My @Charter Post Follow Up: Customer Service—Actions Speak Louder than Words

As a business, you can tell people all you want that customer service is important to you but the words alone don’t make it true.

A few months back I wrote this article about the great customer service I was receiving from Charter via Twitter. I was impressed by the individual attention and concern for customers that the Twitter reps showed me and other Charter customers.  I stated in the post that it was the reason I hadn’t jumped ship from a service that often saw me getting less than stellar Internet service.

Sadly, Charter quietly discontinued the customer service reps on Twitter late last year.  And to be honest, I think I now know how Baltimore Colts fans must have felt when their team packed up and moved to Indy.  I feel cheated, tricked and worst of all, unimportant.

Sure, the commercials say that Charter has ‘the highest customer satisfaction ever’ but I’m here to tell you that their actions speak louder than their words.  If Charter really cared about customers, they would have recognized that the social media reps were far more helpful than the phone or online chat reps.  The social media reps listened to customers rather than taking them routinely through modem reboots taking up precious time.  The social media reps saw customer as the individuals we are, with differing levels of computer technology know how.  And most importantly, the social media reps made sure that things got fixed, even if that meant that local technicians had their noses bent out of place a little.

Did Charter pause to think about people like me for whom sitting on a phone while someone forces me to go through steps I’ve already tried costs money.  My phone is also my Internet backup, I can’t use the hotspot if I’m on the phone.  I also hate the fact that both phone and online chat reps don’t really listen to you.  No matter how many times you tell them you’ve already tried the shut down, reboot thing, they’ll make you do it again.  That wastes my time and makes me angry.  Well, angrier, because I’m already ticked that my Internet is down…again.

Charter never had the most reliable Internet service here where I am, but their stellar social media customer service kept me loyal.  Too bad Charter didn’t feel that same loyalty to their customers.  Now with each day of hiccuping connections, I find myself looking for a more reliable alternative.

As frustrating as this situation has been for me and other Charter customers personally, it makes a great lesson in what not to do as a business.  Writers are taught to ‘show, don’t tell’ and this is a good rule for customer service as well.  Be active in providing the type of services that make your clients happy.

Amazingly, when you do that, the clients themselves will let others know and you won’t need your own words to try to convince people you care.


Tina Marie Hilton provides online technology services to forward thinking businesses. She writes on her Tips from T.Marie business blog to share insight and information with other small businesses and entrepreneurs. It also makes her feel like that certificate in creative writing isn't going to waste completely.