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2016 Trends: Energy Efficiency Gets a Data-Driven Refresh

In addition to addressing a new demographic of customers and incorporating solar, energy providers will need to develop fresh approaches to energy efficiency this year. 

Energy efficiency has been central to energy management for years now … and that’s part of the problem. Many existing programs have reached their saturation levels.  We’ve nearly phased out energy inefficient lighting; energy smart appliances are the residential norm in most places; and, behavioral programs can struggle to expand on initial gains. It’s time for energy providers to do something different—to be innovative with data and customer communications, especially since today’s consumers have the power of choice--they can choose from whom they’ll buy their thermostats and other connected devices, from whom they’ll purchase solar, and, in unregulated markets, to whom they’ll pay their power bills.

Increased innovation is possible with data analytics technology. Data and analytics--especially when they come from smart devices--improve program subscription, increase the impact of Behavioral Energy Efficiency programs, help energy providers develop new programs, boost customer satisfaction, drive digital engagement, lend operational insights … and more. All of these results serve to strengthen relationships with customers.  

Let’s talk about how those relationships get stronger, especially with the incorporation of the Internet of Things. In 2016 and beyond, customer communications will revolve around personalized, two-way interactions between energy providers and consumers. Connected home devices, like smart thermostats or appliances, will live at the heart of these connections, transmitting information both ways, and these devices will be in homes everywhere—shipments of them will increase at a compound annual rate of 67 percent, much faster than smartphone or tablet proliferation, hitting 1.8 billion units shipped in 2019, according to BI Insider. 

So, energy providers need software technology that can aggregate the data these devices collect on appliance use, lighting, HVAC and more, and combine it with demographic information, customer histories, and building data. Then, the best of this technology will predict the outcomes of different energy management configurations within a particular household. These predictions are what we pride ourselves on at Tendril, and from these predictive models, our technology can then generate specific energy cost savings tips that are tailored to individual residences.

When energy providers use data analytics technology to educate their customers and bring them relevant, customized, actionable information, they gain these customers’ appreciation and trust. Energy providers can then offer additional energy efficiency products and services, increase sales, and improve acquisition and retention rates in competitive markets. Providers and their customers can form trusting partnerships never before seen in the energy industry.

Are these the kind of relationships you would like to build with your customer base? If so, please get in touch so we can get started immediately.




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