4 Defined Customer TouchPoints that Connect You with Your Customers
Every small business owner wants to create customer experiences that retain customers. Too often, this very critical business planning process gets neglected.
Creating your own Customer Touch Point System can provide a step-by-step process that prevents you from losing touch with your customers. Whether you have local customers, or your business is regional or global, think in terms of being intentional when connecting with each customer.
Here are four defined Customer TouchPoints. At each TouchPoint, ask yourself the question: How can I create an opportunity? An opportunity to further enhance their experience with my company. See how you can apply these TouchPoints to your business.
1st Touch Point - turning a prospect into a customer
You've worked hard to create a relationship, and now your prospect is ready to become a customer. Here are some ideas on what you can do to make sure your new customer knows how much you value them. Remember, quality is more important than quantity.
Send a thank you gift and card - nothing fancy - perhaps a gift card to their favorite coffee shop
Call them to thank them for becoming a customer personally - remember that buyer’s remorse can set in pretty quickly so connecting soon after they have agreed to buy your product or service is critical
Find out what was the defining moment for them in selecting your business - give them a chance to talk more about their issues, their needs and how they feel you can help them
2nd Touch Point - learning more about the customer
After becoming a new customer, what is your opportunity to learn more about them, their business, their customers, their challenges?
Visit their location. If they aren't local, you may have to create a list of new customers to visit and plan it into your year.
Read up on their industry and share any information you find that may be of interest to them.
Ask if you can talk to one or two of their customers to even better understand your customer's value chain.
3rd Touch Point - during their experience in receiving your product or service
It's easy to get caught up in the delivery of the product or the service. Take time to intentionally explore opportunities to connect with your customer during the work phase or the delivery phase. This time can be stressful so find ways to lessen the stress for your customer.
Find time outside of the project experience to talk to your customer about how they are feeling about the process.
Send them progress updates regularly in writing.
Ask specific questions about their expectations.
Point out areas that you think are working well and identify areas you'd like to improve.
4th Touch Point - after the delivery of your product or service
Your goal is to exceed customer expectation and create a remarkable experience to retain, get referrals, and get testimonials from customers. What is your opportunity to reconnect with the customer after the project or the service ends?
Send a personal thank you. Reiterate the value you delivered and the outcomes you provided.
Ask for that referral.
Interview the customer to find out what they felt went well and where improvement could have been made.
If we can help define a customer's experience, instead of just allowing it to unfold, everyone wins. By creating an intentional customer service strategy, you will solidify relationships and improve your business at each interaction.
Shohreh R Aftahi, PhD