Case Study | Technology

Read our case study on how Sutherland helped a data storage and PC component manufacturer with a custom designed contact management system.

Services Sutherland Labs, DIgital Engineering Services, Business Process Services
Industry Technology
JUNE 21, 2017

Our client sought to establish a presence within highly influential third party online community forums in 10 different languages. By recognizing the impact that these communities could have on customer support, the client could cut down on more expensive means of support, encourage self-service options, increase understanding of customer preferences and needs, and build up equity in their brand by turning detractors into supporters and supporters into advocates. Objectives for the client included:

  • Establish a team of trusted “super users” within the most influential online communities on the web, including Tom’s Hardware, LinusTechTips, Reddit, and many more

  • Provide the right answers to the right questions, in order to drive forum users and search engine users to the client’s self-service options and dissuade contacts from traditional support channels like voice and chat

  • Extract customer insight relating to specific products, processes, preferences, use cases, hobbies, and ad-hoc research areas

Challenges included managing more than 1,000 contact channels across 10 different languages consistently and effectively, and developing data tracking methodologies that allowed quantitative and qualitative data to be transformed into actionable business intelligence.


Sutherland conducted an extensive research exercise, leveraging both human and artificial intelligence, that identified, validated, segmented, and prioritized 1,350 key online communities. Our technology and subject matter experts then captured data feeds for these sources, and integrated them into a custom-designed single contact management system. Contacts were filtered for language, relevance, subject matter, and priority and were routed into corresponding response specialist groups. To build trust within online communities, the following steps were taken:

  1. Response specialists were trained extensively in all supported products, with weekly refresher training sessions and dedicated lab time

  2. Prior to engaging within a new community, forum administrators and moderators were contacted to explain its intentions and objectives, and worked directly with forum officials to understand guidelines

  3. To build trust and establish Sutherland specialists as genuine community members, response specialists were instructed to spend a specific portion of their time engaging with the community

Additionally, Sutherland staffed a dedicated reporting specialist to sit directly with the service delivery team to gather qualitative insights to augment quantitative social and customer relations management data, and to produce both standardized and ad hoc reporting. The reporting specialist worked with the client to implement a link tracking methodology, which allowed us to capture data around web traffic generated towards client knowledge base articles.


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