Case Study

Deutsche Telekom Drives Engagement and Co-Creation Through Community

Deutsche Telekom is one of the world's leading integrated telecommunications companies, with around 151 million mobile customers, 30 million fixed-network lines, and more than 17 million broadband lines. The Group provides fixed network, mobile communications, Internet and IPTV products and services for consumers and ICT solutions for business customers and corporate customers. Deutsche Telekom is present in more than 50 countries and has approximately 228,000 employees worldwide.

  • Goal

    To provide fast and reliable customer service, improve search engine optimization (SEO), generate ideas for future products and services and achieve satisfied customers who convert into brand ambassadors.

  • Solution

    Migrate to a Lithium-powered community to incentivize membership through gamification elements (such as kudos and engagement-level rankings), generate superusers and leverage the community for product feedback and co-creation.1

“The Telekom community offers our customers a platform on which they can exchange questions and share experiences regarding Deutsche Telekom products and services. The content of the community is largely user generated. This high quality content is considered particularly credible, especially by potential customers.”

— Bernd Jansen, Head of Internet Sales & Services GK and Social Media, Telekom Germany GmbH

What impact has your community had on your organization and customers?

With the help of crowd intelligence through our community members, inquiries are now answered in record time. Although we have a dedicated customer service team, we wanted to allow experts in the community to offer their insights and assistance to their peers who seek help for specific problems and/or want advice on selecting the right product. The close relationship of many members of the Telekom community is extremely valuable and beneficial. In addition to being a support community, the suggestions and requests of our customers have a big impact. The spectrum ranges from a technical bug that can be fixed to recommendations for developments of future services. For this reason, some of our product managers consistently go to the community to have direct conversations with our customers.

Tell us about your superusers.

The most active users of our support community boast more than 15,000 posts on our platform. These superusers, called “Community Guides,” enjoy assisting other Telekom customers. They are critical members of our community and have developed valuable suggestions on how to improve our community and our products. In turn, they also have organically become our brand advocates.

To understand the digital needs of our users in this age of extreme customer expectations, the Telekom team meets regularly with a group of superusers as well as other active users for workshops and events. These dedicated customers come from all age groups and diverse backgrounds: from self-employed to those intimately familiar with the business deals of Telekom to computer science students who are versed in routers and networking. We gain valuable insights from our superusers’ feedback that we can then put into practice.

How does gamification play a role in your community?

The community team has, in recent years, gathered feedback on how to incentivize members. One important element is gamification. Our most engaged members display badges in their profile. The more posts a member has written, the more kudos they receive, and therefore also the greater rank the member has within the community. Many users have told us in surveys that such awards provide motivation to participate actively. In practice, we have seen that gamification creates motivation for users to try to reach the top in order to be awarded with badges.

What role does your community play in your corporate strategy?

Our Lithium-powered community plays an important role in the online strategy for Telekom. Our user generated content cements our reputation as a customer-oriented company who always puts the customer first.