Touchpoints are the moments when the sender reaches the receiver and moves him emotionally.
The intention of effective communication is that the receiver feels touched. A touchpoint thus influences knowledge and attitude.
Touchpoints and customer journey are often mentioned in the same sentence. The customer journey can be presented as a funnel. Fish swim in the funnel, are lured deeper and deeper into it and can no longer escape. In this way, customers are drawn deeper into the customer journey and can no longer escape the will of the company.
Touchpoints versus Potential Touchpoints
- A Customer Journey indicates the emotional journey the target group makes during its interaction with a brand; touchpoints are important moments in this.
- Looking from the point of view of the target group you can imagine which possible touchpoints there are: even if the members of the target group are not yet customers.
In addition to investigating which existing touchpoints there are, it is therefore useful to investigate which potential touchpoints there are: where does the target group come, which media does it use, etc. You can think of this for example by describing a Day in the Life of the Persona.
Immerse yourself in the target group. Think about possible touchpoints. These can also be less obvious touchpoints. For example:
- If the persona is going to the gym, then you might be able to create a touchpoint here. Think of giving training, putting down folders or putting up an advertisement on the bulletin board.
- Is he taking the bus? Advertisements can hang on the bus, a clown can get on the bus and tell something about the brand. There can be advertisements on the bus, and a poster in the bus shelter.
- On the street he may meet a clown or a sandwich man. Or he can see people wearing a T-shirt with a print about the brand or about the topic of the campaign, these T-shirts can also have a QR code that links to a site about the brand / topic.
- Questions for finding and using (Potential) Touchpoints
- Questions about Reaching: Finding Touchpoints
- Questions about Touching: use of found Touchpoints
- Questions about Media
- Finding Effective and Creative Solutions with Potential Touchpoints
- Touchpoints and Brand Experience
- Brand Experience tips
- Inside-out and Outside-in, conversion and fans
- Inside-out: increase conversion
- Outside-in: more fans
- Overview: conversion or fans
- Touchpoint Dashboard: optimising Customer Journey with existing Touchpoints
- Optimising touchpoints from within the Organisation
- Provide a clear message and desired associations
- At every touchpoint: attract attention, hold attention, exit velocity
Questions for finding and using (Potential) Touchpoints
Questions about Reaching: Finding Touchpoints
- Where can you reach the potential receiver if he is looking for the information you want to give him?
- ditto: if he is not looking.
- Where can you reach him online?
- Where can you reach him offline?
Questions about Touching: use of found Touchpoints
- How can you touch the potential recipient so that he / she pays attention to your message?
- How can you touch the potential recipient so that he is encouraged to do the behavior you want?
Questions about Media
- What media, events and activities can you think of to use the touchpoints?
- What existing resources, events and activities already exist to utilise the touchpoints?
Finding Effective and Creative Solutions with Potential Touchpoints
Think from the target group (outside-in), instead of the standard solutions that are now used as means to reach and influence the target group, because they are often not the most effective and efficient.
How do you devise media with touchpoints?
- Think of a persona for the target group.
- Think of a Day in the Life of this Persona.
- Analyse which potential touchpoints there are in this day / week.
- Now think about what information you need to describe a persona based on facts. (You get this information through research, such as interviews and surveys.)
- Also consider what information you should ask the target group to describe a day / week in their life. (You get this information through research, such as interviews and surveys.)
- Do your research.
- Now re-describe the persona and a Day in the Life of the Persona.
- Then consider which media and activities can make the subject of the campaign relevant for the recipient: why should he pay attention to your content and your message at that moment and in that environment (offline and online)?
Touchpoints and Brand Experience
The touchpoints are the contact points where interaction takes place between the brand and the customer. During the interaction, the customer experiences the brand, so this is where the Brand Experience originates. At the touchpoints, the customer must therefore feel emotionally touched, so that he is enticed deeper into the customer journey. The person will then increasingly behave like the ideal customer that the company has in mind. Other roles that the person could play are less important; such as user, citizen, etc. (The customer is made more personal with a Persona, this makes it easier to think about how the brand experience can be improved for him / her.)
Brand Experience tips
Here are some potential touchpoints with tips on how to optimise them for a better Brand Experience, leading to a desired brand image.
- Commercial vehicle / Truck. Think of this as a moving billboard.
- These cars drive to important target groups / stakeholders and can therefore convey a message to them. (The car itself already gives a message, for example: “This is a successful company”; “Our high prices are necessary to be able to afford our expensive cars”.)
- Along the way, the brand can reach a general audience with it. So make sure you have a clear slogan and appealing colours and pictures.
- Introductory meeting. Provide: Attention – Interest – Desire Action (AIDA).
- Environment of the building (office, shop, etc.). Is the building easy to find? How can it be better indicated in the area where the company is located?
- Packing. Apple shows you how to make unpacking its products an experience. For example, it deliberately takes quite a long time before the box is open.
Inside-out and Outside-in, conversion and fans
Inside-out: increase conversion
In the first place, the company looks from itself (inside-out): What is the organizational or marketing objective; either:
What problem does the company have and how can the customer help solve this problem?
For example, a problem could be that the company is making less profit than it seems possible.
From this inside-out vision, the company mainly looks at the existing touchpoints between the company and the customer. These touchpoints are optimised, which increases conversion. This means that more people who come into contact with the touchpoints conceived will behave like customers, namely: that they will buy something from the company.
Outside-in: more fans
Instead of starting with the business goals and problems, you can also start with people and delve into their behaviour and problems: outside-in. From this outside-in vision you can think about how the company can help solve the problems and thus add value to people’s lives. A company that really helps people will get fans.
Overview: conversion or fans
|Increase conversion||More fans|
|Purpose||To lead a larger proportion of customer contacts to purchase.||Get more people in touch with the brand and love it.|
|Research||Mapping the Customer Journey.||Potential Touchpoints.|
|Mapping||How does the persona experience the Customer Journey (in the funnel)||Day in the life of persona (outside the funnel) & Conclude potential Touchpoints.|
|Conclusion||What can be improved in the experience of the target group?||How can the brand become relevant to the target group?|
|Inside-out / Outside-in||Inside-out.||Outside-in.|
Touchpoint Dashboard: optimising Customer Journey with existing Touchpoints
Optimising touchpoints from within the Organisation
In the paragraphs below you can read how you can optimise the touchpoints from the point of view of the Organisation and its Brands (inside-out). In addition, look outside-in at the possible touchpoints that the target group has with the Organisation and its Brands.
Provide a clear message and desired associations
Make sure the Brand sends out a clear message, creating a clear Brand Image and brand preference. Because people form an image of the brand anyway; people put brands in a category anyway, so make sure your brand is put in the category you want. So provide the desired associations.
At every touchpoint: attract attention, hold attention, exit velocity
The potential receiver has to divide his attention over the many stimuli and transmitters that surround him, and he can only focus his attention on something for a short time. Therefore, optimise the following sub-processes at each touchpoint (inspired by Steve Woodruff on BrandDrivenDigital.com):
- Attract attention. For example, by presenting a problem of the target group and the solution that the brand offers. This is the core of a story.
- Hold attention. Provide a core message / metaphor that people remember and pass on to each other, for example during the coffee break or in a meeting.
- “Exit Velocity”. After the interaction with the brand (at the touchpoint), the recipient must be so enthusiastic that he wants to share his experience / story with others.