Twitter’s customer support profiles show you’re chatting with a human, not a bot

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Twitter is introducing custom profiles for businesses in order to personalize the customer support experience within direct messages on its platform.

The feature basically allows a company to identify its human representatives. When you direct message a customer support account on Twitter, the new custom profile will pop up next to the text bubble in a reply. It will include info such as the agent’s real name, job title, and a profile pic.

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The company is partnering with T-Mobile at launch, and it seems the mobile carrier’s approach to customer interactions has been somewhat of an inspiration for the feature. In the past, T-Mobile has used customers’ real names and its agents’ initials in customer-related tweets. Last year, the company started adding its agents’ pictures and names to Tweet replies by linking to its custom bio web pages for each representative.

Twitter claims that personalized experiences can make a difference for brands and customers. According to its research, people are 19 percent more likely to feel they’ve reached a resolution when chatting with a human, and 22 percent more likely to be satisfied compared to those who had impersonal interactions.

That doesn’t mean Twitter is giving up on its automated response tools (a chatbot-style system for DMs launched in November). It adds that companies can use a mixture of custom profiles alongside branded bots to inject personality into direct messages.

“Custom profiles can help people identify when they are speaking to a human versus not, which helps manage their expectations about the types of replies they might receive,” said Ian Cairns, customer service product lead at Twitter.

Twitter’s direct message APIs are currently in private beta. Businesses of all sizes interested in utilizing the features can register their interest here.

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