In October 2009, Verizon attacked AT&T with their controversial “there’s a map for that” campaign. Claiming they had 5 times more 3G coverage they hit AT&T where it hurt the most: their reputation for dropped calls, poor coverage, and slow speeds.
AT&T, after losing a restraining order to stop the ads, launched a response attack of their own in November. With Luke Wilson as their spokesperson they advertised 97% coverage of all Americans and “the best coverage worldwide”.
Acknowledging that corporate campaigns are less credible than word-of-mouth and referrals, AT&T turned to the public. They drove people to their Facebook Page where they held an open forum in their discussion board.
The result? As of December 15th there were 81 discussions with 935 posts. I took one sample thread started by AT&T entitled “Southwest Region Network”. Unfortunately for AT&T, 89% of the public posts were negative. “You’re basically maintaining a fan page for Verizon”, wrote one visitor.
The following slides show the first 12 hours of activity with each post rated as positive or negative and key quotes highlighted.