MTN has been rated the best operator in South Africa by consumers, while Rain and Telkom received the worst marks, according to research firm BrandsEye. The firm’s latest South African Telco Sentiment Index, conducted in partnership with Deloitte Africa analysed about two million social media posts about Cell C, MTN, Rain, Telkom, and Vodacom throughout the past year.
The index found that some operators received significantly more negativity on social media platforms than others. Each post received a sentiment rating – positive, neural, or negative – which was used to calculate a Net Sentiment ranking for each telecom operator.
The report says Rain ranked last, scoring over 20 percentage points below the industry average. On the other end of the spectrum, having scored the lowest negative sentiment and highest positive sentiment, MTN ranked first. Cell C placed second, while Telkom placed second-last despite seeing the most annual customer growth, said the firm.
While seeing only a small advantage in quality, consumers were most satisfied with MTN’s speed and coverage. Rain, on the other hand, saw above-industry levels of risk conversation about downtime, evidencing network quality as one of its major weaknesses.
Vodacom, meanwhile, ranked in third place, scoring a relatively stable negative sentiment of 30.7 percent, while Telkom followed with a negative sentiment ranking of 41.5 percent.
In terms of response rate, Cell C replied to the largest portion of its priority conversation, while also responding to customers in the shortest time, whereas Telkom, the only state-owned enterprise in the mix, appeared unable to compete with its private rivals when it came to online responsiveness.