Yet another reason I love Twitter


If you read this blog, you’re probably already following me on Twitter (@JasonBarile), and you probably already know that I really love Twitter.  I stumbled upon a new reason for loving it today – real time crowd sourcing of data for a bug triage session.  We were discussing some bugs in meeting today when the conversation turned to speculation about whether or a specific feature was “commonly used”.  Of course, that’s a subjective measure, so I decided to take a very subjective temperature check via Twitter.  Within 5 minutes, I got replies from 5 users who told me they never used the feature.

Granted, this isn’t a scientific approach at all.  I’m positive some users have used this particular feature in the past.  Some may even depend on it for critical business needs.  That said, the fact that everyone who responded said they haven’t used it tells me it’s not critical for a majority of our users, which was exactly the data point we needed at the time.

This was so much more efficient than saying “I’ll get back to you with some data in a couple of weeks”.  It helped us come to a quick decision and move on.  We’ll probably still follow up on this by talking with some of our customers to validate the decision, but the urgency of doing that is lower now because we already have a good idea of what the responses will be like.

Twitter brings you closer to more customers more faster.

Comments (4)

  1. Paul Jackson says:

    One of the reasons I don’t like statistics is shown in this example.  The method of collection can skew the results.

    This particular case may be fine, but basing a business decision like this on results from a single communication channel opens the possibility that the use of the feature (or not) is related to the channel.  

    The feature might be extensively used by non-Twitter users, which could be the majority of the application’s users.  

  2. Jason Barile says:

    I fully agree – this is not scientific and prone to all sorts of statistical skewing.

    That said, I think as long as you’re aware of that and understand the circumstances, the main point is that using Twitter is a great way to connect with customers directly and quickly.

  3. maesmith09 says:

    Twitter puts you in control and becomes a modern antidote to information overload.

    For me, Twitter is really a great help for businesses for fast communication and connection to valued customers.

    Incredibly useful!

  4. JavierCaceresAlvis says:

    Hello Jason,

    I’m the lead member of a community focused on Testing & Windows Mobile development in Bogota  – (Colombia). We organize events and produce genuine material (webcasts, presentations and so on).

    How do we have some visibility to the VSTS community website?

    Thanks a lot,

    Here my blog where I post all the information:

    http://speechflow.spaces.live.com/

    Javier Andrés Cáceres Alvis

    Blog Intel: http://software.intel.com/en-us/blogs/author/javierandrescaceres/

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