Gartner Research

Social Media Provides Utilities a New Channel for Customer Engagement

Published: 19 March 2012

ID: G00231025

Analyst(s): Zarko Sumic , Chet Geschickter

Summary

Utilities use social media to improve consumer-facing business processes. But the social media environment for utilities is plagued by activists that oppose key industry initiatives, and customer adoption of utility social properties is low. Solidifying social CRM strategy will improve results.

Table Of Contents
  • Impacts

Analysis

  • Impact: Utilities can use social media to improve traditional customer interaction channels; however, customer adoption of utility social CRM is low, limiting its benefits
  • Impact: Traditional call centers can be quickly overwhelmed during power outages; utilities can use social CRM to streamline and improve customer communications
  • Impact: Advances in social CRM create opportunities for competitive-market power retailers to demonstrate their offering differentiation, and to acquire and retain customers
  • Impact: Some utilities pursuing strategic initiatives, such as smart grid, mergers or divestitures, are being outflanked by consumer activists that are using social media to rally opposition

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