Enterprise 2.0 Social Technology Value Levers – @ComcastCares Case Study

Comcast Logo

Comcast Logo

Comcast is the largest provider of entertainment, information and communications services and products in the United States, providing cable television, broadband Internet and telephone services to their customer base in 40 states. As of March 2012, Comcast had more than 18 million subscribers to their Internet services alone. Despite their obvious commercial success, the company had been the target of criticism for their poor level of customer service for a long time, which had been evidenced in their low customer satisfaction scores.

@ComcastCares

It is a well know fact of life in the digital age that disgruntled customers can do tremendous harm to the reputation of a company by tweeting and posting negative comments about their experiences with customer service. Due to the viral nature of Facebook and Twitter, the company’s reputation will surely suffer in almost all such cases.

Comcast Cares Logo

Comcast Cares Logo

Comcast has managed to revolutionise their customer care approach and improve customer satisfaction by utilising Twitter as a means of reaching out and communicating with their customers. In 2008, Frank Eliason, a Comcast customer service representative, initiated a new project where he and his team of 10 started addressing the growing criticism of their customers that had been caused by their frustration and dissatisfaction with Comcast’s customer service. The project made good use of Twitter’s microblog functionality in order to help customers in the most efficient way possible.

According to a 2011 report, Frank’s new customer care division processes about 6000 blog posts and 2000 Twitter messages per day which results in faster customer response times that directly translate into improved customer satisfaction indexes. One unique aspect of their Twitter based communication is that they don’t use “ghost” personas – all communication that comes from @ComcastCares originates from Frank himself. This brings the much needed human touch back to the online customer interaction which is pretty rare among companies the size of Comcast. Arguably, this has been the key ingredient that made Frank’s project a success and a very strong differentiator compared to customer service practices of similarly large corporations.

Conclusion

To sum up, taking care of your customers and handling customer complaints appropriately must be a first priority for every company that wants to improve (or even just maintain) their good reputation on the market. With the proliferation of social media on the Internet, news travel extremely quickly and no company can afford to lose their paying customers due to the perception that their concerns are not being addressed appropiately by customer service. Conversely, by providing stellar customer service through social media can be an important differentation that can result in serious market advantages over the competitors.

References

Comcast
Wikipedia – Comcast
Wikipedia – Criticism of Comcast
Cable Continues Low Customer Satisfactions Tradition
Comcast Reports 1st Quarter 2012 Results
12 digital and social media case studies that prove Customer Service ROI
Social Media Case Study: How Comcast Is Winning The Battle For Perception
Twitter – Frank Eliason
Twitter – @ComcastCares

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12 thoughts on “Enterprise 2.0 Social Technology Value Levers – @ComcastCares Case Study

  1. Very good blogpost again! I enjoy reading your blog, always a lot of background information which shows that you really did a lot of reseach. Same for your embedded videos, this makes the post very interesting.
    Comcast seems to be a very good example of the 8th value lever (“provide customer care via social technologies”) mentioned in the McKinsey study. Good choice in my opinion!
    Could you think about any further improvements through the use of social technologies for Comcast in the future? What might be the “next step” in their successful strategy?

    • Thanks, I’m glad you found my post informative. I think there is still room for improvement for Comcast (or for any other company, for the matter), for example they could add real-time chat or video conferencing facilities to their customer support services to help users even more effectively. Describing your problem in short Twitter messages can be quite difficult sometime, in my opinion.

  2. Hi Digitalrainforest
    Another great post really enjoys reading your stuff. What, first of all, strikes me (yet again) is how you manage to find these company cases? I know I struggle a lot with this. Anyway just want to say that I really like how you use a different set of cases than everybody else and how you apply your points to these. Also nice video and reflection in previous comment response!

    • Thanks, it’s great to know that you are my biggest fan 🙂 Well, there’s no secret really, I just use Google and try to find interesting examples that aren’t too obvious choices. It takes about 1-2 hours just to collect some research material for a single post, though. Hope that helped 🙂

  3. Interesting blog post.
    I totally agree with you that each company should insure their customer satisfaction and try to answer customers’ quires in a timely manner.

  4. Trying to get the “Comcast”link to open but no luck..I am curious to know when Comcast was founded. This is a very interesting study as the topic of my post ‘Your customer reflects your Business’, suggests, businesses while trying to add value to their organisation, should also pay attention to views of their customers. I must say, being one of the largest entertainment information provider in the US, your idea of adding a real-time chat feature to their customer service shouldn’t be all that far fetched..nice write up.
    http://www.chiugookoli.wordpress.com

    • Hmm, strange, I’ve just tried it and all links work fine for me. I think you can find out quite a lot of information about the company on their webpage. Thanks, I too think that adding the real-time chat feature will sort of inevitable for them in the near future.

  5. I really like your writing style and the way you structured your blog. Nice one adding this video to the post as well. Thanks for sharing about Comcast, I didn’t know about it until today haha you can say I learned something new from your blog and very interesting point of view on the subject matter. I look forward to the next one 🙂

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