Definition of customer touchpoints for sales and marketing
Visitor or customer touchpoints are any way to collect information in order to qualify a lead. This pertains to sales and marketing cycles where some contact is needed to close or further a deal, for example in the B2B or personalised B2C sectors.
What are customer touchpoints?
In creating a Best Practice guide, we came across extensive literature on the subject, which we are summarising here. To begin with, there is currently a lengthy Wikipedia article running at 20 pages without references, and over 16,000 words. Let’s unpack that.
Goal: the point here is to understand that there are numerous points at which (potential) clients come into contact with brands (products & services). This is the buying / decision-making process, also called customer journey, and can refer to both B2C and B2B scenarios.
For purposes of lead generation, we are concerned with contact points through which decisions to purchase or not purchase are made.
Specific to identifying and nurturing leads, we recommend creating touchpoints that can be measured. In other words, touch points that involve some sort of interaction. Ideally, a touch-point will result in another piece of the puzzle being revealed, meaning that you learn something about your lead, and get a step further in the qualification process.
Definition: a ’visitor touchpoint’ refers to any way to collect information in order to qualify a lead.
We also call this enrichment; it means adding touch-points to your website (or other digital assets) which enrich the information that you have about leads. Please click here to see a list of examples with technical documentation: visitor touchpoints.
Using touchpoints in practice – examples for lead generation
Q: So what does this all mean in the context of nurturing leads?
A: It means an opportunity for companies to structure their information-gathering techniques.
Historically, lead generation technologies created techniques such as contact forms, demo calls, and product surveys for interacting with visitors. This has not changed. What has changed are the interaction points. This technology has been formalised into what is currently called Marketing Automation – which bundles all steps across the spectrum.
List of example touchpoints
- Trial sign-up
- Demo/ video
- PDF brochures / downloads
- Implementation / configuration/ enrichment
- Customisation process
- Feedback/ data analysis
- Automated report generation
- Email newsletters
- Contact form
- Login event
- (Social media) logins – meaning ‘login with Facebook’ or ‘login with LinkedIn’
- Social media sites and feeds
- For SaaS products, the website itself is the main touchpoint
Useful definitions from Wikipedia article on Touchpoints
“A touchpoint can be defined as any way a consumer can interact with a business, whether it be person-to-person, through a website, an app or any form of communication… Touchpoints allow prospective customers to become knowledgeable on the brand and the benefits offered and allow them to make a decision to whether they will buy the product or service.”
“Touch points are the first association that a customer has with a product or service offered by a company or individual and are the contact points between a customer and said provider of services. The touch point offers a link between the customer and the service, acting as a go between of what the customers wants and what the service provider is offering, providing a central service in the communication between customer and supplier. The touch point is the first interaction that a customer has with a company and that interaction is considered as the starting point of a customer journey.”
“The customer journey/experience is the full involvement that a customer has with a particular brand, starting at the first connection between customer and service, and ending with the purchasing of a product or service and the advocacy of said product or service to others.”
“Touch points provide the basis and foundations for information gathering techniques used by customers.”