience with you,” Haidt suggested. And “always ask a ‘so-what’– why is this relevant to me?”

“Abandon something in your shopping cart,” Evans recommended, so the marketer can see the customer’s journey behind the data.

From the marketer’s point of view, he said, “data drives relevancy to the consumer, and relevancy is what drives results.”


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