Forums/Documentation/Tickets and channels

Setting up your Twitter channel

Anton de Young
posted this on May 08, 2012 14:39

Your Zendesk can monitor one or more Twitter accounts and convert tweets to tickets as needed. All tweet activity between agents and Twitter users is added as ticket comments. Using the Twitter channel, you can do the following:

  • Create Twitter searches using keywords to monitor references to your business, products, and services
  • Use your saved searches to convert tweets to tickets and retweet messages
  • Convert a tweet into a ticket and respond to the user with a tweet, a direct message, or move the conversation to email
  • Bulk convert multiple tweets into tickets in one step
  • Convert tweets to tickets outside of Zendesk by favoriting a tweet in twitter.com and many other Twitter clients
  • Automatically capture public mentions and direct messages as tickets
  • Append ticket links to outgoing tweets
  • Set one of your Twitter accounts as the primary so that all outgoing tweets come from one Twitter account

Only administrators have access to the incoming tweets; however, once they've been converted to tickets all agent types have access to them unless you've otherwise restricted their access to certain types of tickets (by restricting them to an organization, or by customizing Enterprise agent roles to exclude this permission, for example).

Tickets created from tweets are also referred to as twickets and you'll see that word used in our documentation as shorthand for 'tickets created via a tweet'. It's important to note however that once a tweet becomes a ticket it behaves just like any other ticket in your Zendesk. The one exception to this is that you have a number of Twitter specific options for replying back to the Twitter user. You can reply with a tweet or your reply can be a direct message, which is private message back to the user.

How tweets become tickets

You can control if and how incoming tweets become tickets. Here are several scenarios for managing incoming tweets and converting them to tickets.

  • Favorites. Convert tweets outside of Zendesk by favoriting them in your Twitter client. This approach allows you to manually choose tweets to convert before they ever reach your Zendesk.
  • Saved searches. Create Twitter searches in Zendesk and monitor your incoming tweets from within the Zendesk administrator interface. The advantage to this approach, aside from not having to manage them in another application, is that you can create as many saved searches as you need to monitor the Twitter traffic for your products and services. In other words, you sort through your Twitter stream and just grab the ones containing relevant keywords. You can then manually convert one or more tweets to tickets, retweet messages, and also view the Twitter user's profile.
  • Mentions. Automatically create tickets from public tweets that contain your Twitter account's handle or direct messages from Twitter users that you follow. You may end up with tickets that are not actually support requests and that need no follow-up but you can manage these out of your ticket queue by manually solving and closing or deleting them.
  • Triggers. Use one or more triggers to monitor new support requests that originate from your Twitter channel. You can use the trigger condition Ticket Channel, which has the following three Twitter sources: Twitter, Twitter DM (direct message), and Twitter Favorite. The advantage to this approach is that you have much more control over the creation and management of Twitter-based tickets. See Managing twickets with business rules below.

Which approach you take might be based on your overall Twitter traffic or the number of administrators who are available to monitor and convert tweets, or the number of agents you have available to deal with support requests. You may want to use a combination of all of these approaches.

Adding Twitter accounts to your Twitter channel

To start, you need to add at least one Twitter account to your Twitter channel. You can add as many Twitter accounts as you need. For example, your company may have different Twitter handles for different aspects of the company (sales, support, operations, and so on). One of your accounts can be set as the primary, which means that all tweet responses from your Zendesk use the primary account's Twitter handle.

To add a Twitter account

  1. Click the Manage icon (), then select Channels > Twitter.
    Zendesk Classic: Select Settings > Channels > Twitter > Edit.
  2. Select the Twitter accounts tab.
  3. Click Add Twitter account.
  4. You'll be prompted to log in to Twitter and then authorize Zendesk to use your account. Enter your login information and then click Authorize App.

After your account has been authorized, your newly added Twitter account will be listed on the Twitter accounts tab. You'll want to edit the account's settings to control how tweets to this account are handled.

Editing Twitter account settings

After you've added a Twitter account, you should configure some basic settings for the account. These are described in the following table.

To edit a Twitter account, from the Twitter accounts tab, click the Edit link next to the account.

SettingDescription
Set as primary If a Twitter account is marked as primary, all tweets from Zendesk will come from the primary Twitter account.

You can change the primary Twitter account any of the other Twitter accounts you've added. You can set the primary account by editing this setting on this page or you can switch the primary account on the Twitter accounts tab. Roll your mouse over the list of Twitter accounts and you'll see Remove as primary link, if the account is currently the primary, or the Make primary link if the account is not already the primary.

Capture public mentions as tickets This automatically converts any public tweet containing your Twitter account handle (for example, @mondocam) to a ticket.
Capture incoming direct messages as tickets This automatically converts incoming direct messages into tickets. This allows your customers to contact you privately rather than publicly. You can only receive a direct message from a Twitter user that you follow.
Track favorites This automatically converts a tweet that you mark as a favorite to a ticket. For example, if you're managing your Twitter stream using twitter.com, you have the option of manually marking a tweet as a favorite.

Learn more about favoriting tweets in Twitter help.

Edit the Twitter account settings as needed, then click Update Twitter account.

Deleting a Twitter account

From the Edit page you can also delete the Twitter account from your Zendesk. Deleting an account does not remove any of the tickets that were created via the Twitter account.

Automatically converting tweets to tickets

As shown in the table above, you can choose to automatically convert public mentions and direct messages into tickets (Capture public mentions as tickets and Capture incoming direct messages as tickets). If you enable these, the option to manually convert tweets to tickets will no longer be available for that Twitter account.

Viewing your twickets

As described in Creating and managing saved searches below, you can create keyword searches to monitor your Twitter stream from within Zendesk. Your saved searches are available on the Manage searches tab in the Twitter channel settings page. When you convert a tweet to a ticket, it is added to your ticket queue and you can create a view just for your twickets if you'd like. See Managing twickets with business rules below.

Adding Twitter search to the top menu bar (Zendesk Classic only)

In the Classic version of Zendesk, you can add your saved Twitter searches (defined in Creating and managing saved searches) to a quickly accessible menu in the top menu bar.

To enable Twitter search in the menu bar in Zendesk Classic

  1. Select Settings > Channels > Twitter > Edit.
  2. Select the General settings tab.
  3. Enable the menu by clicking Yes next to the Enable twitter search? option.

Appending ticket links to outgoing tweets

Another option for your outgoing Tweets is to append a shortened URL to the ticket you created from the tweet. This allows the Twitter user to access the ticket page in the Web portal via their Twitter account. In other words, remote authentication is used to log in through Twitter to Zendesk (end-users must sign in to Zendesk to see the ticket page).

Once a Twitter user has access to the ticket page, they can add a longer comment than they could have in Twitter given the 140 character limit of a tweet. They can also update their user profile (adding their email address for example).

Note: If you started using Zendesk on or after August 21, 2013, this option is not available until you activate your Help Center. See Getting started with the Help Center.

You have the option of allowing the agent to decide if a shortened or the original URL is used in the response. And, you can choose one of several URL shortening services to use.

To append ticket links to outgoing tweets

  1. Click the Manage icon (), then select Channels > Twitter.
    Zendesk Classic: Select Settings > Channels > Twitter > Edit.
  2. Select the General settings tab.
  3. Enable the ticket links by clicking Yes next to the Append ticket links to outgoing tweets? option.
  4. If you want agents to decide when to use shortened URLs, deselect the Always include shortened ticket URL option. It is selected by default.
  5. If you want to change the URL shortening service, choose from the options listed or select Custom and then enter the URL of the shortening service you want to use.
  6. Click Save tab.

Creating and managing saved searches

As discussed in How tweets become tickets, there are several ways to approach viewing and managing incoming tweets. You can manage them manually both within and outside your Zendesk account or you can automate the process of turning tweets into tickets.

An effective way of managing incoming tweets is to create Twitter searches based on specific keywords. For example, you can create a Twitter search that captures any tweets that mention one of your products by name. You can create a Twitter search and set the criteria in Zendesk and then view the search results and manually determine which tweets should be converted to tickets.

If you're using multiple Twitter accounts in your Twitter channel, you can select which one to respond from in the search. This only works if you haven't set one of our your Twitter accounts as the primary account.

Searches can also be made available to all agents, just agents in a specific group, or only yourself.

For more information about using your saved Twitter searches, see Using your Twitter saved searches to monitor and manage tweets.

To create a Twitter search

  1. Click the Manage icon (), then select Channels > Twitter.
    Zendesk Classic: Select Settings > Channels > Twitter > Edit.
  2. Select the Manage searches tab.
  3. To create a new search, click Add search.
  4. Set the options described in the following table.
    SettingDescription
    Name your search The title of your saved search.
    Respond to tweets as The default Twitter account for responding to tweets in this search. If you set one of your Twitter accounts as the primary, your response will come from that primary account. This search-based response setting will only be used if none of your Twitter accounts are set as the primary. If you're monitoring different Twitter streams, you may not want to set a primary and just respond from each Twitter account separately.
    Keywords Zendesk will search Twitter for tweets that match these keywords. Click Preview Twitter Search to test your keywords. You use the Twitter keyword search syntax to define a search. See Twitter search operators.
    Search available for Set the availability of the search. You can make it available to all agents, just agents in a specific group, or only yourself.
  5. Click Add search.

To edit a saved search

  1. Click the Manage icon (), then select Channels > Twitter.
    Zendesk Classic: Select Settings > Channels > Twitter > Edit.
  2. Select the Manage searches tab.
  3. Next to the search you want to edit click Edit.
  4. Make your changes and then click Update search.

To delete a saved search

  1. Click the Manage icon (), then select Channels > Twitter.
    Zendesk Classic: Select Settings > Channels > Twitter > Edit.
  2. Select the Manage searches tab.
  3. Next to the search you want to delete click Edit.
  4. Click Delete. You'll be prompted to confirm that you want to delete the search. Click OK.

Filtering out retweets

You may also want to filter out retweets from your Twitter search results. To do this, add "-filter:retweets" to your search string. This excludes all retweets from your search results.

Managing twickets with business rules

A number of conditions are available to manage your twickets using business rules.

Like the other Zendesk channels, you can detect a ticket's source using the Ticket Channel condition in automations, reports, triggers, and views. There are three Twitter source types you can use in the Ticket Channel condition: Twitter, Twitter DM (direct message), and Twitter Favorite.

If, for example, you wanted to create separate views of each of the Twitter source types, you simply choose the Ticket Channel condition and then select the type.

In addition to the Twitter channel source types, you also have three other Twitter conditions that are available in triggers:

  • Requester's Twitter followers are...
  • Requester's number of tweets is...
  • Requester is verified by Twitter
The first two conditions help you to determine how active and potentially influential a Twitter user is, which may influence how you manage their tweets. For example, you might want to set twickets from more highly visible Twitter users to Urgent so that you respond as quickly as possible. Here's an example of what a trigger like that might look like:

The Requester is verified by Twitter condition is a special type of Twitter account that has had its identity verified by Twitter (by submitting proof of business, for example). Knowing that a Twitter account has been verified may be important to you in determining how to handle twickets. For more information, see FAQs about Verified Accounts in Twitter help.

And of course, you can also adds tags to your twickets and use them to manage your twickets through your workflow.

 

Comments

User photo
Allen Lai
bitcasa

Let's say my company has two Twitter accounts: @Acme and @AcmeSupport. Many times, customers will mention @Acme when they have a technical issue. If the person managing the @Acme account refers them to @AcmeSupport, Zendesk will automatically create a ticket under @Acme is mentioned. How do we avoid that?

December 12, 2012 12:27
User photo
Justin Seymour
Zendesk

Hey Allen: 

It sounds like you might need to be more specific with your search terms. Although, if I understand correctly, a ticket is created on behalf of the @Acme mention on a referral? You could use one of the search operators to tweak what is returned. Something like, @Acme -filter:support which would return @Acme mentions, but not tweets with the word support in them. 

https://support.zendesk.com/entries/20457807-zendesk-for-twitter-ad...

 

December 13, 2012 07:19
User photo
Allen Lai
bitcasa

Let's say I setup Zendesk to automatically create a ticket whenever @AcmeSupport is mentioned. However, some customers a more likely to send a tweet to @Acme if they have a problem. So @Acme will reply with something like, "@MrCustomer have you tried our friends at @AcmeSupport?" This will automatically create a ticket under @Acme. If the ticket is not solved and @Acme continues to mention @AcmeSupport, it will keep appending to that ticket and not create a new one.

Does that make sense? 

December 13, 2012 12:20
User photo
Justin Seymour
Zendesk

Absolutely! Aside from the filter option I mentioned above, I don't have any other suggestions. It may not be possible to filter the double-name mention. You'll have to play with your search conditions a bit. 

December 18, 2012 10:27
User photo
Tom
cloudexperts

Hello,

Is it possible to filter out other users names if they match your search fields? Example: My company is @ABC, so I have a search set up for "ABC" to see when people mention the company without the "@". The problem is there is a twitter user called "@jack_ABC" and so his tweets appear in my search.

I have tried to user "ABC -filter:@jack_ABC" but it doesn't work. Is there something I am missing somewhere, or is this not supported?

January 03, 2013 06:29
User photo
Tom
cloudexperts

I also seem to be going crazy, but how do you make the new Zendesk interface automatically create a ticket based on a public mention? I have been unable to find any setting to do this.

January 03, 2013 07:02
User photo
Justin Seymour
Zendesk

Hey Tom: 

To turn those public mentions in to tickets, edit the settings for the desired Twitter account and make sure Capture public mentions as tickets is enabled. Filtering to that level might be a bit difficult, as you can't really account for who is mentioning ABC. You also can't account for the X number of people that have that string in their user name. 

January 07, 2013 05:01
User photo
Nicole Cheek
sbiaj

"Adding Twitter search to the top menu bar (Zendesk Classic only)"

Will this be upcoming for Lotus at any point? What do you recommend the best/quickest way to view these automated searches at the moment?

January 08, 2013 06:48
User photo
Justin Seymour
Zendesk

Hi Nicole: 

We'll be adding a similar feature to the new interface at a later update. The best way to manage this at the moment is by creating a custom sidebar link to your searches. There's a bit of work involved, but it does the trick! 

Saved Twitter Search in the new Zendesk

January 09, 2013 03:30
User photo
Nick Burns
mrmc

Is there any update on direct twitter access (button) to the "new" interface soon?  Similar to @ Nicole Cheek's question back in January?

February 21, 2013 14:40
User photo
Justin Seymour
Zendesk

No updates yet, Nick. The link above is still the best way to handle direct access to your searches. 

February 22, 2013 04:41
User photo
Allen Lai
bitcasa

I sometimes notice that Twickets aren't converted right away and can take up to 40 minutes. Is this expected? I've enabled Capture public mentions as tickets.

March 06, 2013 15:54
User photo
Luc Segers

Any update when this will be available in the new interface

March 19, 2013 00:03
User photo
Jennifer Rowe
Zendesk

Hey Allen, sorry for the delay. Tweets shouldn't take up to 40 minutes to be converted into a ticket. One our agents is following up with you in a ticket to get more details.

April 12, 2013 08:25
User photo
Jennifer Rowe
Zendesk

Hi Luc,

I know our agent followed up with you in a ticket, but wanted to post this here in case others are curious.

At the moment in the new UI you can search twitter under settings > channels > twitter. The search stream is something that will be added in the future, unfortunately we don't have an ETA of when this will happen I'm afraid.

April 12, 2013 08:30
User photo
Allen Lai
bitcasa

Thanks @Jennifer!

April 12, 2013 13:15
User photo
Shai Simchi
hopto

Hi,

Is it possible to create a ticket automatically from a saved search?
I would love to see a configuration for a saved search where i can control how frequently it runs behind the scene and then to determine for every saved search if to automatically create a ticket if there is a match.

Thanks,

Shai

June 11, 2013 16:23
User photo
Robert Wilson

When will "Twitter Search" become accessible in the top menu bar in the new Zendesk? It's available in Classic but not the new version...unless I've missed something.

June 13, 2013 05:54
User photo
Maxime
Product Manager

Hi Robert

I'll give you more information on this very soon but it's likely that this feature doesn't get ported to the new Zendesk. Instead we want to offer a better way of doing it using third party social media management tools

I'll be communicating on the forums very soon about the upcoming twitter changes

Cheers !

Maxime

June 13, 2013 22:11
User photo
Cathy Grim
cylance

Any idea why Public Mentions end up being tickets even though I have:

Capture public mentions as tickets
Capture incoming direct messages as tickets
Track Favorites

All set to "NO" ??

June 28, 2013 10:52
User photo
Laura D.
Zendesk

Hi Cathy, 

I had a quick look at your settings and that does seem odd. I've created a ticket for you in our system - look out for an email from us in a few minutes. We'll be able to help you out through the ticket a little better. Sorry for the trouble!

June 28, 2013 11:20
User photo
Dan

Allen is correct in his observation that "Twickets aren't converted right away and can take up to 40 minutes." I've noticed the same processing delays on my end.

October 11, 2013 04:34
User photo
Lindsay
arealchange

Hi!

I just linked our twitter account and have found that it creates multiple tickets from one DM. Is this normal? I have also noticed that it takes at least 5 minutes for mentions to become tickets, is that timeframe normal?

One last thing- I know that mentions that we respond to through Zendesk include a link to the ticket, but DMs do not. Is there a way to include a link to a ticket? (Maybe I just totally missed it!) 

THANKS! :)

October 11, 2013 11:31
User photo
Emily
Zendesk

Hi Dan and Lindsay,

Both of your examples -- of 5 to 40 minute delays in Twicket creation -- run counter to the intended functionality, so I've created tickets on your behalf. Lindsay, we'll get your other questions worked out there as well. I'll see you in those tickets shortly!

 

October 16, 2013 16:22
User photo
sun
mollom

Hi,

The built-in twitter search + ticket conversion is really useful.  As we're using the new Zendesk, I already followed the instructions on https://support.zendesk.com/entries/22114738-How-to-Link-to-a-Saved..., but it was really hard to set up (and still no icon) and it looks really weird to have the (complete) old Zendesk page UI in an iframe of the new Zendesk.

Studying the implementation, even the administrative twitter search page uses the old Zendesk UI page output, but:

  1. The output is loaded into the main content frame.
  2. Additional CSS hides all the page elements (header, logo, navigation, etc) from the old Zendesk UI.
  3. Further CSS overloading restyles the remaining elements to match better with the new Zendesk UI.

I wondered whether you could not automate the inclusion of this additional CSS for all Sidebar Icons that have a URL of *.zendesk.com...?

Should be a 1h task, no?

October 26, 2013 02:48
User photo
Avi Warner
Zendesk

@Sun, thanks for the idea. I'd definitely recommend sharing that over in our product feedback forum. I'd imagine that long term the goal would be to eliminate the need for this altogether when it comes to Twitter searches, but that's a nice approach. 

October 31, 2013 16:49