Typeform provides software to build beautiful, interactive forms for quizzes, research, feedback, lead generation, and more. Their success community includes a forum to collaborate with other creators, share tips and get help. They also have a developer portal for partners and customers to build custom integrations.
Typeform is a flexible product used by a wide range of users. They have run different types of communities over the years with varying levels of success. The challenge was in catering to this broad audience, which includes students, non-profits, and individual and business users, all with differing levels of technical understanding. In January 2021, they launched a new success community that included a forum with member milestones, recurring events, and live streams. They also have a long-standing developer program to support users who want to build their own integrations or partner with them. This is the area of focus for Developer Advocate Nicolas Grenié. They knew that integration use was a critical factor in improving their customers’ lifetime value and retention, so they wanted to offer more integrations and a better developer experience. The problem was "we had very low visibility on what people were doing," says Nicolas. "It was hard to get resources, even to instrument tracking. So if activities weren't happening in open forums, then we wouldn't see them."
Initially, Nicolas said they tried to use spreadsheets. "We would call the GitHub API, find repos and track how they were doing, but that was painful - both to build and maintain. It was difficult to make sense of it".
So Nicolas brought Orbit into Typeform, and "Orbit has empowered us to be able to go out and put in place the things we needed to understand who is doing what within our community.”
By connecting Segment via Zapier with Orbit, "we now have proper tracking and good stats. We're currently focusing on who is active within our community, either a developer creating an application using our API or those who have created an account on our success community." They can now see who is creating new forum topics, messages, and other interactions, and they can combine that with data coming in from GitHub to understand their overall engagement.
"We've also added a welcome email that's triggered when a new user enters Orbit. For folks who are new to the community, we introduce ourselves, and the responses and the information gained have been a huge success. Orbit helps our work with partners, too. We're now able to identify potential partners sooner, meaning we can engage with them earlier in their process. This has led to much better outcomes for us as we can advise and help them before big decisions have been made."
"Since Orbit gives us a way to see who our most engaged users are, we've been able to use that insight when we're developing new features too. We reach out to those users for research, which has helped inform our product work and launch new developer features. After chatting with folks, we tag them in Orbit, so we know who participated and not to reach out again too soon."
"Before Orbit, I was blind - I needed something that would give me a clear view of what is going on within the community. For us, Orbit is really insightful. Now, with a clear measurement of community, we've been able to use our stats to go back to the team and justify the direction we've taken. We're now planning to increase our use of Orbit; we’re looking at recording webinar and hackathon involvement and exploring how to reward people and unlock swag."