Can You Influence It?

Careful of reporting on metrics you can’t influence.

Customer support communities often fall victim to this. A new product release drives scores of people with problems to ask questions in the community. This is reported in activity or calls deflected.

That’s now the benchmark you’re judged against.

But as the problems are solved in the product, as people become more familiar with the product, both naturally decline.

Now you have to explain why activity has declined in your community.

This is why percentages tend to work better than absolute numbers.

You might not be able to influence the absolute number of visitors, but you can influence a percentage of them to find a solution to their question. You can influence the percentage of questions that have a featured answer. You can influence the speed at which people get a featured answer.

Be careful what benchmarks you set for yourself.

p.s. I’m in San Francisco for the next 2 weeks, send me an email if you would like to meet up.


  1. remah says:

    That first sentence is gold; I get excited about a wise maxim like that.


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