Back in the day, all you had to do was produce a quality product, and you had loyal customers for life. All you needed to do was to get someone to make one purchase. Usually, you found a consumer through a newspaper ad, a billboard, or a door-to-door salesperson.

Today, customer service and brand image have multiple points of contact with a consumer throughout the customer pipeline. For example:

  • Before a Sale – A consumer may follow your sbrand on social media. They may read reviews of your product online. They may hear about your product through a friend. They could see an ad on TV, on a social site, while streaming video, or on another website.
  • When Purchasing Your Product – The customer will either be interacting with the sales team at your store, your eCommerce site, a phone system, or a catalog.
  • After Becoming a Customer – Now the customer is concerned with billing and product support. You may also contact them for email marketing campaigns, to thank them for their patronage, or to offer further service and support.

Having so many points of contact may help keep a consumer engaged and bring them back to your brand over and over again. It may even result in acquiring brand advocates. There is one downside to having so many points of contact, however.

You now also have more opportunities to provide one disappointing experience that may trump selling a quality product.

Unfortunately, that’s how things go in a world where people have so many things that the items themselves are forgettable, and the experience is what truly matters. It only takes one rude person on a customer service call to transform an advocate into someone who tells others to run screaming from your business. A mistake in billing can lose you a customer forever. An offensive tweet can turn public opinion against your brand as a whole.

More than ever, brands have to be on their toes at all times to offer a great experience during every step of the customer lifecycle. That’s the only way to ensure that a customer will come back, regardless of how good your product is.