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More on Bulldog and BBC Watchdog
Thursday 08 September 2005 19:10:00 by Andrew Ferguson

Tuesday 6th September saw Andrew Morley from Bulldog talking to Nicky Campbell on the BBC consumer affairs show Watchdog - details of the item can be found here.

Some Bulldog customers and posters on our forums raised concerns over what they perceived as continued marketing from Bulldog after they got the impression from the TV item that marketing had stopped. We have asked Bulldog about this issue and received the following statement earlier today.

"The Watchdog programme focused on a period earlier in the summer when there was a customer service problem. Bulldog acknowledges these problems and has apologised to all customers who experienced problems with their service. These problems provoked suddenly increased call volumes to our call centre from mid-July, which overloaded the system with the result that some customers could not get through. We have acted quickly both to resolve the technical issues and to increase customer support. We believe we are close to resolving most outstanding issues. The number of customer agents has now increased to 250, and we will have 300 in place from the end of September. Active customer complaints are now down to a fraction of one per cent of the customer base and call-waiting time for the call-centre is down to approximately two minutes.

Bulldog acted swiftly to cancel all possible advertising and direct mail as soon as it learnt of the scale of this problem. Our next major TV, radio, print and outdoor advertising campaign has been delayed pending the resolution of the customer call centre issues. Bulldog is managing customer sales intake at a level at which customer care levels can be maintained. Interestingly the volume of new customer enquiries has continued at the same level as when the advertising was running as enquiries are primarily driven by personal recommendation."

Andrew Morley, Bulldog

So while not all marketing activity has ceased, but they have put on hold the next major campaign push. In theory this should diminish the number of orders, but it appears sales are continuing at some pace, and this is believed to be down to personal recommendations.

Looking at the types of post on our forums, life is quieter than it was a few months ago, suggesting that things are improving at Bulldog. No ISP can be 100% perfect and with online forums generally only attracting posters who have problems it is hard to form a total view of a provider sometimes. With the news last week of an investigation by Ofcom into the problems, it may be best to sit back and see what this brings to light.

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