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.
E Source recently did some research on the impacts of using prepaid rebate cards in lieu of traditional rebate checks for utility demand-side management (DSM) programs. We found compelling evidence that rebate cards do, in fact, cut DSM program costs, but possibly at the expense of customer satisfaction, although this latter theory is a bit murky.
What’s the right way to arrange your nascent customer experience management team? Do you have to have a chief customer officer? What are the best practices for channeling voice-of-the-customer data into the business to truly transform the customer experience? What lessons from other industries can utilities harness to shorten the learning curve?
When I agreed to write about three things I learned during our website redesign, I wondered how I could limit it to that small number. This has been one giant learning experience. Our current site was launched when the Harry Potter actors were just entering puberty and Palm Pilots were the rage for tracking schedules. We would have done this sooner, but we didn’t have the money or man-hours necessary to do it right. Then in 2012, we took a hard look at every way we interacted with our customers, and the website kept rising to the surface as a key touchpoint.
As the E Source team gears up for our spring Utility Customer Experience Conference, we’re curious about where you are in your customer experience journey at your company. It’s time to take a short (fun!) quiz to find out where you stand.
The trouble with so many conferences—and the thing that keeps us all from retaining and applying what we learn—is that they’re too passive. Things are going to be different with the 2014 E Source Utility Customer Experience Conference in Orlando, Florida. If you’re looking for a conference where you can really get your hands dirty, this is the one.
Customers never cease to amaze me. Learning what makes them tick and how we can connect with them is a never-ending journey. Over the past year or two, I’ve learned a few things about our customers that have surprised me, and I’ve dispelled some myths. Perhaps some of these insights are also true of your customers.
Market research studies show that customers who are more aware of energy-efficiency (EE) programs have improved satisfaction, even if they don’t participate in those programs. However, increased program awareness can often lead to higher program participation rates, and this augmented level of participation improves customer satisfaction as well as brand perception. Utilities that wish to enhance their customer satisfaction and brand ratings, as well as increase program participation, may, therefore, want to focus on raising awareness of EE programs through targeted marketing efforts to both business and residential customers.
Do you want to hear where two of the region’s top policy experts think Boulder’s and Colorado’s energy future could be going? Join your fellow energy colleagues on Thursday, January 23, for an informative and fun evening at the Rocky Mountain chapter of the Association of Energy Service Professionals Energy Hour. Both Will Toor, former Boulder mayor and Boulder County commissioner, and Tom Plant, former Colorado state representative and current director of the Governor’s Energy Office, will participate in a lively panel discussion. Come check it out!
At E Source we’ve developed a lot of expertise over the years in energy-efficiency retrofits for commercial buildings—which measures are available, how well they work, how to evaluate their cost-effectiveness, and how to look at the interactions among the various measures. It was thus gratifying when we got a chance to work with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and several other organizations to put all this knowledge into a series of Advanced Energy Retrofit Guides (AERGs) covering grocery stores, K–12 schools, and healthcare facilities. Other AERGs discuss office buildings and retail outlets.