Let me start out by saying customer service can make or break a company. Good customer service skills have been emphasized in every job I've ever had (service and professional). Over the years I've come to understand customers are the foundation of a company (the company exists to make a profit by serving the customers/public) and happy loyal customers are the foundation of a successful company. As such, customers are entitled to a certain type of treatment. Customers can reasonably expect:

1) Responsiveness

2) Attention to detail

3) Empathy

4) Promptness

5) Respect

6) Fulfillment of the agreement or promise

(FYI: Now some customers can be mean and disrespectful, but I tend to think that polite and respectful customers get the best treatment (at least in theory). So I always take on a positive attitude when talking to customer service reps.)

I have been a customer of Cincinnati Bell for just over three weeks. During the three weeks I have received the worst customer service I have ever experienced. I recently relocated for work and needed to set up internet and cable for my new place. I called Cincinnati Bell a week and a half in advance of my move to schedule installation. During this initial conversation I negotiated the details of my agreement with a Cincinnati Bell representative. Before moving, I had AT&T in Columbus and their customer service was excellent, their product exceeded my expectations, and their price was very competitive. So my expectations were above standard. Cincinnati Bell’s package offered less features and was priced higher but the rep seemed willing to negotiate. We eventually reached an agreement. This agreement included 3 months of free HBO, Cinemax, and Showtime (AT&T offered this to me as a new customer).

Fast forward – installation day arrives. My spouse and I wait four hours on a day off for the technician to arrive. The technician never arrived! No phone call, no email, no communication at all! Naturally, my spouse and I were confused, upset and skeptical. This is not a first impression you want to make to a new customer. I call Cincinnati Bell customer service. The 1st rep informs me that the previous tenant never canceled his service so I needed to go to the local Cincinnati Bell office to prove I now lease the apartment. I asked why didn’t they advise me of this prior to the installation?! She had no answer and was completely apathetic. I ask to speak with a supervisor. She agrees to transfer me to a supervisor and places me back in the call ***. An hour into the call, the 2nd rep answers the phone. She claims there is not documentation of the conversation I just had with the previous rep. She tells me that the fact that the previous tenant did not cancel his service has no effect of my service. Now I’m confused and upset because I’m receiving conflicting information from Cincinnati Bell reps. I didn’t feel comfortable with the conflicting information so I requested to speak with a supervisor. I’m placed on hold for another 25 minutes. A supervisor comes on the phone and advises me that the previous rep was incorrect. She advises me to go to the local store and prove I now rent the apartment. It seemed unreasonable to me that the technician could not verify my identity and lease during the installation. However, the supervisor was completely apathetic and offered no consolation or alternative solutions.

And so, I went into the local store on the date of the installation no show (ruined my entire day). Of course, Cincinnati Bell is having a big mobile phone promo event so the store was packed to capacity. I had to wait about an hour to speak with a rep and prove my identity. This rep was actually the first person that seemed to care. He got on the phone and called to schedule a new appointment. Due to work constraints, the earliest they could come would be a week from the original installation date. That’s a full week without internet. My spouse often works from home and was greatly inconvenienced by this.

Next installation date arrives. Technician shows up this time. He is moderately friendly and gets the job done quickly. He leaves and my spouse and I sit down to finally enjoy our cable and internet but there’s a problem. There was no HBO, no Cinemax, and no Showtime as promised to me three weeks earlier. The promise used to entice me was not fulfilled. I called Cincinnati Bell a couple of days later. I spent over two hours on the phone and spoke with 6 different people. Apparently this company has not understanding of “first call resolution.” Each rep I spoke with sought out a way to transfer me – they didn’t want to take ownership of the customer’s issue.

Finally, I speak to a rep named “Maria” with the employee ID number 6753 (allegedly). She stated Cincinnati Bell typically only offers a month of free HBO but she agreed to 3 months if I was promised this by another rep. She stated I would have the service promised me within 24 hours of the call. More than 48 hours later I still do not have the promised service and Maria, the Cincinnati Bell rep, never called me back the next day as she agreed to do.

Nearly every Cincinnati Bell rep with which I have been in contact has been completely apathetic. I maintained a polite demeanor throughout this entire experience.

I can say that I am truly hurt by the customer service experience I’ve had with Cincinnati Bell to date. It hurts to feel devalued especially when you try to live by the golden rule. As a paying customer, I had fair expectations and they were not met. Usually I would simply take my business elsewhere because good companies earn loyalty from customers.

Unfortunately telecom/media companies have come to believe that they no longer need to earn your loyalty because customers often have few options due to unchecked monopolistic practices.

This leads to customer resentment and reviews like so.

Review about: Cincinnati Bell Phone Service.

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Columbus, Ohio, United States #821744

Re: complaint #391802, I had a similar experience. No internet service at our home, CB was called to schedule a service appointment.

They could not get a service tech to our home for 6 days. On the scheduled day, we were given a 4 hour window in which the tech was to show up. He no showed. And didn't bother to call either.

I called CB and they said he was still coming. 2 1/2 hours later, he still had not arrived. I called CB again nod was assured he was still coming, never mind that it was going to be my bedtime by then. I finally get a call from a tech who says he is just now leaving Cinti to come to my house.

A 45 minute drive. Lousy service, lousy customer consideration. Absolutely you will speak to NO ONE without a heavy, foreign accent.

What a miserable experience. Save yourself frustration and go with someone else.

Cincinnati, Ohio, United States #771294


I am a Fiber Optic Technician for Cincinnati Bell, and I am very sorry that you have had to deal with these issues. Please know that I for one care very much about your experience, and deeply value you as a customer.

I also apologize that I am just now seeing this.

I realize that this may be a bit late but I would be more than happy to try and make this right.

Please feel free to contact me.

Ronald Liles

Premise Technician - FiOptics

Field Operations

Cincinnati Bell Telephone Co.


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