Are You Annoying Your Customers?

Posted by Ashley Nicholls on January 13, 2017 at 9:30 AM
How many times do you want to hear from a brand in a given month, week, day? 
What about your cable company? Or cell phone provider? 
Now, how about your energy company?
Without structured oversight you may be more of a nuisance to your customers than a trusted advisor. 
The problem: Ineffective CRMs + Redundant email tools + Siloed Organizations
Here's a scenario.
Joe is an electric customer of Utility XYZ, an electric and gas utility.
In a given week, Joe might get:
1. A billing email
2. An offer to go paperless in another email
3. An energy efficiency program offer for fridge recycling
4. A direct mail piece on home audits
5. A storm alert
6. An offer to convert to natural gas
7. Served a banner ad on wifi thermostats (he's a great fit for this)
8. Served a Facebook ad for the utility storm app
Do you see the problem here? Each communication is valid and with the intent of being relevant and helpful, but they are all owned by different teams at the utility.
Now let's just imagine that Joe is both an electric and a natural gas customer of the same utility. Depending on the back end systems of that utility, he might have two different accounts. And what would happen in that scenario? 
Everything, times two.
Now, if Utility XYZ had implemented a CRM (like Salesforce) to manage the entire customer relationship, at least we'd be able to see that Joe was probably, just this week, a bit over the communications from his utility.
But let's say that a total Salesforce integration just isn't realistic for your utility. 
What then?
Frequency capping.
What is Frequency Capping?
Ensuring that your customers receive only a certain number of messages in a given time period across your ENTIRE organization. That's right, the entire organization, including any external partners who might do the communicating on your behalf. 
How do you do it?
Oversight, editorial calendars, and partners willing to work with one another in service of the customer experience. 
Why is it important?
To ensure you break through the clutter, aren't wasting media spend, and avoiding opt-outs from valued customers. 
And honestly, who wants to be annoying? 
Also - as an energy provider you have so much data related to your customers. 
And in the age of Amazon the expectation is that you SHOULD know if the same customer might get multiple program promotions from multiple groups inside your organization - and fix it.



Topics: Customer-Centric Marketing, Utility Communications, Data and Analytics, Digital Transformation and User Experience, Innovation, Marketing Strategy and Best Practices, Audience Segmentation