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Serving the Social Customer: Scaling Your Support For Twitter, Facebook and More


By 2014, Gartner Research estimates that social networking services will replace email as the primary communications vehicle for 20 percent of business users – and for many people this is already the …

By 2014, Gartner Research estimates that social networking services will replace email as the primary communications vehicle for 20 percent of business users – and for many people this is already the case. As you connect to customers in social channels, a key question is – how can you scale that communication? If you have only a few people monitoring Twitter, what do you do when they go home? As you successfully interact with people on Twitter, how do you handle the growth?

Do you hire a whole new group of people to “tweet”? Or do you look at how appropriate forms of automation can help you scale your interaction?

In this presentation, Voxeo's Dan York explores how Voxeo’s tools and platforms can help you scale your usage of social channels. You will learn how to:

Monitor a Twitter account and take action on incoming messages or mentions.
Send urgent notifications via SMS or voice based on certain keywords that appear in tweets.
Craft appropriate automatic responses based on what customers send via Twitter.
Use an automated app can assist the person monitoring a Twitter account in collecting information to provide a response.
Tie your social interaction into the same analytics and application used for other communication channels like voice, SMS, IM, and mobile web.
Plus you will get a view of how these services can be extended to other social services like facebook.

Published in Technology , Business
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  • 2. Logistics!  Please ask questions through the GoToWebinar interface.  Twitter hashtag: #voxeo  Sample app source code online: •  Archive will be available at: •© Voxeo Corporation
  • 3. “Social networking services will replace email as the primary vehicle for communications for 20 percent of business users by 2014” - Gartner Research Source: ComputerWorld UK, Nov 15, 2010© Voxeo Corporation
  • 4. The Generation Difference!Prefer to receive SMS alerts when checking order status, deliveryupdates, etc.! 40.00% 35.00% 30.00% 25.00% 18-24 20.00% 25-34 35-44 15.00% 45-54 55+ 10.00% 5.00% 0.00% Strongly Agree Somewhat Agree Neither Agree Somewhat Strongly Dont Know / Not nor Disagree Disagree Disagree Sure Source:  Opus  Research  Consumer  Preference  survey  (2010,  n=985)  © Voxeo Corporation
  • 5. In the past 6 months, when shopping for goods and services, I have consulted with friends on social networks! Source:  Opus  Research  Consumer  Preference  survey  (2010)  © Voxeo Corporation
  • 6. © Voxeo Corporation
  • 7. Why Twitter?!  Stay tuned into the customers voice (CRM)  Support the communication channels in demand by the masses (CRM)  Foster loyal and engaged customers (CRM)  Word-of-mouth / viral marketing (PR, Marketing)  Negative publicity / damage control (PR)  Conscious marketing presence so the organization is not viewed as operating in the past (Marketing)© Voxeo Corporation
  • 8. What happens if you are successful?! HOW DO YOU SCALE YOUR SUPPORT FOR TWITTER?!© Voxeo Corporation
  • 9. Scaling Options!  Hire a team of tweeters  Force your existing team into 24x7  Ignore all tweets outside of “work” hours – or reply later  Integrate Twitter messages into your existing contact center  Apply an appropriate level of automation© Voxeo Corporation
  • 10. BEWARE OF THE TWITTER-BOT BACKLASH!© Voxeo Corporation
  • 11. About Voxeo!  Founded in 1999  World’s largest hosted VoiceXML and CCXML platform – Over 82,000 hosted ports globally; hundreds of premise deployments  Over 200,000 developers using Voxeo platforms  The Voxeo difference: Unlocked Communications, Customer Obsession Teams, Communications Passion© Voxeo Corporation
  • 12. One World, One Platform! Single View Voxeo Prophecy Hosting Slough, UK Frankfurt, Germany Las Vegas, NV Atlanta, GA Orlando, FL Hong Kong Singapore Patented multi-tenant, virtualized architecture – 82,000 ports and growing Optimized for real-time communication© Voxeo Corporation
  • 13. Unified Self-Service™!   One application investment   Multiple communication channels   One deployment platform – or use your platform of choice   Improved, accelerated ROI   Any tool, programming paradigm or language   Voxeo compatibility modes for porting existing applications© Voxeo Corporation
  • 14. Design Once – Deploy Anywhere! Real-time caller preferences, location, responses Voice Video Text Mobile Web IM Two-Way SMS Personalized Dialogs and Visual Display Account Activity User Purchase Other Information History Preferences History Information© Voxeo Corporation
  • 15. Two Solutions For Twitter!© Voxeo Corporation
  • 16. Voxeo Labs, Unlocking the Path to Innovation© Voxeo Corporation
  • 17. Cloud Communications Service© Voxeo Corporation
  • 18. Tropo and Twitter!  Twitter treated as simply another text channel •  Same app can also use voice, SMS, IM  Tropo app can be attached to a Twitter account •  Uses the OAuth authentication process, i.e. you need to be logged into the Twitter account to approve the access for your Tropo app  Tropo sees both “replies” and “mentions” •  @voxeo This service is very cool! •  Sitting in an informative @voxeo webinar!© Voxeo Corporation
  • 19. Tropo Scripting!
  • 20. © Voxeo Corporation
  • 21. Tropo Scripting!  Your app runs in the Tropo cloud. •  Is also typically hosted in the Tropo cloud.  Similar to Google App Engine.  Access to most language libraries.  SIMPLE. EASY.© Voxeo Corporation
  • 22. DEMO TIME! GET READY TO TWEET!!© Voxeo Corporation
  • 23. Example 1: Simple Reply App!  Blindly sends back canned response  Try it out: @tropohello <anytext>  Sample code (JavaScript):say ("Hello there, @"+currentCall.callerID+". Thank you! ");© Voxeo Corporation
  • 24. Replies vs Mentions!  A “reply” has your Twitter ID at the beginning: •  @voxeo Your support team rocks!  A “mention” includes your Twitter ID: •  Listening to a @Voxeo developer jam session.  For a reply, Tropo removes your Twitter ID from the beginning of the message •  Allows multi-channel apps to treat tweets as they would any other IM or SMS message  To differentiate, you can test for the presence/ absence of your Twitter ID© Voxeo Corporation
  • 25. Example 2: Night Service!  If the tweet: 1) is a reply; and 2) arrives between certain hours, send back a response saying the office is currently closed •  Mentions are ignored because the message was not “to” us.  Try it out: @stratohelp <anytext>  Note: Tropo servers are set for UTC – you need to factor that into your hour calculations.  Sample code (python): •  The final “else” could be left off, in which case the app will take no action.from datetime import *if currentCall.initialText.find("@stratohelp") == -1: if not in range(12,21) : say("Our offices are currently closed. Please ...") else: say("Our offices are open. Well reply back to you soon.")© Voxeo Corporation
  • 26. Example 3: Keyword Actions/Alerts!  Sends out SMS alerts based on keywords or Twitter replies with appropriate links  Try it out: @tropohelp <text>  Rules: •  If Twitter account is mentioned in a tweet with the word “fail”, in either case, send an SMS alert (which goes to my phone) •  If the message is a reply and includes the word: •  “help” – reply with URL and send an SMS alert •  “faq” – reply with the URL to the FAQ •  “documentation” – reply with the URL to the documentation© Voxeo Corporation
  • 27. Example 3: Keyword Actions/Alerts!  Sends out SMS alerts based on keywords or replies with appropriate links  Try it out: @tropohelp <text>  Sample code (python):text = currentCall.initialText.lower()if text.find("fail") > -1: message("Whoa! " + currentCall.callerID + " is tweeting a fail", {"to":"tel:+14075551212", "network":"SMS"})elif text.find("@tropohelp") == -1: #Is it a reply? if text.find("help") > -1: say("Tropo lets you build apps ...") message("Tropo help request from: " + currentCall.callerID, {"to":"tel:+14075551212", "network":"SMS"}) elif text.find("faq") > -1: say("The Tropo FAQ is at") elif text.find("documentation") > -1: say("Tropo docs are at")© Voxeo Corporation
  • 28. Example 4: Twitter Contest!  Perform some action based on “secret password” or other text  Try it out: @ClubTropo Tropo Rocks!  Example merely sends back a different response, but could add information to a database or take some other action  See tropo-scripting/  Sample code (JavaScript):message = currentCall.initialText;if(message == "Tropo Rocks!"){ say("You just learned how to make a Twitter bot with @Tropo for free.Welcome to the club.");}else { say ("Say what? Try it again - send us a tweet with the correctpassword to get on the list.");}© Voxeo Corporation
  • 29. Example 5: Yahoo Weather!  Tweets back latest weather for US ZIP code  Try it out: @danweathertest <ZIPcode> •  @danweathertest 32801 •  @danweathertest 90210  Sample code (python): •  Multi-channel application: •  Voice: +1-407-374-3994 •  SMS: +1-407-374-3994 •  Skype Voice: +990009369991438833 •  SIP Voice: •  IM (Jabber):© Voxeo Corporation
  • 30. Scenario: Augmenting Human Agents!  Human agents and Tropo app can share the same Twitter account  Tropo app could: •  only reply at certain times (ex. night service) •  reply based on certain keywords •  gather necessary information so that human agent has all the info he/she needs to reply  Combination of human and app can get customers their information as fast as possible© Voxeo Corporation
  • 31. Some Notes About Twitter!  Twitter messages are restricted to 140 characters •  Your application needs to take care of splitting messages that are longer  Duplicate tweets are rejected (i.e. containing identical text sent to same Twitter account within a certain timeframe) •  You need to be aware of this in testing. Applies to both: •  Messages you send to your app •  Messages your app sends back to you  Direct Messages, Twitter Search and Public Timeline are not yet supported  Twitter is... well... not entirely reliable – nor is it realtime.© Voxeo Corporation
  • 32. Tropo WebAPI!
  • 33. Tropo WebAPI!  For developers who want more control and/or tighter back-end integration, including reporting and analytics  Twitter configuration identical to Tropo Scripting  Tropo connects to your web server© Voxeo Corporation
  • 34. Tropo WebAPI!  REST API •  Familiar request/response model, using JSON or XML  Full access to all language libraries, including custom development  Tropo WebAPI libraries available for: •  Ruby, PHP, Python, C#, Node.js •  Example apps in other languages: •  Go, Scala, Scheme, Erlang, ...© Voxeo Corporation
  • 35. A Different Way...!
  • 36. What if... !  you want to build very complex applications?  you want a solution that will be installed on your premise? behind your firewalls and in your data center?  you need to tie your social channels into your existing analytics and business intelligence software?  you have a development team that already uses the industry standard Eclipse IDE?  Answer.... VoiceObjects!© Voxeo Corporation
  • 37. Application Lifecycle Management! VoiceObjects Analyzer Load 1 Tester 6 2 testing Phone-less Design 5 Storyboard ManagerDebug Viewer, 3 GUI DesignTrace Viewer VoiceObjects 4 Desktop Project Documentation Storyboard Manager © Voxeo Corporation
  • 38. VoiceObjects Infostore and Analyzer!   Out-of-the-box Data Capture by VoiceObjects Server -  Dimensional Data model optimized for BI analysis -  Integrates with data from ASR, CTI, and CRM   Analysis and Reporting -  Based on standard business intelligence tools -  60+ predefined Reports, based on real-time data -  Extends existing Data Warehouse -  Includes Customer behavior and business analysis   Highest Rated Analytics Package in the Market VoiceObjects Analyzer Infostore (Business Objects, Cognos, MicroStrategy) CTI IVR CRM 3rd party Data Data Data Analysis Tools© Voxeo Corporation
  • 39. How to provision a Twitter app!   Steps to success: 1.  Create a VoiceObjects text application (or add a text layer to an existing voice application) 2.  Deploy it on a VoiceObjects Server 3.  Add an application within your IMified account a)  Configure URL to VoiceObjects Server b)  Add Twitter account 4.  Send initial message to start Twitter dialog© Voxeo Corporation
  • 40. Step 1+2: Create and Deploy!  Build normal IVR call flow in VoiceObjects  Adjust presentation layer: •  Output •  Input (Grammars)  ... but keep business logic & backend integration  Deploy© Voxeo Corporation
  • 41. 3: Create Application on IMified! 1. Create (free) IMified account 2. Create new Bot 3. Add to end of URL: &vsDriver=173&User-Agent=IMified instructs VoiceObjects Server to activate IMified mode 4. Go through Twitter activation process© Voxeo Corporation
  • 42. Wrapping Up!
  • 43. What Next For Twitter?!  Several ideas under consideration  Direct Messages •  Allow for private communication •  Requires “following” to be successful  Twitter Search  Public Timeline  What would YOU like to be able to do?© Voxeo Corporation
  • 44. On The Horizon - Facebook!  Facebook Chat is possible today... but basically useless for companies because of FB accounts restrictions  OpenGraph API now allows interaction with Facebook Pages that wasn’t possible before  Ideas under consideration: •  Monitor a Page and alert on new postings / comments or a new Like •  Posting of content to a Page  What would YOU like to be able to do?© Voxeo Corporation
  • 45. Next Steps!  Sign up for a free Tropo account: •  Download a free copy of VoiceObjects: •© Voxeo Corporation
  • 46. Resources!  Tropo – •  Documentation - •  Blog posts:  VoiceObjects – •  Developer site –  Unified Self-Service blog: •  Voxeo Labs •© Voxeo Corporation
  • 47. Next Developer Jam Session! Topic: Who you gonna call? Place and Receive Phone Calls from your Web Browser using PhonoSDK Date: December 16, 2010, 11am US Eastern© Voxeo Corporation