Thwack Gamifies User Support and Drives Engagement
SolarWinds (@solarwinds) is a self-described IT generalist company that has employed a social community dubbed “thwack” (@thwack) to provide a venue in which customers, employees, resellers and visitors can connect with one another in a place where they both share and learn. Several years ago SolarWinds gamified thwack, so the company’s experience with gamification offers an excellent measure of its customer loyalty and other benefits.
Missions, Rewards and Recognitions
Certainly, the IT pros that work with SolarWinds typically engage in activities that make them erudite consumers of internet content and experience. SolarWinds astutely gamified its website years ago in an effort to engage these discriminating users. SolarWinds has developed an array of missions, rewards and recognitions in its gamification of thwack in order to channel user behavior.
Gamification has generated quantifiable gains for SolarWinds. Since thwack was gamified, the company has received more than 100 testimonials about the company through thwack. Additionally, 150 customer-driven ideas have been generated. Plus SolarWinds has six times more “customer champions,” as it calls them. Altogether, a total of 130,000 customers have made contributions to thwack.
Savings Via Deflected Support Calls
Perhaps most importantly, SolarWinds points to gamification as a prime source of product forum success. An executive with the company asserts that even if just five percent of its product forum visitors represent calls deflected away from customer support, savings literally run into millions of dollars. Consider that just one of its product forums has generated over six million views, and one can appreciate the magnitude of the potential savings in the area of customer support. The gamification experience at SolarWinds has evolved to the point that it is now a key part of the enterprise’s overall business strategy.