Long gone are the days when buyers had only little means to get to know about a company’s services through events, telephone, newspapers, radio, and television advertisements.
Digitalization heightened the buyer’s access to information about the products and services of companies. The buyers were in total control over whether a lead will be generated or not.
To face the challenges, businesses had to implement new strategies that not only included adapting to technology but also tweaking and tinkering the communication channels, and providing personalized services.
Points of Contact or Touchpoints
To improve customer satisfaction, the exchanges happening between marketers and buyers have to be observed intricately. These interactions, also called touchpoints, are essential for maintaining customer relationships.
Touchpoints determine whether a sales campaign is successful and whether it has made the customers informed enough to decide to buy. Read along to know more about the different types as observed by us.
Table of Contents
How do Touchpoints Work? How to Use Touchpoints? An Example
The several points of contact, that must be observed by the sales and marketing team, are provided as an example here.
An online academy spreads the word about its services and campaigns to the targeted audience through social media. This serves as the first point of contact by leveraging social media and promoting through ads.
As soon as a buyer shows their interest, they get in touch with the company with the help of the sales team. Customer queries are answered and solutions are proposed to their pain points. This contact is further extended post confirming the lead and buying process.
They set an example of a positive customer experience by being a patient and helpful sales rep, following up through emails. Decision time is set according to the comfort of the customer.
Positive and Negative Customer Experience
Customers who had a positive and outstanding experience are more likely to recommend the company’s services who gain more subscribers. It takes all of the above points of contact to get a successful purchase which happens in crucial moments in limited time when the sales rep triggers the desire in the customer.
Some of the negative customer experiences include rude employees, repetitive and ineffective sales calls, irrelevant content on websites, errors in loading content, lack of customer solutions, late deliveries, online transaction issues, and many others.
The nature of the product and the value it brings to the customer also have a direct impact on outcomes.
Product or Service Quality + Interaction Quality = Good Customer Experience
Customer Journey Mapping
Customer touchpoints align with the company’s objectives as they offer customized services. They are identified by customer journey mapping. Besides the marketing department, many departments such as sales, HR, and customer service indulge in contacting the customers.
The customer is not allowed to feel any gaps in their journey and it is in the hands of the company to integrate all functions of the departments. This is a reason why customer journey mapping plays a significant role in bringing good customer experience.
Three Benefits of Optimizing Customer Touchpoints in a B2B Company
As mentioned before, customer touchpoints vary at different stages: during product awareness, during sales, and after purchasing. These interactions are human, product-based, service-based, communication-based, spatial, and electronic.
Types of B2B Customer Touchpoints that can be Optimised to Improve Customer Satisfaction
Customer interaction happens through many communication channels, especially after the digitalization of businesses. The multiple touchpoint channels have complicated the buying process altogether.
1. Sales Calls and Consulting
It is a core service of a company and a direct form of communicating with a prospect. It is a traditional method that is now preceded by Advertising online. Cold calls, follow-up calls, and calls to thank them for their purchase or partnership are human interactions that are more trustworthy than chatbots.
B2B businesses provide information regarding trending topics in the market and their services using blogs. Websites are leveraged to sell their products and services as well as serve as a platform sought for valuable information.
Optimizing landing pages, product and pricing pages, blog posts, and linking your services to the website pages can help customers navigate easily and consider choosing your services.
3. Email Marketing
Email communication is a popular form as it enables the prospects to subscribe to their services which can be helpful for future sales. Newsletters are used to achieve this.
Advertisements are highly exploited to promote on Google and social media platforms using personalized ads such as Facebook ads, Google ads, and YouTube ads.
Businesses send out business cards to make their presence known to prospective clients. Special holiday cards and messages are sent out to build rapport with the customers who may also be in partnership with the company which makes it a partnership touchpoint.
5. Social Media Touchpoints
B2B Marketing involves using social media to perform social outreach. This is a marketing strategy to find partners, convince buyers to consider their products, and provide solutions to buyers. Promotional posts avail information to customers and quickly enter into the buying process.
Facebook Messenger is leveraged to communicate with customers and include them in the journey. Time plays a key role in these types of communication and AI features are used to automate some processes.
6. Transactional Touchpoints
They happen during the time of purchase after they decide to buy a service or product. This includes payment methods, transactions, and their success.
This touchpoint is aided by features like Internet banking which must happen with caution as errors can lead to losing the potential customer.
7. Customer Support
Interactions about orders, shipping, and delivery happen during this stage of communication as any queries can be raised within the supply chain field.
This interaction happens between customers and businesses or customer-to-customer. Feedback can be given through surveys, comments on webpages, and via sales calls where the sales rep collects it directly. It helps businesses understand the client’s needs. These parameters can be used as a measure of customer satisfaction.
A happy customer might use word-of-mouth to recommend the products and services they have purchased. This comes under trustworthy human interaction.
9. Community Touchpoint
Forums and groups are useful to share reviews about a purchase made by a customer.
Automating Touchpoints With GoZen
In a software era, automating marketing tasks is a long-term growth strategy that nurtures leads, and boosts sales and ROI. Missing out on this can make your company fall behind on scaling your marketing campaigns.
While examining touchpoints, one has to observe the cumulative experience instead of individual touchpoints as the entire experience of the customer is more important. The customer may be dissatisfied with the overall experience.
The companies that perform best in this area have a competitive edge over companies performing well in individual touchpoints.
By observing the touchpoints or interactions that happen with customers, businesses can draft strategies such as creating buyer personas, content generation based on that and improving communication channels. Assisting customers throughout their journey will mark the success of your campaigns and assure retention.