By Patrick Avenell

While Telstra prepares to launch Australia’s first 4G smartphone on Monday, Optus had its own launch today — a new online forum for consumers to share experiences.

Whilst not as exciting as Telstra’s launch, that hasn’t stopped Optus’ director of digital media, Austin R Bryan from overflowing with enthusiasm.

“Our customers possess a wealth of first-hand knowledge of our products and services and My Optus Community aims to encourage them to share their expertise to help one another,” Bryan said.

“One of the best ways to measure the satisfaction of our customers is through feedback. With the introduction of a community forum we hope to build rapport with our customers and provide them with more choice and control in how they interact with us.”

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One of the more interesting pieces of information from this announcement is that Optus employs 13 fulltime social media “specialists”. That works out as only 10.7 characters per staff member per Tweet.