This is the last of a four-part series on using customer service as an effective community broadband marketing tool.
The past few weeks have been fun engaging in a conversation about preparing to create a level of customer service that translates into strong marketing that helps you withstand incumbents’ marketing onslaught as well as increase revenue. This week I want to wrap up by giving you some recommendations for customer service activities after you launch.
Manage expectation of services
You can’t build it all, all at once. Once you announce the network, quite a few people all over town will want service available as soon as the network goes live. However, as one project manager stated, “Somebody has to be last.” How well you convey that message and how equitable constituents perceive the roll out establishes a subliminal positive or negative image for the customer service. You can’t market “Customer Service is Job 1” and have credibility unless your business actions from the start reflect that message. Google in Kansas City is fighting a negative “service” image in low-income areas because of the company’s focus on building to areas that have money and the perception it doesn’t care about poor neighborhoods.
There’s another element of managing expectations effectively. Once the network starts to roll into the various neighborhoods, there is going to be a seriously pent-up demand for broadband, which is kind of a good news/bad news situation. The good news is that you’ll sign up a lot of subscribers right out of the gate. The bad news is that if you haven’t prepared enough of the right resources (installers, help desk staff, tech service people, etc.), you won’t be able to meet this demand. This too can put a cloud over your customer service team, and you’ll have to fight an uphill battle to establish an image of being a customer service-driven.