Search form

Share

E Source Blog

Welcome to the E Source Blog! Our staff will share insights and observations about life at E Source, our events, our research, and other fun stuff.

December 13, 2013 | Rich Goodwin - Product Manager, Customer Experience & Marketing | 0 comments
A lot of customers have their first contact with a utility by either accessing the website or calling the contact center. How you present your utility can make a first impression that lasts a long time—good or bad! So it’s important that these two contact channels be designed to provide the best possible experience for your customers. E Source just completed its Review of North American Electric and Gas Company IVRs: 2013 and its Review of North American Electric and Gas Company Websites: 2013. Our findings were enlightening.

read more >>

December 12, 2013 | Eryc Eyl - Senior Associate, Customer Experience & Marketing | 0 comments
I’ve spoken with several utilities that have a vague, uneasy sense that their culture won’t deliver the optimal customer experience. Often, they look to customer experience leaders outside the industry—Zappos, Google, Amazon—as models for the culture they want to create. But here’s the hard truth: No other organization’s culture is the right culture for your organization. Each utility has its own unique personality, mission, vision, and goals. And a healthy culture is the culture that enables your organization to achieve these things.

read more >>

December 10, 2013 | Kate Merson - Research Manager | 0 comments
Each year, we get dozens upon dozens of inquiries from our members asking which utilities are offering on-bill financing (OBF) programs to spur their customers to take energy-efficiency action. Even more importantly, they’re wondering which programs are having success. Well, this year, we researched nearly 40 utility on-bill financing programs to give our members answers. What did we learn? For the full scoop, check out the two reports we published on the subject.

read more >>

December 7, 2013 | Beth Hartman - Senior Research Associate | 0 comments
Using appropriate language when asking people to get involved with climate-change mitigation can be just as important as the words we use when discussing prevention. For instance, telling people to “prepare for extreme weather” is much more motivating than asking them to “adapt to climate change,” which is a vague and potentially controversial request. Moreover, the idea of being prepared is a fundamental value for traditionally self-reliant Americans, and individual weather events are extremely tangible and specific, easily capturing people’s attention.

read more >>

December 6, 2013 | Kym Wootton - Senior Manager, Marketing & Communications | 0 comments
Have you seen our holiday card yet? If not, you’ve got to take a minute now to check it out! This one-take-only holiday card required two levels of involvement: Staff could either be front and center as lip-synchers or part of the background as crowds placed throughout the office. Thankfully, we had 25 people sign up to lip-synch and almost 40 who wanted to appear in the background of the video.

read more >>

December 2, 2013 | Eryc Eyl - Senior Associate, Customer Experience & Marketing | 0 comments
Booz & Co. 2013 Culture and Change Management Survey recently found that 84 percent of more than 2,200 respondents felt that their organizational culture was critical to business success, 96 percent (!) said their organization needed some kind of culture change, and fully 51 percent thought their culture was in need of a major overhaul. By now, most utilities that have embraced the importance of the customer experience (CE) have also realized that their company culture plays a huge role in CE. You know it takes a customer-oriented culture to create the rational and emotional perceptions you want your customers to have. But how do you make that big switch to a customer-oriented culture? And what the heck is culture anyway?

read more >>

November 21, 2013 | Mike Weedall - Senior Advisor, Strategic Customer Relations | 0 comments
Energy efficiency has many of the characteristics—mostly lost revenue—that challenge the traditional utility business model, which is based upon throughput and growing sales. Yet, energy efficiency will always be the most cost-effective resource, while also delivering environmental, economic development, and bill benefits for a community. The fact remains that as utility retail revenues stay flat or start to decline, the financial drivers for utilities will often see energy efficiency as just another factor to challenging today's utility financial health.

read more >>

November 19, 2013 | Lindsey Sajban - Marketing Assistant | 0 comments
Do you need a breath of fresh air? Then you need Jess Rife. She’s everything our events team needs: She’s organized, calm, and can delegate with kindness and patience. Jess always has a smile on her face; she’s funny, always positive, and has an enviable ability to brighten anyone’s day. She’s the only person I know who gets excited about CrossFit, and she’s always encouraging others to take a class or do a monthlong plank challenge. If you haven’t had the chance to meet her, be sure to stop by the registration desk at your next E Source event.

read more >>

November 15, 2013 | Tom Tate - Manager of Marketing and Member Services for Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative | 0 comments
Good day, or evening, depending upon when you happen to read this blog. I’m Tom Tate, a utility marketing person with nearly three decades of experience in both investor-owned and cooperative utilities. Currently I’m the manager of marketing and member services for Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative in Sussex, New Jersey. The smallest utility I’ve worked for, it gives me a real opportunity to interact with my members—or customers—directly, which is something I do enjoy. So, what three things have I learned in my utility career? This actually took quite a bit of cogitation, since I’ve learned an amazing number of things. But, I’m going to limit the blog to the top three. Here goes.

read more >>

Topics: Marketing
November 15, 2013 | Eryc Eyl - Senior Associate, Customer Experience & Marketing | 1 comments
Since we’ve just released the results of our 2013 utility web and IVR benchmarking study, my mind turns to the place where customer experience (CE) conversations often start—and where they also used to stop—customer satisfaction. Is it just me, or is the evolution of CE in the utility industry picking up some serious momentum? Though I’m not new to CE work, I am new to the utility industry, having just joined E Source two months ago. For me, it’s exciting to see so many utilities expressing sincere curiosity and concern about their customers’ rational and emotional perceptions of them. A holistic and complex view of CE seems to be taking hold among utilities, a view that encompasses not only customer service and satisfaction but also the broad range of interactions that occur when a customer researches, orders, pays for, or cancels products or services. However, two foundational concepts and concerns remain at the heart of the utility CE discussion: user experience (usually connected to a utility’s website or automated phone system) and customer satisfaction (usually related to reactive customer service agents and processes).

read more >>