Why I Love Twitter for Customer Support

I’ve had many opportunities lately, with a move and other business related service changes or issues, to test out our many modes of customer service alternatives. I continue to have best success with Twitter. Why? A few rants and results:

1. Comcast Internet. I move, literally out one door & in the next, same building. They tell me my address doesn’t exist. Really? My last 2 years with Comcast internet in this unit were a dream? Finally get appointment, “someone will call first”, no one does. Phone calls and chats, I’m still using internet through the wall in my apartment for 2 weeks.

Move to Twitter- @ComcastWill to the rescue, escalates me to executive support. Shantae calls me immediately, admits Comcast screwed up, simply needed to add my new unit number to the database. Back in business!

Twitter: 2 days to technicians & live internet. A credit for my woes.
Phone and Chat: 2 weeks of irritation, no resolutions or follow up.

2. Adobe. I use an annual service. Going to update my CC info I realize they billed me at 6 months instead of 12 last year. I call, listen to bad music for 30 minutes. Go to chat while I wait. A paraphase of a chat that went from kind to livid.

Blah blah blah, about 30 minutes in, the pleasantries end…

Me: Let’s break it down. I paid for 2 years, I’ve had it for 1.5, you should not bill me again or give me 6 months credit against this bill to sync up the cycle.
Adobe: But you have 2.
Me: Yes, but 2 is 2 years, it has been 1.5 years since my account inception. I am one person with one account, one login.
Adobe: But then why did you pay for 2?
Me: Because you charged my card on file.
Adobe: But you have 2 so we billed you for two. (What?!)

(more circles, skip ahead….)

Me: Just give me a credit for 6 months and I’ll up my subscription again.
Adobe: We can’t, the system won’t allow it.
Me: You tell me your billing system doesn’t allow credits?
Adobe: No it is not possible.
Me: yes it does, I had a career in building these systems. Please escalate my issue as you are unable to help me.
Adobe: No it is not possible.

And it went on until the 5th time I asked to be escalated and they told me they wouldn’t be able to help me either.

For the love of all that is sane!!! I built and managed customer service programs for over a decade. Anyone that reported to me will assure you, I understood their pain, the thick skin it takes to be on that phone or chat, the crazy nutjobs that call and swear at them at will. I am kind to customer service people. But after an hour of this nonsense I resorted to: “FOR CHRIST SAKE STOP REPEATING YOURSELF AND IGNORING THE LOGIC. YOU DON’T GET IT AND CLEARLY CAN’T HELP ME. I’VE ASKED FOR ESCALATION 5 TIMES NOW WHY WON’T YOU!”

He finally says someone will call me but won’t be able to do anything. End chat. The survey I am promised miraculously does not appear.

Now I need a ginormous glass of wine. Next day. Twitter. BOOM:

Twitter: Resolved in moments. Someone even called to make sure the credit hit my card.
Phone and Chat: Over 2 hours combined waiting for phone & dealing with chat insanity. Driven to drink. No resolution and failed promised follow up.

Now, I’m thrilled Twitter resolves with such ease. My greater question is however- why is it the Twitter team trained so differently than the phone team or the chat team? Should I have to announce my woes to the world of social media to get the service I deserve? Or are they so segmented that one team truly has no idea what the other is doing? Are they trained by drastically different management teams who have completely different policies and procedures? My interpretation of their training is this:

Twitter Team: Help the customer, make it quick and easy.
Phone/Chat Team: Hold on to every last dime the company has, resist the customer, refuse to help them, they probably need our software and can’t afford to leave us anyway. Frustrate them into submission!

I love how social media has brought more options to consumers, but there is clearly a need for more internal centralization of policy and training of staff to leave both sides content at the end of the discussion AND save both sides money and grief.

Have you experienced a Twitter support success? Share your experience in the comments!