Marketing Challenges In The Energy Industry

July 28, 2022

Eliza Borbély



The energy industry is constantly surprising us with groundbreaking innovations and new ways to supply the world with energy. But the sector needs to produce the right marketing to succeed, and it can be challenging to deliver a message that engages customers. 

Energy companies face growing pressure from regulations; they must address climate change and build a more sustainable future. The European Commission represented the REPowerEU Plan to reduce Europe’s dependence on fossil fuels from Russia and to save energy. Without practical and emerging technologies like electrical grid infrastructure, long-duration energy storage, clean hydrogen and sustainable aviation fuel, it won’t be possible to reach these goals.

In this challenging environment, the energy sector needs to keep customers from churning and has to deal with new competitors. Customers are using price-comparison websites like Verivox in Germany, therefore, companies need to personalize and manage their customer base more effectively to keep their long-term old users. By tracking the customers’ online and offline behaviour, knowing their energy consumption, age, gender and street-by-street location they have the ability to prevent the loss. For example, they can target customers who use more energy than average and offer them energy-storage systems that they might be interested in.  

The sector is going through a transition phase, and the customers expect more from their providers. The industry relies heavily on market research, which gives them a better understanding of current trends and allows them to discover new opportunities and develop long-term advantages. Energy companies should gather information on every contact with a customer. Combining different internal data can create valuable insight and a comprehensive view of each customer. They need to focus on data storing, selecting and analyzing to identify customers at risk of churn. 

Companies can identify countless traces and triggers that customers leave, which can help to find the right moment to contact them. Responding quickly is more important than creating the perfect response, and later they can learn from their mistakes by analyzing customer behaviour. To be able to improve their campaign effectively, energy companies need to find the right methods and technology, however, the handling of real-time data creates new IT challenges. 

Millennials and Gen Z supports energy providers that invest in renewable energy. They prefer individual expression over labels, as a result, they seem more interested in climate change and sustainability than other generations. They spend most of their time online, which makes social media visibility very important, but the digital experience with energy providers is one of the worst from all industries. With ethical consumption they expect companies to take actions to lower global carbon emissions. They need to trust in the company, if it advertises 100% renewable energy, the communication has to be transparent about it, and they need to see proof. 3 out of 4 Millenials and Gen Z’s are willing to pay extra for sustainable product offerings, according to the Nielsen Sustainability Imperative.

The energy industry has to tell authentic stories, be relevant and fast. Content marketing can be used to make complex products more accessible to customers. New technologies in sustainability are forcing rapid transformation in the sector. Even though the energy industry is known for its innovative products, it struggles to market them effectively. Product and service descriptions must be written to help customers understand what they are purchasing. The industry is inundated with text-packed product descriptions that are hard for a typical customer to comprehend. Companies must show their value, bridge the knowledge gap, and create engaging content.

For example, Stream Energy is constantly publishing content about how to cut costs and make decisions that benefit the environment. It shows that the customers are their priority, which builds trust and a growing network. Providing valuable content helps current and potential customers to make the most of their offers.

Putting the audience’s needs at the center of the company’s message is essential. The brand can build empathy with storytelling. Energy affects everyone, but if customers don’t see the people and the personality behind the company, they do not connect emotionally. Personality constructs a long-term trust in every industry.

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