Time Warner Cable recently became the latest brand to fall victim to a viral customer service complaint on social media – and this time it wasn’t just your average customer posting or tweeting. It was two generations of Star Trek captains: both Picard and Kirk.
Sir Patrick Stewart, who had recently moved to Brooklyn, became frustrated with the wait time for getting cable installed in his apartment, so he took to the Twitter-sphere to voice his new-customer discontent:
Time Warner Cable responded to the post within two minutes, a fantastic response time for customer service on social media:
Hindsight is always 20/20, but the next-day re-engagement with the actor on this very public channel instead of deflecting the conversation to a more private channel (or going straight to his apartment to make sure he was watching TV asap), made the new-customer relationship even more rocky, and encouraged Stewart’s fans and other disgruntled customers, including William Shatner, to join in for support:
The take-away? This could happen to any company at any time, so brands should be listening and prepared to respond to customer conversations on social media. And it appears that Time Warner Cable in New York City was.
Re-engaging the classically-trained, knighted actor a day later on Twitter with a cute Star Trek-related response instead of deflecting the conversation to a more private and personalized channel. or taking care of the customer’s needs as quickly as possible, was the learning experience for the brand, and a customer service lesson for us all, as social media becomes a more prominent customer service channel.
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