Generational Segmentation and Energy Efficiency

Posted by Energy Wire on November 13, 2014 at 3:21 PM

The industry is evolving. The customer is shifting. The rules are changing. And while electricity is still one of the most precious commodities powering every minute of our day... It's no longer simple like it used to be. 

Between distributed generation demands, net metering and technology innovations, there are hard choices for you to make, complex programs to manage, and new opportunities to navigate. 

This great revolution also brings a new kind of customer. One that is increasingly aware of their choices and opportunities when it comes to their energy use. It's up to you to make them comfortable, confident and educated in what you can or do provide them.

How can you do this in an effective, meaningful way?

You've got to lose the "one size fits all" approach- it will not move the needle when inspiring an audience to take action. Therefore, audience segmentation is becoming widely regarded as a "must have" when it comes to communicating and connecting with customers. While there are many ways to segment, one effective strategy is generational segmentation. 

For example, let's look at Millennials. According to the Brookings Institute, Millennials are growing increasingly important to the future of utilities.

  • In five years, they will make up 1/3 of the adult population. 
  • In ten years, they will make up 75% of the work force. 

Here are three characteristics of this generation that pose a direct impact on traditional utilities:

  • They're socially conscious. They prioritize social causes that align with theirs, including the environment.
  • They distrust big companies.
  • They are more favorable to government regulation.

In addition, this customer wants more information, services and products that meet this criteria - cheap, convenient, and cool. They demand information instantaneously, and that it be constantly accessible and personalized to them.

These are some of the main challenges confronting traditional utilities today. 

So, while Millennials are the customer of the future (and arguably the most important to wrap your head around) a deeper understanding of the needs and wants of your full market segmentation can allow you to better target your customers with the relevant information they're seeking.

Over the next few weeks, our Connections team will be analyzing the best ways to engage with customers across generations, providing tactical recommendations that will help you connect with your audience in a more meaningful way. 

Lauren Bell / Engagement Manager / 802.862.8261 / lbell@ksvc.com

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