With an increasing focus on energy efficiency and consumer side demand response there has always been a counter intuitive feel to energy retailers motivating customers to use less of the very commodity they are trying to sell.
But this simple overview may be missing the point.
In recent webinars on customer engagement it has become clear that the silver bullet is customer churn.
The focus of our recent webinar, Takin’ Care of Business – The SME Engagement Opportunity for EU Energy Suppliers, is on how to grab and maintain the attention of busy SME owners.
Repeated case studies and data show that irrespective of the customers’ engagement, the very act of delivering energy efficiency hints, tips and toolkits makes a significant impact on customer churn – as was highlighted by New Zealand’s Mercury Energy in a recent Engerati webinar, How Energy Consumer Engagement Builds Competitive Advantage.
Mackenzie estimates that getting new customers is 5 to 10 times more expensive than retaining existing customers. When you factor in the margins due to regulatory pressures for consumer energy, it does not take long for the figures to stack up.
Compound this with the fact that by giving these customers an updated and different experience from other energy retailers, they can become brand enthusiasts. This would form an ideal stepping stone for utilities to play in the smart home market delivering energy services and remote monitoring amongst other things.
For energy retailers in competitive markets or those preparing to enter competitive markets, energy efficiency is and will become the key platform for engagement and management of churn.
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