Monthly Archives: September 2018

How to Send Email from Decision Trees

send email from trees

One of the most frequent requests we get from customers is about sending email. We’ve spent a lot of time to make this process as simple as possible.

With Zingtree, you can use Email Nodes to send email in two ways:

  • Automatically, with no end-user interaction.
  • Showing a pre-defined form for the end-user to enter a message.

Emails can include everything you need:

  • The Session transcript.
  • Variables entered during the session.
  • Images and formatted text.
  • Attachments.

Sending  Emails Automatically

Emails can be sent automatically, with no end-user interaction. Start by creating an Email Node as follows:

  1. Click Tools, then Add Node.
  2. Select Email Node as the node type. The Send Method should be set to Send Automatically.
  3. The Email Node editor appears.
  4. Add a Page Title (mostly for your reference when using the Zingtree editing tools)
  5. In Send Email to, enter the delivery email address. You can enter multiple recipient email addresses separated by commas.
  6. Enter a subject and a message. The message can include images, formatted text, or placeholders for variables. For example, if you collect a variable called name, just add #name# into the email body for it to appear.
  7. Check Include Session Data in Email to include the Q&A transcript, and any data collected in the email. You can also check “Securely deliver session data via Link”, which will provide a link to the session information, instead of including it in the email body.
  8. In After Sending, choose a node to go to next. Or, choose Go to URL, and enter a URL to launch instead, like this:
  9. Click Save Changes when finished.

How to Create an Email Form Node

Your end-users can be presented with a stock email form, which looks like this:

You can make a node that displays this form by creating an Email Node as follows:

  1. Click Tools, then Add Node.
  2. Select Email Node as the node type. The Email Node editor appears.
  3. IMPORTANT: For the Send Method, select Show Form Before Sending.
  4. Add a Page Title (mostly for your reference when using the Zingtree editing tools)
  5. Add text for the Send Message button.
  6. In Send Email to, enter the delivery email address. You can enter multiple recipient email addresses separated by commas.
  7. You can enter a default subject or message. These are pre-filled in the email form.
  8. Check Include Session Data in Email to include the Q&A transcript, and any data collected in the email. You can also check “Securely deliver session data via Link”, which will provide a link to the session information, instead of including it in the email body.
  9. In After Sending, choose a node to go to next. Or, choose Go to URL, and enter a URL to launch instead, like this:
  10. Click Save Changes when finished.

Summary

These two methods are the recommended ways to send an email and should be used in place of any other methods.

As always, if you have any ideas to share with us on this or any other features, please let us know!

This article was originally published on June 15, 2018, and has been updated for accuracy. 

Sending and Receiving Data from Decision Trees with Webhooks

Our larger corporate clients have asked us for a way to be able to exchange Zingtree data with other applications. Some customers want to send data from a Zingtree session to another application or include data from another application in Zingtree.

Zingtree’s data exchange feature makes use of Webhooks with JSON formatted data. In fact, a lot of the tools we utilize work the same way.

Here’s an Example

To demonstrate how to send and receive data from your decision trees, we will walk through how to build a simple tree that asks for a USA zip code, and then shows the city and state for that zip code inside the tree.

Try this demo tree in the Zingtree Gallery here.

We will send data to a custom webhook we built, which takes a parameter of a zip code. It returns a JSON structure with the city and state info.  Here’s an example of the webhook in use:

http://zingtree.com/apps/webhook/filters/zippopotamus.php?zip=94960

If you click the link above, you’ll see these results:

{"zip":"94960","state":"California","state_abbreviation":"CA","city":"San Anselmo"}

The PHP source code for the webhook URL is here.

The variables #city#, #state# and #state_abbreviation# will now be usable by Zingtree. So to show the city, just enter #city# into the content area of any node.

Webhooks Process

Here’s a summary of how this works:

  1. Add the webhook to your organization’s apps.
  2. Include a call to the webhook in a node. When the node is visited, the call is executed.
  3. Any JSON variables returned by the call become Zingtree variables.

Adding the Webhook:

  1. Go to Account > My Apps.
  2. Click the Webhook button under My Apps.
  3. Enter a name for the webhook, and the URL as shown:The URL is:
     http://zingtree.com/apps/webhook/filters/zippopotamus.php?zip=#zip#

    #zip# will receive the zip code variable entered by the end-user.

  4. Click Add Webhook. This makes the hook available to your trees.

Calling the Webhook when a node is visited:

  1. Go to Overview, and edit the node you want to trigger the webhook call.
  2. Under Send Message To, select Webhook: Zip Lookup.

Universal Parameters

Every call to the webhook URL you provide always includes the following parameters:

  • node_id
  • session_id

Adding Security/Authorization

You can add an extra layer of security to your webhooks by passing an authorization token into the URL that launches your tree. The token is passed back to the webhook URL in the HTTP header.

To send the authorization token MYTOKEN, add this to the URL that launches the tree:

&auth_token=MYTOKEN

To check the token in your webhook, look at the X-Auth-Token value in the HTTP header.

Please note: The auth_token remains the same for the entire tree session.

Credits

The demo uses the free zippopotam.us postal code lookup service.


Any questions? We’re here to help – please reach out at any time via the feedback page or the orange chat window at the bottom right of our homepage.

This article was originally published on April 28, 2016, and has been updated for accuracy. 

8 Stats That Prove You Need A Knowledge Management System

Knowledge Management System

A knowledge base – also called a knowledge management system (KMS) – is the repository of information that customers and/or staff need to use your product or service, from basics to getting the most out of your product. The content comes from the subject matter experts (usually the creators and top support staff), and is expanded and improved over time.

Employees, especially new employees, will use the KMS to familiarize themselves with the product, and customers will often use the knowledge base themselves rather than call in for support. It takes an investment of time and money to create a proper knowledge base, but you will absolutely get more out of it than you put in, especially if it is interactive. Here’s why:

1) 40% of Customer Interactions Are Now Only On the Web

Customers today are calling customer service on the phone less and less than they used to. A recent survey of CRM managers and professionals by DestinationCRM found that 40% of customer interactions were over the internet, including mobile web and apps. Of those companies, 45% reported “measurable reductions” in phone inquiries. That means less time that employers have to pay support staff to answer the phone, and more of the time they do spend is on more advanced programs; this also leads to less employee burnout.

2) Solve Customer Issues For Just $0.25

I just mentioned that fewer customers will call in and require a live agent. Here is a more clear breakdown of those costs. A 2010 study by Forrester research on the benefits of click-to-call and click-to-chat showed that chats can cost a company up to $5 per customer interaction, and phone calls can cost as much as twice that. Automation brings that down even further, because rather than paying for staff to help, once the base is up and running, you’re essentially paying for the cost of running the server. One KMS provider, Hubspot, estimates that cost is a meager 25 cents per interaction.

3) 47% of Companies That Have a KMS Report Increased Sales

According to the same DestinationCRM survey, 47% of those surveyed reported an increase in sales through self-service and 54% reported an increase in web traffic, compared to before deploying a knowledge base. This is in part because a knowledge base answers many technical support questions before the buyer even makes a purchase. Your customer is more informed and more confident, which brings down purchasing resistance. In other words, once you set it up, the KMS is working for you!

4) Save $1,000 by Keeping Employees Happy

Onboarding a new employee is expensive. In order to train the new employee, existing staff have to take time from their tasks and spend it with the newbie, so youre paying twice over. According to a 2014 study by Training Mag, the training expenditure per learner for a small or midsize business was in the range of $819-$1,238; lets round that to $1,000. Thats $1,000 per employee, and if theres a high rate of churn, its money down the drain. By having a knowledge base, it empowers the new employee to learn at his or her own rate without having to interrupt the trainer for every small question, and can even brush up at home.

5) Every 1% Improvement in FCR Means 1% Higher Customer Satisfaction

The best way to reduce the cost of a new employee is to keep the ones you already have happy. According to 3CLogic, for every 1% improvement in first call resolution rate, contact centers will see a 1% improvement in customer satisfaction rates and a 1-5% improvement in employee satisfaction. Repetition is also a reason for burnout, and with a proper KMS, they will see lower zero level solution calls in the first place. The KMS also is an opportunity for collaboration between team members that can foster connections within a company.  

6) Your Existing Customers Will Help You For Zero Dollars

A knowledge base is written by your team members, but as customers ask questions, and, if you let them, answer them, it becomes a become a curated but crowd-sourced source of information. Its possible that customers will even figure out solutions that you havent, and you can add those great ideas to your own training. In addition, your customers are your real-time bug detectors and product developers. They may find a mistake or oversight that you didnt, and your KMS is the first place theyll look to figure out the problem. Similarly, if theyre looking for how to do something your product or service doesnt do, thats an instant suggestion box.  

7) 78% of Millennial Customers May Not Give You A “Second” Chance

Here is some bad news: According to a Salesforce study, although 89% of millennials use a search engine to find customer service, 78% of millennial customers have moved their business somewhere else after one single poor customer service experience. The importance of first-call resolution is higher than ever. Your best bet for keeping younger customers is to let them help themselves with a knowledge management system. It isnt just millennials, 40% of customers, according to Forbes, would rather skip human contact altogether in favor of self-service.

8) 5% Growth in Retention Can Increase Profits by 95%

According to a study by Bain and Company, having only a 5% growth in retention can increase profits by 25-95%. This is because compared to the cost and effort required to get a customers first purchase, many companies dont even break on that first one. It often can take several purchases for the retailer to be ahead. In their example, a customer who purchased from an online apparel retailer once was likely to refer three friends, but a customer who made seven purchases was likely to recommend the store to ten friends. In other words, customer loyalty is tough to earn, but if you are able to satisfy the customers, you will see significant growth over time.

The Final Word

Building a proper knowledge base requires time and effort. It will be continually updated with new information as your customers use your product and you, in turn, improve it. Thats why its called an investment. We at GetVoIP are always in favor of spending the necessary capital expenditure for long-term lower operational spending. A knowledge base will save your employees time and help retain customers, which in turn will both keep and put more money in your pocket. That is the very definition of a worthy investment.


About the Author:

Reuben Yonatan is the CEO @ GetVoIP, a leading VoIP systems comparison guide that connects shoppers with relevant providers.

 

Zingtree Updates: September 2018 – Labor of Love

Just in time for Labor Day, here’s what’s been happening at the Zingtree labs this summer! With a new Task Manager, PDF capability for Document Nodes, renumber and merge trees, and some more notification options are the highlights, we’re really excited about the progress we’ve made over the last several weeks.

See all of our improvements since June 2018 below:

New Features

  • Task Manager tool: Business Process Management, using Zingtree decision trees.
  • Renumbering nodes: You can now renumber nodes using the new option in the Copy Tree tool.
  • Combine trees: Make two trees into one using the new Merge Trees tool.
  • PDF generation: Document Nodes can now create PDF files.
  • History and Breadcrumbs: Embedded trees now have URL switches for embed_history or embed_breadcrumbs (various).
  • Push Live update flag: For trees with Push Live, DEV trees with updates since last push live now show with a red icon in My Trees (thx Lasse).
  • Event Log: See failed emails, login attempts and more from Account > Event Log.
  • Simple SMS, email & Slack notifications: From new built-in Apps under Account > My Apps.
  • Multiple apps: You can now have several apps/webhooks on a single node.
  • Better receipts: Customer receipts now have a PDF download option.
  • Erase variables: There’s now a Zingtree Erase Variables stock webhook (for Pharoah).

Updates and Minor Improvements

  • Agent feedback comments on a LIVE tree now always go to DEV version of the tree (Ian M.).
  • Preview now includes a feedback button (customer request).
  • “Lookup credits” are now “Enhanced Usage” credits.
  • Now shows “please wait” when loading traffic map (button clicks) report.
  • Added “please wait” message to long tree loads.
  • CSS templates now display white text in HTML <btn> tags (used in adding buttons to node contents).
  • Preview tool shows back, restart button options.
  • Added hint for webhook calls in the node editor.
  • Uploads now go to uploads.zingtree.com instead of zingtree-uploads.s3.amazonaws.com.
  • Doesn’t show “back” or “restart” on the starting node (Various customers requested this).
  • Right-to-left (Hebrew) display for History bar looks better (for Tal).
  • New WordPress plug-in 5.0 supports history, breadcrumbs.
  • Reorganized My Apps page.
  • Node labels in button choices in content node editor now use node titles (if available).
  • Session Details report cleaned up.
  • “Unknown” result label changed to “In Progress.”
  • Drawing return-to links from tree nodes now supported in Designer.
  • Content Node editor loads faster (thx Oliver).
  • Multi-tree API calls sped up.
  • Link control in the editor and new link nodes now defaults to “new tab” (Jonathan B.).
  • Content editor no longer shows link option for Google, Facebook, Froala.
  • Content editor links now have a tooltip option.

Fixes

  • Linking from LIVE to DEV tree now shows proper tree ID of DEV tree in session data.
  • PNG export looks for invalid characters that can break it.
  • PNG export is better at framing the content of the tree in the PNG.
  • Copied trees now show current date and time for “last opened” – appears at top of the list in My Trees.
  • Adding new merge variables in a pause and resume scenario now works consistently (Lasse).
  • SSO author login errors no longer stay stuck unable to log in.
  • Empty checkbox score no longer crashes form field data update (Jay H.)
  • Double-quoted strings now work OK in Logic Node editor, Designer for Logic Nodes.
  • Single quotes no long make Zapier transfers fail (Alok).
  • Now says “new logic node” instead of “new scoring node” in an alert message when creating a new logic node.
  • Doc node Continuation buttons now use theme.
  • Searching linked trees used the wrong search when a fade transition was in effect.
  • MailChimp API calls changed to always use a secure connection – now works properly again (Jonathan T.).
  • Form field labels in the content editor no longer show HTML codes instead of single quotes (Kwame A.).
  • Document node continuation button editor now shows email nodes correctly.
  • Breadcrumbs and history restore to the same state when pause & resume is triggered after a ##treetag-any## or ##treetag-all## link is clicked (Tal).
  • Custom CSS generator now ensures variables have values – won’t show error messages.
  • Layout for Snapshots tool now better for action buttons on one line.
  • Now allows multiple simultaneous people to use Agent Portal or Task Manager demos.
  • Centering videos now works properly.
  • Task manager login page no longer redirects to agent login page if the session is no longer valid.
  • Session click history output when included in a node now also includes blank questions in the click path – substituting page titles instead (Tatiana).
  • User-only text now hidden in subtrees when in agent mode (Kelly S.).
  • Thumbnails overview now shows “auto-send” for auto-send email nodes.
  • Sending email when the main tree was pushed LIVE and subtree was DEV now works as expected (Rachel D.).
  • Fixed bug with Tree tag links not working after restart.
  • Tree-node node selector now shows updated labels.
  • Rendering engine faster for large trees with many variables (Lee S.).
  • Shows stock apps in Settings/Code selector.
  • Inviting authors always allows people to continue signup.
  • Auto-send from email nodes no longer logs click text from the previous click.
  • Email input form now displays wider on small devices (Christiaan).
  • Edit, Copy buttons for auto-email nodes in Thumbnails overview now works as expected (Ian M.).
  • Tree rendering now handles improper UTF-8 characters (Thai).
  • DEV trees no longer show in Agent Portal search results (Angie H.).
  • CSV import now handles UTF-8 characters properly (Emma V.).
  • API speed updates for find_agent_sessions, find_tree_sessions.
  • Editing code in pop-up Content Node editor now highlights properly (Matthieu).
  • Empty webhook return no longer causes JS error.
  • Tags now allow Hebrew characters (Tal).
  • Now replaces #session# in email node templates for auto-send (Lasse).
  • Phone number validation no longer fails if there’s a space inside the phone number.
  • Retina display of screenshots now works properly in Wizard, Designer tutorials.
  • New email form nodes now include session data.
  • Email form node shows default text if no continuation text specified (for Legacy forms).
  • Email form nodes properly show “please wait” when Send is clicked.

That’s it! Keep an eye on all of our product updates, and feel free to reach out with any questions, anytime. 

Service Issue – September 2-3, 2018

We experienced a temporary issue with saving data from approximately 12 PM PST September 2, to 12 PM PST September 3. This was caused by an update which passed our QA process, but nevertheless had issues.

The functionality of trees worked properly, but any data collection during that time may not have worked properly for some trees.

Going forward, we’ve updated our build process to ensure this particular issue does not resurface again. Our apologies if this affected your operation in any way.

Thanks for your patience, and continued support of Zingtree.

P.S. If you are using Agent Portal, we may be able to recover raw data from the outage period. Just ask us on chat.