Interactions are Opportunities
The best brands translate well to a variety of customer interactions. Each time a customer encounters the brand is an opportunity to remind, inform, deliver, and delight. Large organizations with literally thousands of touchpoints require flexible programs with clear guidelines. A graphic identity can be applied to everything from paper cups to ocean liners. Smaller companies may not have as many requirements, but the same logic applies – even the smallest business has invoices and a website, and these touchpoints merit consideration.
Customer Experience Alignment
Each customer interaction or touchpoint either helps build, or erodes the perception goal. Each interaction should be designed in a way that is mindful of the others but should also stand on its own as a memorable, effective experience.
Mapping all customer touchpoints may seem overwhelming, but not all touchpoints are created equal. Depending on your position, certain key touchpoints – those that are critical for keeping brand promises– are important to identify at the outset.
Organizations often fail to view touchpoints as a linear progression from the customer’s point of view. Too many touchpoint activities are produced to meet internal expectations and result in incongruent customer experiences.
Not all touchpoints are the same, nor do they have equal value. Some interactions happen almost all at once and, therefore, require greater continuity than those that exist separately. Some touchpoints occur regularly, which implies a kind of rhythm, while others are ad hoc, providing a little splash of surprise. Some touchpoints may be overlooked by customers, while others directly influence their buying decision.
Most importantly, remember that a customer’s experience with a brand is a linear experience through their perspective – not your department, or medium, or budget. Each interaction is a qualitative judgment. Their perception is shaped every time they touch the brand.