Every business signposts its work. For example, marketing, which seeks to attract new prospects, describes the problems the business addresses, and offers solutions.
In my mentoring sessions clients discuss the signposting they should be using. I’m always keen to understand the purpose behind the actions they are considering. We explore all the signposting and how it fits in for the message they seek to deliver. How every communication provides the explicit information it was designed for. There is always, also, implicit signposting to a whole range of things. They might inform working style and approach, or the nature of products and services that the recipient might also consider. The best consider the whole customer journey and question how things should be designed to be consistent.
Context and relevance
I travelled recently from my home near Bristol to a small holiday cottage in Cornwall. At the start of my journey, my destination wasn’t on any of the signs. The general direction was – “The South West” and I knew we were on the right road. Only later do I get the signposts that guided me down ever smaller roads to the front door. Inside there were more ‘signposts’ telling me how to use the cooker or adjust the heating. That’s long after I bought the holiday when I needed information to ensure that the property met my wishes.
In business too, consider what we should be signposting and when it should be provided. Often there is not enough clarity. The reason some signposting fails to work as well as it could, is that it confuses, causing people to go down cul-de-sac’s and make u-turns. If we try to show the whole route the chances are that the reason a prospect came to look in the first place will be lost in the detail.
Strategic signposts are thought through communications, designed for, and used, at every stage of the process. From the moment a new prospects first sees the business to the ongoing follow up with past clients whose projects are long finished, there is clarity. As a result they know you have thought through this communication, and made it relevant and consistent for them. Clients see your branding, style, accessibility, and approach. Consequently they trust your professionalism. They trust you and your business. Naturally, it helps them to make the right decisions faster, more reliably, and with purpose.
Have you looked at how you are being seen by others recently? What signposts have you put up? (and which should you take down?)