How to help customers help themselves
Animoto is a web-based video creation platform that lets anyone quickly and easily create professional-quality videos from their own photos, video clips, music, and text. The company’s founders share a passion for helping people better express themselves through online media by innovating technologies in the field of video production. Founded in August 2006, the company is based in New York City with an office in San Francisco.
Surge in customers drives need for sophisticated support
When Animoto added one million users within a year, the company quickly realized that they had outgrown its email-based customer support process.
Animoto’s support email account was a repository for all types of inquiries to the company. The company’s CEO monitored the account for business development opportunities, while the support staff checked it for incoming support tickets.
Meanwhile, Animoto hoped to let customers solve the most basic support issues by themselves by providing FAQ information on its website. But as the company’s user base grew, so did the demand for new FAQ content—and maintaining this content took development resources away from Animoto’s core product.
“We needed to make sure that we were driving issues to completion—not just waiting for customers to follow up with us,” says Chris Korhonen, UX designer/developer, Animoto. “So, we started looking for a solution that could not only keep track of all conversations, but also make it easy to manage our online knowledgebase.”
User-friendly with no IT involvement
“With Zendesk, we realized we could run our entire help desk and knowledgebase without pulling development resources away from our product,” says Korhonen. “And the solution was very competitively priced.”
Animoto also appreciated the ability to set up business rules for routing tickets, and to tag tickets by category for more granular reporting.
“Zendesk is as powerful as it is user-friendly,” explained Megan Etzel, customer relations coordinator, Animoto. “We can set up routing rules without involving a programmer. Within a day, we were already using Zendesk’s iPhone app which enable us to stay on top of tickets at all times. And the tagging by category lets us quickly spot current user pain points and potential problem areas.”
Community support and voting make it easier to provide the right answers
With Zendesk, Animoto has given its customers the tools to help themselves. Intuitive navigation and powerful search features help users find more answers without contacting support. Since Animoto went live on Zendesk, traffic on its knowledgebase has increased by 300 to 400 percent—and inbound emails and tickets have declined.
“When you have a diverse base of users, you have to give them options for finding answers,” Korhonen explains. “Zendesk delivered the tools we needed right out of the box.”
“Zendesk makes it easy to present our users with a logically organized support forum,” says Etzel. “Whether you’re an ordinary person making your first video, a member of the education industry, an Animoto affiliate, or even a developer, you’ll know exactly where to go to find highly relevant support topics.”
Once they reach the right community forum, users can post questions, or vote to indicate that they have the same question already posted by another user.
“Zendesk’s forums have let us turn support into a community activity,” says Etzel. “By tapping into the knowledge of our user base, we can provide the right answers sooner—without increasing our headcount.”
Zendesk’s automation and flexibility also help streamline daily tasks for Animoto’s support team. By implementing Zendesk macros, support agents can send automated responses to common issues. With Zendesk triggers, they can prioritize tickets and provide a higher level of service to Animoto Pro customers. In addition, Zendesk’s single sign-on integration with Animoto’s login system lets the company pull up each customer’s account information and review their support history at a glance.
“Zendesk has completely transformed the way we handle customer service,” Korhonen concludes. “It seems that as soon as we need a feature, they add it to the product a week later. We’re already looking forward to getting our ‘One Million Support Ticket’ birthday cake!”
Streamlined support for causes and customers
Charting a path to 99% customer satisfaction
Topic suggestions reduce ticket volume by 70%
Customer service outgrows email
Delivering customer service 35% faster
Connecting with supporters to change the world
Maintaining a consistent level of service for all
Rapid response is key for a fast-paced business
Improving support by moving from email to Zendesk