Utility Industry Market Research
GreatBlue conducts comprehensive research and gains valuable insights for electric, gas, water, and cable utilities nationwide. Research studies gauge perceptions of cost versus value, preferred communication methods, awareness of advertising messages, and detailed demographics of your utility company’s customers. While understanding customer satisfaction for both residential and commercial customers is crucial for company success, understanding employee satisfaction and opinions is equally as important. Through customer satisfaction studies, GreatBlue helps utilities investigate ratings of overall products and services. By benchmarking employee satisfaction levels, organizations can improve company culture and maintain a productive, growth-oriented work environment. Our data-driven results provide utilities with a strategic roadmap for future success with customers, employees, and revenue.
Actionable Data Points
- Are customers satisfied with the products and/or services your company provides? Customer satisfaction surveys help utility companies understand how customers feel the organization is performing, perceptions of products/services costs, and opinions on the implementation of new products/services.
- Do customers know about all the programs and/or services available to them? Perception and awareness studies gauge knowledge of available programs/services offered in relation to conservation, energy, conversion, and pricing.
- Are your employees content with working for your organization? Employee satisfaction studies aim to improve company culture and determine how to increase productivity throughout a specific department or company-wide.
- Specific to gas utilities, GreatBlue offers the “Pipeline Safety Program” (PSP) to assist in evaluating current safety practices as well as perception, awareness, and knowledge of issues concerning gas safety. This PSP was created to measure the success of the federally-mandated efforts provided in the American Petroleum Act Recommended Practice 1162 and includes detailed audit support for regulators.
- Proactive in its approach toward customer satisfaction and gaining market share, a Connecticut-based electric and gas utility works with GreatBlue to conduct an annual customer satisfaction study. To gain a comprehensive evaluation of progress, this study is paired with a myriad of unique research projects, ranging from Time-of-Use studies to a Smart Meter Pilot Program, which boasted more than 950 participants.
- Thinking of What’s Next for its customers, this utility also conducted a Solar Market Research Study, asking residents their opinions and perceptions of solar energy to gauge interest in a solar panel lease program. The study identified customer insights on various sources of energy, knowledge of renewable energy, beliefs and opinions regarding renewable and solar energy, and awareness of the utilities’ involvement in renewable energy.
- In preparation for a PSP study for a regional gas association that included a sample of over 3,500 residents, 821 public officials, 817 Emergency Management Services, and 818 excavators, GreatBlue worked collaboratively with association officials to design the survey instruments and focus group guidebook to ensure all necessary areas of investigation were included. The association was then able to gauge awareness of concerns over pipeline safety as well as knowledge and understanding of pipeline leaks. Results have been used for program adjustments, advertising, and marketing initiatives. They also satisfy regulatory requirements in service territories managed by 32 different utilities from Maine to Pennsylvania.
- A water utility in Connecticut has worked with GreatBlue for more than 20 years to complete its semi-annual customer satisfaction, employee satisfaction, and public opinion leader studies. One specific result is a nearly 30% increase in customer satisfaction.
GreatBlue’s Utility Partners
Hometown Connections and GreatBlue Research partner to deliver actionable customer intelligence. The firms combine Hometown’s deep knowledge of public power utility management with the research design, analysis, and reporting expertise of GreatBlue. Together, the firms are closely integrating market customer & employee research with Hometown’s strategic planning, facilitation, organization assessment and other consulting services.
Additionally, GreatBlue is the preferred research partner of the American Public Power Association (APPA). These partnerships help Hometown Connections and APPA members identify and support the needs of public power communities through reliable data collection and market research.