What do your customers really want to know about energy? And what will make them make efficient choices?

shutterstock_161242466We recently challenged ourselves to think differently about energy efficiency – to remove ourselves from the daily grind of heating & cooling programs, appliance rebates and financing offers. How do we approach participation from a bigger angle?  How do we start the movement that we so desperately need to inspire action across audiences? How do we get people to care about living an efficient life? So, we hit the road to learn what makes your customers tick. Talked to hundreds of people across the northeast and mid-atlantic. We spoke with homeowners, small businesses and even large C & I decision makers. We talked about the barriers, motivators, and benefits of energy efficiency.

The results? Unexpected data and insights into the current mindset of customers on energy efficiency awareness, participation and programs.

But the most compelling piece? The tactical nature of it all.

Rooted in research, here are the six steps we determined increase customer engagement with energy efficiency programs:

  1. Talk to the right customer. Sounds obvious, yet it’s the most common mistake. Most of the time, the person paying the bill is not the same decision maker for system upgrades.
  2. Disrupt the normalized lives of your customers. Show customers the inefficiencies they have adapted to because they’re no longer aware.
  3. Give them a roadmap. Help your customers prioritize and then implement energy efficiency upgrades, allowing them to track where they are on the path to an efficient lifestyle. Right now, your customers simply don’t know where to begin.
  4. Stop talking about energy efficiency. There is a list of misperceptions around the term energy efficiency; energy savings actually inspires more participation.
  5. Empower customers with understanding. Give your customers data they can understand and relate to. Give them the information to properly track their goals and progress.
  6. Provide a guarantee. Is it time? Is it money? Is it simply around a better life? If you want customers to take action, guarantee them something. What does making energy efficient choices actually provide them? The benefits are endless, but your customers don’t know this.

Based on this research, we’re changing the way we communicate about energy efficiency. We’re evolving the conversation into one that our customers can understand and relate to. After all, that’s what a conversation is, right?