Merging Humans with Tools to Slow Down Trolls

This was a great read that I found through Seth Godin’s blog.     Troll whisperers aren’t necessarily very good at hacking tools, so there’s always an opportunity for geek synergy in helping them to automate their hand-crafted techniques, giving them a software force-multiplier for their good sense. For example, Teresa invented a technique called disemvowelling…

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Tips on Motivating Your Team to Engage with Customers

I was on a thread where a dev lead asked if anyone had tips to share on motivating his team to engage regularly with customers through blogs, forums, etc.  Paul Yuknewicz shared a great set of tips that I’m republishing with his permission. Get the team managers and leads to see the need for participation. …

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Does Amazon Ship the Best Social Software on the Web?

Yes, Amazon has the best social software on the web.  They’ve been quietly innovating for the last couple of years and it is unfortunate that people just think about their amazing catalog of user reviews and don’t think of them as an innovation hub for social software.  The reason is because their social software just works…

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9 Challenges to Making Product Support Transparent

Your customers have greatly evolved since the previous internet bubble, while most company’s customer support models have not grown with them. New, “Web 2.0” paradigms for content creation, publication, syndication, and consumption bring with them an enormous innovation opportunity for businesses needing to talk directly to millions of customers. Because of this gap between customers’…

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Overheard from the MVPS: More specific Feedback on Forums and Other channels

This is the last of the notes i took at the Summit that I was able to actually write down.  On Forums… “After posting an answer to a question there should be a link that goes directly back to a the filtered “unanswered” page you started from instead of just back to the forum. “…

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Customer Support in Communities; From 0 to 761 in a Year

Last week 761 developer customer questions were answered in our online communities by members of our customer support staff. These are the folks helping to bridge the knowledge transfer gap for .NET 2.0 and 3.0 that I talked about last week. The effort also represents a shift in our support strategy to start broadening the reach…

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Google makes your code prettier

Something I’d love to see Microsoft do more of is small, simple, solutions to annoying problems that would delight customers.  Here is a perfect example. Google Gode Prettifier A simple Javascript and CSS file, the Google Code Prettifier makes syntax highlighting in a web document super easy. It’s pretty flexible too. According to the project…

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Facilitate Knowledge Transfer in Online Communities

I’m often asked how products teams can best participate in their online communities.  It would be simple to say “go talk to customers” and be done with it, but you can have a more targeted approach than that.  They key to successful support communities is facilitating knowledge transfer between those with product expertise and a customer…

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Great tips on ramping up online user communities

There is truth in every recomendation from the following post.   Source: Creating Passionate Users: User Community and ROI In Building a User Community Part 1 we talked about the importance of not only a strict “There Are No Dumb Questions” policy, but also an even more dedicated “There Are No Dumb Answers” message. Today,…

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Forums are now as simple as a widget

The interesting thing is that the same forum could be hosted in different widgets on different sites if I read the post correctly. Freewebs continues to add to their widget catalog with their new forums widget. This customizable plug-in is available for use on your Freewebs page or on another website. Wherever the “widgetized” forum…

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