Customer engagement

The Obama administration threw a its third datathon (my word) this week dubbed the  “Energy Datapalooza.” It featured about 150 entrepreneurs, policymakers and software developers, among others, and aspired to offer ways to learn new ways to save energy and lower bills from what is supposed to be free and secure data. Government and private…

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Inc. magazine is out with the 2012 version of its fastest growing private U.S. companies. Astrum Solar of Annapolis Junction, Maryland landed the #2 spot by creating a culture, recruiting the talent, establishing a customer focus and securing utility capital to sell and lease solar electric systems to homeowners as good, or better, than any…

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More companies are setting formal energy cost-cutting goals and in the process making energy management a strategic discipline. That is one dimension of Deloitte’s second annual survey designed to help executives make energy-related investment and business decisions. Conducted for Deloitte’s Center for Energy Solutions by the Harrison Group market research firm, the survey also found…

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NOW, we’re getting somewhere with the Green Button Initiative. Nine investor-owned utilities from across the country have jumped on board enabling an updated total of about 27 million households to access their electricity usage data. This is a huge step forward for motivated consumers to better understand how they can save on their energy bills…

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The White House wants it. Some California utilities get it. But will more than a few U.S. utilities sign on to help ratepayers better understand how they use electricity with one-click access to their data? One year after the Obama Administration began talking about the idea, and in the roughly six months since it formally…

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There is progress but there is also a long way to go to engage consumers in Smart Grid apps and their benefits. In the Smart Grid Consumer Collaborative’s 2012 “State of the Consumer Report,” released today, four fresh themes emerge. Each one, and the recurring themes, continue to wrestle with the reality that virtually all…

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Early lessons from utilities deploying proactive smart grid programs with their customers point to potentially significant energy savings if consumers are engaged with targeted communications they find relevant to their values and lifestyles. When matched with stronger-than-expected gains being achieved through more traditional efficiency programs found in a report out this month by the Consortium…

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New research out this morning for the Smart Grid Consumer Collaborative affirms what what is needed for utilities, and their vendors, need to accomplish for smart grid applications to grow more quickly: educate, educate and educate some more. Here are the key findings, followed by selected top-line implications. The research, conducted by Market Strategies International…

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Striving to become U.S. consumers’ “home energy department” store with a “Geek Squad” for energy appliances and software applications, Best Buy Senior Vice President Neil McPhail kicked off the company’s move to become the go-to resource for understanding, controlling and reducing consumption while “maximizing” their lifestyle. Stores in Chicago, Houston and San Francisco are in…

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One of the most widely respected researchers of human behavior,Robert Cialdini, asserts there are six rules of influence when reaching out to the public.  They may have a lot to contribute to effectively engaging utility ratepayers and consumers about using energy more wisely through smart grid applications. Cialdini serves on the Scientific Advisory Board of…

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