Experimenting with Twitter

Kadir Topal

4

Next week we are starting an experiment: reaching out to Firefox users on Twitter and offering them help in an environment where they might not expect it. A huge number of people are actively engaged in social networks, where they speak their mind and share what’s bothering them. When they experience a problem with Firefox, they might just post a tweet and express their frustration instead of finding their way to SUMO and getting help with their issue. This presents several problems for us:

  1. If a users feels frustrated enough to write about it, that’s bad. She should get help no matter where she is.
  2. Twitter has hundreds of millions of users but only a small minority of users find their way to SUMO. If we actively monitor it, we could extract better metrics about the most common problems with Firefox,
  3. Social networks make it very easy for issues to become viral. That changes the perception of Firefox in a disproportionate way.

Several companies are already active on social networks.  Customers, who usually don’t expect a company to be proactive about support, really appreciate this kind of outreach.  This should also make it much easier to communicate with people once they move to our official support channels.

Twitter

We therefore have 3 objectives with this experiment:

  1. Reach out to users who need help, using little snippets that could solve their problems. Long-term, we want to reach close to 100% of all users.
  2. Get a better understanding of the current perception of Firefox and the biggest problems users experience, and act upon that information.
  3. Prevent issues from becoming viral by intercepting and channeling to SUMO if help is not possible through Twitter.

You can read more about our plan on the wiki page. We are doing this as an experiment next week to gather more information.  In the long term, we are also very much interested in integrating social networks into SUMO itself, so look out for more information about how you can participate in the next few weeks.  Let us know in the contributors forum if you want to share your own ideas.