Customer support on Twitter, the @XboxSupport and @BTcare examples

So it seems that there’s a problem with an XBLA game. A problem that occurs for one person out of the 663 people I’m following on Twitter, many of them gamers. The person takes it to @XboxSupport, the official Twitter account for all things Xbox.

I don’t follow many companies on Twitter, as I’m fairly selective with the people I’m following. One of the few companies I do follow is @XboxSupport. I’ve contacted them several times in the past and some of the issues could not be resolved, just like when a friend once contacted them with a straightforward issue and they made him jump through several hoops. I have mentioned this to them directly in their feedback reports and via direct messages.

I have nothing but the highest respect for anyone working in customer support and appreciate the difficulty of only having 140 characters to help customers. Their customer service has improved vastly over time and I’m sure it’ll carry on to do so in the future.

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At the same time I also think that customer service should work and, where it can’t be dealt with on Twitter, should be taken to other communication methods. @BTcare do this exceptionally. This is a brief summary of my interactions with them over a four months period at the beginning of the year:

  1. I contacted the Twitter account to ask to be removed from the BT marketing lists. This involved me emailing my landline number and account holder name to their email address. The matter was dealt with in less than a day.
  2. I contacted the Twitter account as we didn’t appear to have any service, even though the bill was paid. Based on my Twitter account and the previous interaction they were able to look up my details and tell me that my housemate’s direct debit hadn’t gone through, even though he claimed he had. Matter was dealt with in an hour and one reply tweet.
  3. I contacted their Twitter account to get information about changing the account holder. I was linked to information within hours.

Their support works, because they have the database to back it up, something @XboxSupport are hopefully working on.

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Coming back to the game problem. It’s now 24 hours and 47 Tweets from the customer [over half of them soapboxing] later and the issue is finally resolved after standard troubleshooting methods to eliminate causes. Based on the tweets it could have been resolved after 21 tweets or even earlier, but it was dragged out to involve at least four other people over a few hours. Granted, I may be more or less responsible for it as I wouldn’t let it drop.

Twitter is a public platform and often has people that want to further their own agenda and, well, complain about anything. Tonight is just yet another example of someone starting with a support question which ended up getting out of hand with insults and sarcasm.

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What are the differences between the support accounts? There is no need to follow either of them as questions can be answered without it, but the @XboxSupport account actively encourages people to follow it by tweeting about game news and sweepstakes. Moving that to another account, such as @XboxOfficial or something similar would reduce that. This would also reduce the amount of people that see long and public conversation and would overall reduce the internet drama at least some.

I love that companies provide customer service on Twitter and hope that more will continue to do so, even if the DailyMail paints it as something bad whilst completely missing the point as usual!

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2 Comments

  1. Wons
    Posted June 29, 2010 at 12:35 am | Permalink

    I dealt with @XboxSupport just a few days ago about my Netflix app not streaming in HD, and they were super helpful.

    Therefore, I approve this message. *thumbsup*

  2. Posted June 29, 2010 at 1:17 am | Permalink

    Thanks!


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