Newsletters: Building Relationships and Increasing Engagement with CCA Customers
Community Choice Aggregator (CCA) staff wear many hats while juggling all of the behind-the-scenes responsibilities needed to keep their organizations running smoothly. With so many priorities competing for attention, it can be easy to forget that customer communications should be right at the top of the list.
One of the biggest strengths CCAs have is their ability to build meaningful connections with their local community in a way that larger, far-off privately owned utilities can’t hope to replicate. Regular e-newsletters, whether monthly or quarterly, can help CCAs keep a consistent line of communication open and provide residents with relevant information pertinent to their specific community, at a low cost.
Why are newsletters important?
Newsletters are a great way for CCAs to connect with their communities and keep them engaged with the most timely and important information. There are limited opportunities for CCAs to communicate directly with their customers, so each newsletter must be filled with the latest CCA news and open the door for customers to reach back out and make themselves heard.
For many customers, CCAs can be something of an unknown entity. Therefore, using newsletters can help customers become more acquainted with their CCA and the benefits it provides. Building familiarity over time will lead to increased trust and more meaningful customer engagement.
Newsletters are also a chance to build credibility through transparency. As public, not-for-profit organizations, CCAs are uniquely positioned to provide customers with as much information as possible, unlike some privately owned utilities. Reassuring the community that the CCA has their best interest at heart will provide long-term benefits as the program grows. Overall, the trust built up over time will lead to customer retention, helping your CCA thrive within the community.
What should newsletters include?
First and foremost, newsletters are a perfect way to highlight all of the programs your CCA is implementing in the community. Articles can focus on recent accomplishments, upcoming initiatives, community events and more. If there are any ongoing partnership programs in place to help customers save energy and money, this is a great place to promote them.
Newsletters are also a great avenue to educate customers about CCAs. Remember, CCAs are complicated: many people don’t know what CCAs are, much less what they do, the benefits they can provide or their mission. It’s important to ensure customers have the opportunity to learn exactly what the CCA’s role is in their community. The more digestible the content is, the easier it will be for the audience to grasp the benefits CCAs bring, and therefore, the more likely they are to remain in and become an advocate for the program.
Finally, newsletters can include simple, practical tips and tricks to help customers adjust their daily lives and create a cleaner, greener future. It takes the whole community to build a bright future, and sharing energy efficiency tips is another great way to educate the audience about easy ways they can save energy and money on the electricity bill.
Newsletters are a powerful tool for CCAs to build trust with their community, educating customers about exciting programs, ways to save energy and how to build a sustainable future for generations to come.
Tripepi Smith’s CCA CommuniCAtor Insights series examines aspects of and best practices for communicating the value and impact of CCAs to ensure community messaging is reaching and engaging key audiences to promote their involvement.
For more #AlwaysBeLearning insights from Tripepi Smith: