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Resourceful Designer podcast: Offering tips, tricks and advice for starting and growing your graphic or web design business.

How good are your Touchpoints?

You know the saying you’re only as strong as your weakest link? When it comes to the success of your design business, you’re only As Strong As Your Weakest Touchpoint.

What is a touchpoint?

Touchpoints happen every time someone interacts directly with your brand. Touchpoints are the pivotal gateways when a potential client decides whether they want to take the next step towards working with you or to back away and look elsewhere. It doesn't matter how good a designer you are, if you have touchpoints that fail, you may be losing potential clients before they even get a chance to discover how great you are.

Take inventory of your touchpoints.

There are many touchpoints to ever business. They include everything from your website to business cards, flyers, any blog posts you write, and any advertising you do. They also include your voicemail message, your tradeshow presence, and the clothing you wear. Touchpoints include anything a potential client comes in “touch” with before, during and after they meet you.

Simply having touchpoints is not good enough. Each one of them must properly represent your brand because they are where potential clients will form opinions of you and your business.

In order to evaluate your touchpoints, it may help if you take a step back and look at your brand from an unbiased perspective. You are used to seeing your business from your side. But how does the world see you and your business?

All touchpoints matter.

When it comes to your business, every touchpoint matters. But if every touchpoint matters, then how do you manage each touchpoint so that it properly reflects your brand? The answer can be found in a three-step process.

  1. List
  2. Evaluate
  3. Take Action

Managing your touchpoints through this formula will make sure each touchpoint is optimized, satisfies its need, and is inviting to clients.

Step 1) List your touchpoints

Start off by listing all of the current touchpoints you can think of. The key word here is “all.” Include things like;

  • your website
  • your emails address and email signatures
  • your marketing material including business cards and stationery
  • Any advertising you do
  • your voicemail and phone greeting
  • your vehicle
  • your office space
  • your personal appearance
  • any others you can think of

Once you’ve listed all your touchpoints, you then need to evaluate each one based on your brand.

Step 2) Evaluate your touchpoints

Once you have your list, you need to evaluate each touchpoint individually.

It might be easier if you have someone else do this for you because the goal is to find the weaknesses in your touchpoints. If you do it yourself you may tend to overlook any failures. The purpose of this discovery phase is to help you to find the opportunities so you can make improvements.

Remember, a touchpoint may not be bad, but it may have room to improve.

Step 3) Take Action

Once you've discovered which touchpoints are your weakest links, you can now take the necessary steps to improve them. Keep in mind that any deficits you found are actually opportunities to better your brand image. The smallest details can influence someone’s decision on whether or not they want to work with you.

Evaluating touchpoints is an ongoing task

Now that you have your list of touchpoints, set yourself reminders to revisit them on a regular basis to see if there are new ways to improve them. As technology changes, so will the effectiveness of each touchpoint.

Some helpful, powerful tools you can use are customer evaluations and site surveys. Ask your current clients for help evaluating your touchpoints. Remember that this is not about a single touchpoint, but about all of them. Take the time to evaluate them individually and as a group.

When it comes to marketing yourself and your design business, every touchpoint is an opportunity to attract new clients and grow your business.

When was the last time you evaluated your touchpoints?

Let me know your thoughts on this subject by leaving a comment for this episode.

Questions of the Week

Submit your question to be featured in a future episode of the podcast by visiting the feedback page.

This week’s question comes from Summer

When I am designing logos and need to purchase a font for it, do I buy the license for myself or do I buy it for the client the logo is for? I would not be giving the font to the client, only an outlined vector file of the final logo (plus jpeg, png and so forth). In these situations, who should own the license?

To find out what I told Summer you’ll have to listen to the podcast.

Resource of the week Peek by UserTesting

UserTesting.com provides qualitative research by real people when testing your website, app, prototypes, wireframes, email campaigns and more. You can even test your competitors’ sites.

Tests are performed by real people in the right target market and provide valuable insights on how people interact with your products. After the test, you get video, audio and written feedback that can help you spot inadequacies you wouldn't otherwise know about.

UserTesting has a free service called Peek that gives you a short 5 minutes sample of the power of UserTesting. Get your free 5-minute evaluation at peek.usertesting.com

Episode Sponsors

Thank you to this week's sponsors.

Save on Millions of stock photos, vectors and more with an exclusive deal for Resourceful Designer listeners by visiting http://storyblocks.com/resourcefuldesigner.

Take control of your band with Brandfolder, the solution for digital brand assets. Get a 90-day free trial by visiting http://brandfolder.com/resourcefuldesigner

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I want to help you.

Running a graphic design or web design business all by yourself isn't easy. If there are any struggles you face running your design business please reach out to me. I'll do my best to help you by addressing your issues in a future blog post or podcast episode here at Resourceful Designer. You can reach me at feedback@resourcefuldesigner.com