Zendesk integrates Twitter into customer service app

The goal is to let Zendesk users respond more effectively to Twitter posts from customers

Zendesk has upgraded its Web-based help desk software to simplify and automate how its users capture, analyze and respond to public Twitter messages that merit a customer-service response.

With the new integration, Zendesk users can flag posts on Twitter that mention their company and set up a formal process within Zendesk to address the customer comment.

The response process can include the creation of a support ticket, the automated monitoring and logging of Twitter comment threads and the capability to discuss the issue internally while also responding with public Twitter posts, Zendesk announced on Tuesday.

Mechanisms for internal communications include funneling information to e-mail and triggering a Zendesk workflow process to collaborate internally on resolving the issue.

Zendesk customers include Twitter itself, MSNBC and SAP, and early users of this integrated Twitter functionality include TweetDeck, HootSuite and TwitPic, the company said.

As Twitter has become the world's preferred tool for individuals to post short, text status updates, companies are scrambling to monitor mentions of their brands, especially if the posts are negative and involve complaints that should be addressed.

With about 2 billion messages posted on Twitter in May alone, according to Pingdom, this task is herculean, and some companies are proactively setting Twitter accounts devoted solely to fielding customer service issues, in an attempt to corral this type of post in a single place.

Whether tapped directly through their official Twitter channels or mentioned randomly elsewhere, companies have realized that managing their reputations on Twitter is increasingly important.

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Juan Carlos Perez

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