Twitter to the Rescue – real time customer support from London Midland Trains

This is an example of what I think is great real-time engagement with customers. It’s
about London Midland Trains and how they use Twitter, which I’ve mentioned before

The story is as follows. Our hero, is heading off to see his favourite football team play. He has to get across the city, which is a challenge on any day. The story unfolds…………(the tweets timeline starts with the earliest at the bottom of the box)

Phase 1. Getting to the Game

Today there has been an incident which has caused major problems, particularly for his transport provider of choice, London Midland Trains.

So far so good.

Alternative arrangements have been suggested over Twitter by London Midland Trains.

A few adjustments to the travel plans  and he makes it to the game (with the help of ‘best wife’).

Phase 2. Thinking about the journey home.

Must admit, I’ve been in this situation myself a few times. Getting home isn’t really a priority until the game is over.

It’s not looking good for our intrepid traveller.

Phase 3. The setback.

Things don’t look good at all.

Then the London Midland Twitter folks come to the rescue and there’s route home possible. Phew!

I find the ‘real time’ element of this amazing. One of the great benefits is that anyone else who is having problems travelling can also ‘listen in’ to the Twitter conversation and get the advice.

Phase 4. The happy ending.

Our hero gets home safely, AND the team wins (3 nil!), AND London Midland Twitter get a public thank you.

Brilliant! A win, win, win situation.

So, what’s the PONT?

  1. Real time customer support is achievable by using Twitter.
  2. In the end a potentially upset customer, understands your position and says thanks, in public.
  3. Just imagine the applications it could be used for across other public services.

About WhatsthePONT

I'm from Old South Wales and I'm interested almost everything. Narrowing it down a bit: cooperatives, social enterprises, decent public services, complexity science, The Cynefin Framework, behavioural science and a sustainable future. In 2018/19 I completed a Winston Churchill Travelling Fellowship, looking at big cooperative enterprises and social businesses in NE Spain and the USA. You can find out more here:

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