A utility’s brand and communications must meet the needs and desires of changing customers and employees. How can and how do utilities strategically brand and market themselves in this changing landscape? This track will explore how companies are enhancing their customer experience, delivering consistent communications and accurate messaging across a variety of channels, utilizing technology to maximize their message, and creating a customer-driven strategy across business units. External communications professionals, social media strategists, digital specialists and contact center employees are encouraged to attend, as are those individuals responsible for developing customer communications strategies.
9:00 AM – 10:15 AM
Enhancing Your Brand Image in a Rapidly Evolving World
Speakers: Mike Wenzlaff, Senior Program Manager, Electric Vehicles, BC Hydro
Russell Henderson, Senior Research Manager, Chartwell, Inc.
A Utility’s brand and reputation are critically important. Every touch-point with customers is an opportunity to enhance that reputation. This session will explore both the opportunities and challenges of keeping up with a strong brand image in the face of a rapidly changing business and customer expectations.
BC Hydro: British Columbia has an ambitious goal to have 100% zero-emission vehicle sales by 2040. This presentation will show how BC Hydro is evolving our brand by using design thinking principles to roll out innovative programs to meet this goal including purchase incentives, building an extensive EV fast-charging network and EV awareness.
Chartwell Inc.: Customer communications during power outages can make or break a company’s reputation. Preparation, restoration and communication are vital. Chartwell will showcase examples where utilities have overcome challenging conditions and emerged with high customer satisfaction and brand perception. The cornerstones to a successful outage communications strategy also will be discussed.
Session sponsored by:
1:00 PM – 2:15 PM
Using Today’s Voice of the Customer to Improve Tomorrow’s Brand Value
Speaker: John McClimans, Digital Content Specialist, Sacramento Municipal Utility District
Lisa Flynn, Manager, Process Improvement, Customer Programs, PG & E
Organizations are using customer insights to drive initiatives and make critical changes to deliver successful results and improve customer satisfaction. Learn how two different utilities leveraged voice of the customer data to drive customer-centric solutions and improve customer communications.
9:00 AM – 10:15 AM
Stand Up and Stand Out: Being Bold in Times of Adversity
Speaker: Donnie Broxson, CEO, Acento
Matt Streit, Senior Vice President, Brand Advocacy & Public Affairs, Edelman
Brands in the energy industry are facing increasing opposition as conversations around environmental responsibility, social issues and corporate distrust have become commonplace. How do brands that are trying to do the right thing face this adversity head on, build trust with their customers, protect and improve their reputations and drive their own narrative? In this engaging panel discussion, you’ll hear from experts inside and beyond the energy sector on how to:
• Cultivate true connections with customers built on trust, to foster loyalty and advocacy
• Demonstrate that your company’s best interests align with your customers’ values
• Reframe the conversation by reinforcing your brand’s own positive story
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Why Being an Employer of Choice Matters
Speakers: Bobbi Schroeppel, VP, Customer Care, Communication, Human Resources, NorthWestern Energy
David Daer, Manager, Strategic Sourcing, Salt River Project
Attracting and retaining the best talent is a product of your brand, and your brand is a product of your employees. You want employees to be company ambassadors. Glean from partners the approaches they have taken to achieve a dynamic workforce with success in recruitment and retention.
2:30 PM – 3:30 PM
Looking Outside of the Utility Industry to Inspire Your Brand
Speaker: Scott Bedbury, CEO, Brandstream
Scott will speak to the challenges in building trust in a disinformation age, offering up several principles from his forthcoming book which will be published this fall. You will learn how to embrace rather than fear transparency, how to become a master storyteller heard above three billion others, and why tomorrow’s leaders will need to live and lead with empathy to win hearts and minds in a distrusting world.