NPR’s Marketplace recently had a nice interview with the CEO of Comcast. Part of that interview referenced the companies problem with a poor reputation for customer service. That brought to mind our own experience with the company, past and ongoing.
As I’ve mentioned on numerous occasions, we rely upon Comcast Business Class internet access as our primary means of internet connectivity. While I’d love to have a greater diversity of alternatives, Comcast is the best that we can do around Houston for home office users.
In the house we also have Comcast’s residential cable TV service. We have two cable drops, each connected to a TivoHD. My wife likes choice so we get a LOT of channels. Consequentially, our monthly cable bill is substantial.
Comcast’s residential and business divisions are separate entities. They’re effectively twins. I maintain, as asserted in the title, that they’re idiots.
The Comcast Residential services company is constantly trying to move us into their “Triple-Play” offering. That would add internet access and phone service to our already considerable cable TV bill.
Meanwhile, the other Comcast twin, their Business Class division, is routinely pitching us on phone service and cable TV. Every time they offer I ask if they can offer cable TV to home-office-based small businesses. Each time they answer that, no, they can’t.
Further, I tell both of them that we run our IP phones over the internet connection that they provide, so we have no need of their voice service. In the past I told them that we used a hosted voice service provided by my employer.
I have repeatedly made the effort to explain to both of the twins about how their evil other-twin has convinced me to use the aspect of their offering that they are currently proposing to sell me. Every time we go through this dance they take note of my reply , apologize politely and let me go about my day.
Of course, the offers in the mail, from both divisions, never stop coming.
How hard could it be for a company like Comcast to cross-reference the business and residential users before dropping a new list on their call center staff? Do they even appreciate how idiotic they appear by constantly trying to sell us a service that we’re already buying from another part of the company? Or worse, a service that we have repeatedly turned-down?
Does it not cost them to repeatedly make us the same offer that has been refused a dozen times before? It seems to me that tracking such data about customers is as easy as keeping track of our address or billing details. They’ve certainly managed to do that over the years.
Maybe the Comcast twins aren’t so much idiots as squabbling siblings. They should exchange information once in a while. Keep track of when they’ve been turned down and don’t make the same offer again for a good, long while. Make an effort to know something about the customer rather than assume we’re all the same. Such consideration could help them with the image problem described in the Marketplace interview.