The Steel Bridge in Ruby's hometown of Portland, Oregon

A few months ago, my brand new roommate and I were chatting on the front porch. We didn’t know much about each other yet so when he asked me what I do, I began to proudly tell him about my position as the Training Creator at Ruby Receptionists. He stopped me. “No way! You’re Ruby? I’m a client!” He shared that he doesn’t usually receive phone calls due to the nature of his position, and that he had never actually spoken with a single Ruby employee before. Despite all that, we still left quite the impression!

As an accountant, his only contact with Ruby had been through the invoices we sent him every month. Believe it or not, several details on the invoice, specifically our company name and logo, caught his eye. He said,

Every month I get this bill from you guys, and I’ve wondered, ‘’So, what exactly are we paying these guys for again? Who even cares? If that isn’t the cutest dang invoice I’ve ever seen I don’t know what is.’’

The version of Ruby he’d conjured up in his mind was based solely on these invoices, and it was shockingly close to the real thing. He’d envisioned a friendly, endearing receptionist named Ruby — a symbol of yesteryear when providing an excellent, personalized customer experience meant everything to a business.

The story is a powerful lesson in touchpoints: Every interaction a business and customers may possibly have. They include everything from the products and services provided right down to the color of the walls in the restroom. The experience with my new roommate proved to me what many already knew — that every single touchpoint, no matter how big or small, has the potential to shape ideas about the company it represents and what it stands for.

Identify all the customer touchpoints for your business and ask yourself if they’re conveying the right message to your customers and potential customers. You might be surprised at what you find! After all, even something as small and seemingly insignificant as the look of an invoice is an opportunity to make the impression you want.

Photo of the Steel Bridge in Portland, Oregon via Flickr user Paul Trafford