Keeping your destination’s name on the minds of visitors is a key objective.

One way to help achieve this is for your digital marketing content to be as relevant and valuable to your followers and visitors as possible.

To boost your destination’s content appeal and engagement, consider using a thoughtful content development strategy that combines visitor personas with visitor journey stages.

Visitor Personas

What is a visitor persona? Simple put, a visitor persona is fictional identity of an ideal visitor. It is created from a composite of market research, demographic data, analytic data and marketing research with direct customer input, like polls, interviews, surveys, focus groups, etc. The information is then crystalized and shaped into a distinct visitor type or person that is critical to your marketing success.

You can have multiple types of visitor personas. You can have as many visitor personas as you want. There’s no right or wrong number. But, if you don’t have them yet, it’s probably best to start developing just one visitor persona and go from there.

Visitor Journey Cycle

Next, you want to think about your visitor’s life cycle. I prefer to think about this in terms of the phases of a relationship or, in this case, a relationship with your destination’s brand.

Why? Because this schema views the customer as a human being and squarely places the accent on a lifetime value rather than a transactional view of visitors.

I suggest the following conceptual framework for understanding visitor journey stages, from top to bottom:


Strategic Goal: Awareness


Strategic Goal: Consideration


Strategic Goal: Decision


Strategic Goal: Loyal Choices


Strategic Goal: Reward and Multiply New Friends


Strategic Goal: Gift and Welcome Old Friend Back

Bring it All Together

When you bring it all together by placing your visitor journey cycle on the x-axis and your visitor persona on the y-axis, you end up with something like this:

Persona chart

As you think of the different customers and goals for your customer segments, create value propositions, themes and titles tailored for each one. You would repeat this process for each visitor persona you have and for each publishing cycle.

Combining your destination’s visitor personas and visitor life cycle is a power strategy to plan and organize your content development.

It will give your DMO a systematic, integrated and value boosting approach to help drive views and engagement to your destination’s web, social media or mobile content.

Posted by Chris Ribaudo