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Jordan Miller
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Introducing The Alert System

Invision Community’s forthcoming release includes an exciting new feature available for all. 

Announcing the Alert System! 🚨

The Alert System is a new tool for community managers to communicate with their members. There are times when a community manager needs to bring information to the attention of either a single user, or a group of users; when existing systems such as PMs or warning points are not suitable. So, we developed a happy medium to empower you. 

The new alert system offers multiple ways to engage with single users or multiple member groups with a message that must be acknowledged and dismissed before further engagement with the community.

Here are a few examples of when a community leader can use the Alert System for individual members:

Moderator actions 
A moderator moves a topic and wants to inform the topic starter that the topic has been moved and why. 

Get ahead of warnings
A member left a comment that doesn’t justify a warning point, nor should it warrant a private message. You want to kindly remind them of the community guidelines. 


Community leaders may wish to send information to an entire member group. This may to warn them of new limits, or to notify support changes, etc. 

Here are a few examples of when a community leader can use the Alert System for groups:

Updates to community guidelines
After reviewing and updating your community guidelines or terms of service, you can send an alert to all affected member groups outlining the changes, so they are aware. As the message needs to be dismissed before any further interaction with the community, you can be sure it has been read before any more posts are made.


Could contain: File, Monitor, Electronics, Screen, Display, Text, WebpageThis example shows an alert with send anonymously switched on.

 

Welcome message
To strengthen your onboarding flow, you may like to send all new members a welcome message to introduce yourself and your team, along with some helpful information to help get them settled in.

Could contain: File, Monitor, Electronics, Screen, Display, Text, WebpageThis example shows an alert with the option to reply, with send anonymously turned off.

Heads up
Remind a group of a permanent account-related change, like their subscription will be decreasing/increasing. 

New forums added
After consultation with your community, you want to add some new discussion areas for your VIP Members. You can now send an alert targeted to members in that group to let them know where the new forums are and what their purpose is.

Let's chat
You notice that a great community member is having a bad day. Instead of reaching for punitive tools, you can send them an alert that they have to reply to before being allowed to continue engaging in the community.

Could contain: File, Computer, Electronics, Monitor, Screen, Display

These are just a few examples; of course, the alerts functionality has a lot of flexibility built in. 

Alerts are managed from the Moderator's Control Panel.

Could contain: File, Text, Webpage

 

Let us take a look at the different areas that can be configured.

Could contain: Computer, Electronics, Text, Tablet Computer

 

Dates
Each alert has a start date, and this date can be in the future. This is especially useful if you have an event coming up you want to showcase. You can optionally set an expiration date to only serve the alert for members that visit between the start and end date. You can also leave it running indefinitely for uses such as the welcome message.

Send to
This section allows you to choose to send to a single user or to a single or multiple groups. If you are sending to groups, you can further fine-tune the deliverability by choosing to send to everyone currently registered and to new members when they register, or you can target just new members (to be precise, this will target members who register after the alert date), this option is ideal for the welcome message alert.

Send as yourself or anonymously 
You can choose to send the alert anonymously or from yourself. There are times when you want a personal touch and times when you need more of a system style alert, perhaps when notifying of guideline updates. Or, if the message is general, or you want to protect members of your team, send the alert anonymously. 

Replies
If you choose to send the alert personally, then you can allow the member to reply, force the member to respond to dismiss the alert or remove the ability to reply. For a welcome message, you'd likely want to allow replies which then will create a new personal message between you and the member. 

We have built the system to be very flexible to cover a wide range of uses where you want to directly engage with a member or group of members and be confident that they have seen the alert before any further engagement in the community. Alerts can be used to strengthen onboarding, notify sections of your community about exciting new features and changes or even create an open dialogue after a punitive measure such as having a posting time-out.

This feature is coming to Invision Community 4.7, across all platforms.

Thoughts on our new Alert System?! Drop us a line in the comments and let us know what you think.

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A moderator moves a topic and wants to inform the topic starter that the topic has been moved and why. 

Something I always wanted, but doesn't sound like it will work as I'd prefer - it would help if this was an option during the moving topic process, make it an option to create an alert for the topic starter whilst on the pop up for that.

Edited by marklcfc
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I don't see the "Alerts" option in the Site Moderation screen logged in either as an Administrator or Moderator.  I'm running Beta 4.  Will this feature roll out in a later beta release?  If it is currently available, how does one enable it for use?

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6 minutes ago, Dean_ said:

It would be great if a button showed when you're moving a topic, so the user can press it to be directly taken to the new location of the topic.

You can leave a link in the original forum to the moved topic, and this can be selected when moving a topic.

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9 minutes ago, Dean_ said:

It would be great if a button showed when you're moving a topic, so the user can press it to be directly taken to the new location of the topic.

Nice idea! For now, the moderator could always include the link of the moved topic in the alert 💡 

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This looks super promising!  

A couple of suggestions if I might be so bold...

  • Integrate this into the warning system UI.  (Warn User, Flag As Spammer, Message, ALERT)
  • Integrate this into the forums.  For example, being able to send an alert to those who participated in a topic.  (The use case might be to notify users of something important happening when they might not be following that thread OR if a thread is getting out of hand issuing a gentle nudge to get them back in line.)
  • Allow sending anonymous messages that a member can reply to which would show in the alert section that any moderator could respond to.  (The use case might be part of the warning system of letting a member have a chance to respond to a warning, or giving a member a chance to ask questions with the moderator team.)
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3 minutes ago, Randy Calvert said:

Integrate this into the forums.  For example, being able to send an alert to those who participated in a topic.  (The use case might be to notify users of something important happening when they might not be following that thread OR if a thread is getting out of hand issuing a gentle nudge to get them back in line.)

YES!  This might also be used to better facilitate better conversations overall.  Your facilitators (also known as moderators) might ask some leading questions of the current thread participants to steer the conversation into something more meaningful to one and all but not leave any trace that such "nudging" occurred.

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For manual registration (as with a new member purchasing a product via commerce):

"You entered xyz@email.com as your email address.  If this is incorrect, go <here> to correct it.   Otherwise, click OK."

or something to that effect.

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This is indeed an excellent tool, I liked the novelty. 
I hope to one day see a native feature that determines the minimum amount of characters to submit a comment. 

Edited by Hisashi
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@Matt Can we send Alert, if user didn't updated certain profile fields and trying to create a topic in certain category? We use profile fields to capture certain user details, so that we can help them back. If you need detail use case, please let me know. Thanks

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  • Management
7 hours ago, AlexJ said:

@Matt Can we send Alert, if user didn't updated certain profile fields and trying to create a topic in certain category? We use profile fields to capture certain user details, so that we can help them back. If you need detail use case, please let me know. Thanks

This is not something that can be automated currently, but it's an interesting idea.

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2 hours ago, Jordan Miller said:

And I graduated with a degree in journalism 🤦🏼‍♂️ 😆 🙏 

Me too!  I have a degree in Mass Communications and another in Interactive Digital Media.  Funny enough...  I'm horrible with spelling.  

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