I love Verizon. They work. Their systems work. I am saying this even though I am not their cell or wireless customer. I envy those Verizon customers who can talk on their phone in a tunnel, at the subway, on top of a mountain. Their 'Can You Hear Me Now?" campaign is worded perfectly. It addresses an issue every other cell phone user in the US experiences and coins it as a theme. It's part of jokes, it's part of conversations. Simple and therefore viral.
Verizon impressed me with their twittering customer service. My colleague Jeff who had a problem with his Verizon service twittered about it and got an almost instant reply from a Verizon blogger who saw his message. His technical issue was not resolved on the spot, but Jeff was so impressed with the approach, he told at least 20 people about this fast response and genuine care from Verizon.
So what happened with the twittering teddy? (Check it out at http://2pointhome.com/) This is a semi-fictional character who is supposed to represent all the help Verizon can offer to upgrade homes and solve networking issues...I think...The site is a bit busy, first introducing the twittering teddy, then building stories around him, grassroots events, DIY tips, etc.
I think the twittering teddy speaks more to marketers then to the typical Verizon customer. Twitter and Web 2.0 are not mainstream terms. So, the clever tag line of 'how 2.0' is probably lost on many. Verizon does better when it tells a simple story and gets to the core of the problem.