Comcast sees the need to improve its reputation in the public relations department. In order to do that, the company plans to triple the number of people on its social media service team who will be responsible in addressing customer problems as soon as they pop up.
Frustrated Comcast customers would usually vent their woes in high-profile social media channels. In one embarrassing incident, a customer posted the recording of his conversation with a Comcast rep who had refused to his request on cancelling his service. The eight-minute recorded call went viral after the customer posted it online while urging other Comcast users to share their own experience of the company's poor customer service.
"We have thousands of people answering service calls on the phone, and for many customers that's great. But some people would rather go online, and we want to make sure to give them that choice," said Jennifer Khoury, spokeswoman for Comcast.
At present, the company has over 73,000 Twitter followers. Its Xfinity Internet service's Facebook page now has 5.9 million likes.
Khoury added that more and more customers are turning into social media when they want to reach out.
Tom Karinshak, Comcast's head of Customer Service, said that apart from adding more "social care" specialists in the team, the company is giving them more tools to enhance the way they could help customers.
"With a much bigger team, we'll be able to support customers across more platforms," said Karinshak. "And we'll be able to get to them faster. A larger team also means that we'll be able to increase bicoastal and bilingual coverage to make sure we are available 24/7 to customers who speak either English or Spanish."
Comcast's 20-member social care team addresses customer complaints through various social platforms such as Reddit, Facebook and Twitter. They also schedule appointments for tech visits to the customer's home.
There are now 22 million Comcast customers nationwide. That number will likely increase if the company's proposal to acquire Time Warner Cable for $45 billion earns government approval.
Even if the 40 new hires would be added to the company's social care staff and make the total number of team members reach 60, it may still be not enough to handle queries from millions of its subscribers.
It remains to be seen how the expansion would enhance the company's reputation in the world of customer service. It may be small but at least there's a start.