Have you ever wondered how to better connect with your customers or potential customers? Most likely, yes, since today all companies seek to provide personalized experiences to generate loyalty in their customers. It is no longer just a matter of providing a product or service that is the best on the market, but of informing customers of the best possible option for them at that precise moment. And no matter how attractive your message is, if it is general and lacks personalization, it loses power, since each client expects a perfect solution to their particular problem or need.

Devising a journey that is suitable for each customer is the work of several areas of a company, from marketing and sales to customer service. It is a comprehensive job that requires putting yourself in the shoes of each buyer persona and identifying what they need, when they need it, and how they should hear about the solution.

Historically, companies have been designing customers’ journeys, but the creation methodologies have become more complex, and current technology can take them to the next level. The thoroughness of each journey depends on a company’s size, maturity, and level of professionalization.

In this article we will conceptualize the term “customer journey,” talk about the specific role of marketing in these flows, and discuss how marketing automation technologies can scale favorable results for the company.

What Is the Customer Journey?

When we talk about a customer journey, we refer to the set of interactions that clients or potential clients have with our company, which make up their overall experience with us. These interactions depend on the current stage of the customer relationship, and when analyzing them, we consider the channels through which they occur, the motivations behind these interactions, and the actions to take from them.

The 5 Stages of the Customer Journey

There are different categorizations of the stages of a customer journey, which depend on the business type and complexity. In this article, we’ll refer to the five stages of the customer journey established by Microsoft:

  • Awareness: the client recognizes a need they have, and we generate acknowledgement about how our product/service can solve it.
  • Consideration: the client is actively assessing the different offers in the market that might solve their need, including our own product/service.
  • Conversion: we reach out to the client with a direct call to action.
  • Retention: we reinforce the value of our offer and relationship with the client to increase their loyalty.
  • Advocacy: satisfied customers contribute to our growth through positive feedback and sharing their experiences with others.

The Role of Marketing in the Customer Journey Stages

Throughout the different phases, the marketing area has the crucial role of enhancing the customer experience.

  • In the Awareness stage, the marketing department creates multiple campaigns focused on telling specific people about the company’s product/service and how it can solve their particular pain point. Campaigns can be organic or paid, and they can take place in multiple channels, both on and offline. When creating these campaigns, it’s important to give the potential client all the tools to keep in touch and engage with you. In the digital ecosystem, for example, landing pages, web forms, email replies, and more should be available and optimized to generate leads.
  • Next, in the Consideration stage, marketing nurtures the leads they generated in the Awareness stage. Once again, you must execute targeted campaigns and analyze data from interactions with potential clients. Remember that the buyer persona at this stage is considering multiple options to solve their pain point, so you need to be consistent and assertive in order to stand out.
  • In the Conversion stage, marketing employs incisive calls to action. Without being too pushy or invasive, your copywriting should be direct and utilize data in your favor.
  • The fourth stage, Retention, is all about engagement. At this point, the campaign’s focus is to maintain and nurture active relationships. You can share new products/services or upgrades and engage your customers in company activity through newsletters and other content that is relevant to their interests. Your company values should be clear to your customers.
  • And finally, during the Advocacy stage, the marketing department creates spaces where customers can publicly share their experiences with your brand, and makes reward programs to recognize customer loyalty.

Companies have used these practices for ages. As mentioned above, the scope gets more complex depending on the size of the company and its growth ambition, but all parts play a central role in the marketing strategy.

For companies seeking to optimize the implementation of their marketing strategy and enhance their role in the customer journey, marketing automation platforms become great allies.

Adding Marketing Automation to Your Customer Journey

What Is Marketing Automation?

As defined by Salesforce, “Marketing automation is technology that manages marketing processes and multifunctional campaigns, across multiple channels, automatically.”

Basically, it allows you to automate manual and repetitive tasks, so you can scale processes and harness the power of data to generate highly personalized communications.

There’s plenty more to it, but you can learn more about its definition and benefits in a previous Tero by Nearsure blog post: Marketing Automation: Best Practices for Success.

Benefits of Implementing Marketing Automation in Your Customer Journey Stages

Along the customer journey, marketing creates many campaigns to carry out via different channels. Advanced platforms like Salesforce and Dynamics 365 provide you with various marketing automation tools to elevate these campaigns.

Before launching any campaign, it’s vital to segment your audience accordingly. CRMs like Salesforce and D365 provide large volumes of data retrieved from various sources: landing page forms, social media platforms, external data providers, e-commerce platforms, mobile apps, etc. They also enable you to segment this data with advanced and complex criteria. Thanks to their marketing tools and the list views they offer, you can filter and segment contacts based on multiple variables simultaneously, such as demographics, interests, behaviors, customer lifecycle stage, entry source, and much more.

Once segmented, you can create content specifically for each group that will resonate much more with their needs. The segmenting possibilities they provide are more precise than we could ever dream of if we were doing it manually, so we can create and send diverse messages in less time, optimizing our efforts and staying relevant with our communication. Plus, you get to add multiple personalization strings, upgrading the quality of the content at scale.

With advanced marketing automation tools, we get to generate journeys that depend directly on the user’s activity within our website or other touchpoints. This lets us take action in more precise and crucial moments. For example, we can set up an automated flow that is triggered when a person abandons a cart on our e-commerce website; the flow will automatically send them communications related to the product they were interested in but didn’t get to purchase. This is something you configure once and apply to many cases, activating at the right moment for each one, increasing the possibilities of conversion. We can do the same with order confirmations, subscription notifications, shipping notifications, and post-purchase surveys. These are all automated flows that you can customize to your company’s dynamic and that activate when certain conditions are fulfilled. These types of communications are vital in today’s digital world, as they transform a company and services into reliable and trustworthy opportunities.

Another thing worth mentioning is that marketing automation facilitates cross-channel marketing. You can ideate automated flows that combine messages and activities in multiple channels, such as email, text, social media, advertising, and more, all from the same platform.

Use Case: Marketing Automation at Work


Nicole initiates her customer journey in the awareness phase. She has a small coffee shop and is currently looking for new furniture. She decides to research online, finds a furniture company's website, and signs up for their newsletter to get more information.

This website uses marketing automation to track Nicole's sign-up, so she immediately receives a welcome email thanking her for subscribing. Over the next few days, she gets automated emails with the latest furniture collections. These emails keep her engaged and informed.


Nicole is now in the consideration phase. She's received valuable content from the furniture company and is actively trying to decide which set of chairs works best for her coffee shop.

The website tracks Nicole's interactions with different product pages. Based on her behavior, she is sent personalized emails that highlight the features of different chairs that match her interests. Automated follow-up emails include limited-time offers to encourage her to make a purchase.


Nicole is now ready to make a decision. She's narrowed down her choices to two chair models and is about to make a purchase decision.

She receives an automated email with user testimonials related to the two chair models she's considering. The email also includes a clickable CTA that takes her directly to the product page where she can make a purchase. After a day or two, she receives an automated reminder email about the limited-time offer she saw earlier.

Nicole ends up buying a set of chairs and receives an automated order confirmation email with details about her purchase, shipping, and estimated delivery date.

A few days later, she gets an email asking for her feedback on the buying process and the product itself.


From time to time, Nicole is sent automated emails with exclusive offers for loyal customers, encouraging her to purchase additional furniture that matches the style of the chairs she purchased before, like tables and centerpieces.

In addition, she receives emails that talk about the quality of the products from this company, the types of materials they use, and the ecological approach they promote. These communications teach her more about the company and its brand identity, and she feels connected to the values it promotes.


Nicole has been using the chairs in her coffee shop for a while now and is extremely satisfied with her purchase. She's become an advocate for the brand and its products.

The company identifies Nicole as a highly engaged and satisfied customer through her continued usage and positive feedback.

She receives an automated email thanking her for her loyalty and advocacy, which includes an invitation to join an exclusive customer advocacy program.

In this example, marketing automation played a crucial role in guiding Nicole through each phase of her customer journey, from awareness to loyalty. It provided her with the right information and incentives at the right times, ultimately leading to a successful conversion and ongoing customer engagement.


Today, thanks to the advanced technology and marketing automation tools from top-level CRMs such as Salesforce and Dynamics 365, marketing can make a greater impact on the customer journey.

Marketing automation throughout the customer journey means you can connect with potential clients more meaningfully and provide them with the right resources they need at the exact time and place.

While these tools do require some training to get the most out of them, they have user-friendly interfaces tailored to business users, making them the right option for upgrading your marketing strategy.

At Tero by Nearsure, we can help you generate your automated marketing flows. We’ll show you how to reach your audience in the best way possible, by generating necessary integrations, combining the right channels, and making the most of your data. We are experienced certified partners of Microsoft and Salesforce, and we apply best practices in everything we do. Contact us to get started!