The Challenge:

Hootsuite, the most widely used social media management platform, is loved by over 15 million users around the world and trusted by more than 800 of the Fortune 1000. With a growing customer base and a need to handle a rising volume of issues, they needed to move off their legacy support community platform quickly.

“As of April 2016, we’ve seen an incredible increase of 53X in active community users.”

-Gabrielle Maheux,
Social Channel Lead

Typical support inquiries for Hootsuite range from how-tos, troubleshooting issues, bugs and product feedback. To support this, their strategy encompassed a multi-channel social customer self-service center.

One of the challenges in engaging customers, especially on social media, lies in identifying and solving complex issues which needed agent help versus the simple problems that could have been deflected or solved by the community.

They needed a proven partner that could easily and seamlessly migrate them off their legacy platform within 60 days while meeting stringent support requirements. And they had to do so without impacting their general customer satisfaction ratings and self-service goals.

The Solution:

  • An intuitive user experience for both their desktop and mobile customers.
  • A multilingual platform to support their global customer-base.
  • The ability to migrate off their legacy platform without losing any data.
  • A strong gamification engine to reward top contributors.
  • Meet their stringent security requirements.
  • Integrates seamlessly with their ZenDesk ticketing system.


Driving Self-Service Ratios Up:

Soon after the successful migration, Gabrielle Maheux, Social Channel Lead for Hootsuite, and part of the support operations team, was brought onboard to help manage their social self-service channels. This encompasses Twitter, Facebook and the Vanilla support community to answer their customers’ most pressing support questions.

“As of April 2016, we’ve seen an incredible increase of 53X in active community users compared to when we came onboard in June of 2015. Our customers find the community to be easy to use and are able to ask and find answers to their questions quickly.

One unexpected benefit is that 90% of new visits to our support community comes from Google organic search. By my estimates, roughly 10-15% of all questions asked are answered by other Hootsuite users and ambassadors.”

Her mandate is to ensure that customer questions are answered quickly and efficiently across all her channels with a goal of the vast majority of users solving their issues through self-help.

They created the self help ratio based on calculations of the percentage of people getting help from the forum than through direct customer support channels. Maheux analyzed key metrics such as their self-help ratio (new discussions, comments, questions, forum pageviews and help desk article pageviews) compared against active help metrics. She looked at the number of tickets active in Zendesk or customer conversations in Twitter that were solved relative to the amount of pageviews within the self-help forum.

The more pageviews (which indicates engagement) in the forum, the more their self-help ratio is positively affected. This frees her team to focus on delivering a more proactive support initiatives. She shares: “Our community allows us to be proactive about what our customers will be asking us. I look at what pages are most visited on the forum, how many are asking the same questions, and how can we deflect those questions by offering answers and helpful articles.”

“We’re keenly aware that support issues resolved online through self-service cost far less than phone and email. This is why our goals are tied to driving support through our online community without compromising on quality of service while keeping it expedient and human.”