Viasat recently introduced a text-based customer service tool designed to allow residential subscribers to easily get account info and make basic service requests.
So far, about 9,000 customers are using the service, and comments on the ViaSat Community forum suggest it’s a hit.
“Just signed up for the cellphone alerts and they are great,” one subscriber wrote. “Much more convenient for me than a phone call to Exede or even the (MyExede) dashboard.”
The service lets customers perform automated service diagnostics, change their installation date, reboot the modem, check data usage, learn about outages, pay their bill and even disable or enable the new Video Data Extender. Viasat can also text those customers real-time usage notifications when they reach 70 and 100 percent of their allowed data, and when their dish is misaligned.
Primarily designed as a service for subscribers, it’s also expected to decrease the number of calls made to Customer Care.
“Customers don’t want to call; they’d rather use self-service tools like this,” Customer Communications Specialist Ann Bender said. “We know changing installation dates is one of the biggest call drivers. This provides customers a great way to change their installation date right on the phone. Just text ‘reschedule’ and it will offer you other time slots.”
To date, customers are learning about the service via an email asking them to opt in. Viasat staff hope many more customers will come on board over time.
To opt in, a customer texts JOIN to 20715. They are then asked to provide a phone number and zip code, and agree to the terms of service.
“We’ve had no problems with registration, and we’re seeing a really high take rate once they start the process,” Bender said.
The project was a joint effort of the Customer Communications and Denver Engineering’s SMS teams.