I'm sure you have all heard the term touchpoints, and if you haven't - well get to it already!
The simplest definition for a touchpoint: where your clients and business connect, and having a business means you have them: lots of them.
Here are just a few:
Each of them should be well thought out in design, congruent with each others design and highly effective towards inviting and welcoming potential clients into your business.
And yes, things like pricing and face-to-face are touchpoints to your business. They are just two of the many contacts that your clients have with you and your business.
You have to understand that every one of your touchpoints is a message to your clients about who you are, what you do and where you fit in to their needs. Not only that, but the message also tells your clients where they fit in with your business.
If you think this list is a lot to go over, you're right. Yet this is a relatively small list and is only a summary of what you will actually cover.
Let me show you.
You build a website. Check. You have a welcome page, some of your work, contact info, maybe some fun music playing and a slideshow of your favorite work.
Great! You're done with that touchpoint right? WRONG.
How did you design it to create the message you are trying to convey? You must go over things like colors used, branding, presentation, navigation, product placement, welcome and a minutiae of other information that is crucial - but worth it.
My website has bothered me in the past. Something was always missing until I sat down and actually started asking myself the right questions about this important touchpoint(Sidenote: All touchpoints are important).
First I corrected the color scheme. My branding colors are white, black and vibrant green. I knew that I liked the green because it was vibrant but I didn't want the site to come off too "green & grey" feeling, so I decided right away that other colors would eventually be used and those other accented colors would have to be as vibrant as the green to keep the style and feel the same.
That's when I looked at my slideshow. The website has a built-in slideshow at the top. Normally I would put in some of my best work, but after watching the images slide by I realized that there was subject matter there that I was no longer looking to shoot - and therefore irrelevant to the slideshow.
I decided to remove all of the slideshow images and do something different.
Realizing that my slideshow was a touchpoint within a touchpoint (confused yet?), I decided that I wanted to use it to show my clients specific products in an attractive way without directing them to a sales pitch. Luckily, I know Photoshop quite well and within a few minutes I had 3 different images for my slideshow (so far) that show work from each of my relevant genres and display them within multiple products on consistently vibrant colored backgrounds.
Check them out:
How did I feel after these subtle - yet crucial changes?
It's true! I haven't felt this good about the stability and focus of my website in a long time. Of course it isn't perfect, but it is getting there and I can actually feel the change of moving forward as I go through these steps.
One great thing is that when my site needs an update, I won't be floundering on which direction to go with it because I know which questions to ask myself.
Oh, and there was another advantage to this - it made me more creatively inventive.
Right after the update, I began to think of an image that I had shot earlier in the year. It had always reminded me of the story of Dorian Gray.
So I took that image and created a movie poster out of it - fun and creative! Exactly why I got into this business!!
|Model: Spencer Robertson. Also click for a larger view and see who stars in the production.|
So check out your touchpoints. Methodically. Patiently. Let them wax over your mind for a while until you can use them best to your advantage and then execute.
What are some touchpoints that are bigger struggles to overcome? Do you have some unique touchpoints? Tell me about them and let's try to figure out how to make them work!
Michael Carty Email