Today’s consumers are active participants — they want to engage with their energy utility. That’s why savvy marketers are turning to video games, mobile apps and other interactive content to create one-of-a-kind experiences. Here are some great content marketing ideas that utilities can learn from and apply to their own engagement strategies.
Interactive content has the ability to engage customers in ways beyond what is possible in traditional marketing. Ever the innovator, Nike is using this technology to redefine their customer experience. Harnessing the power of augmented reality (AR), Nike is giving loyal fans the opportunity to purchase coveted limited-edition sneakers through their mobile app, SNKRS. The SNKRS Stash game gives customers exclusive access to product releases through a Pokemon Go-inspired journey. Mobile app users get hints to meet in certain locations around their city, and once they reach the virtual Stash Spot, they “unlock” the shoe on the app.
Nike is also bringing AR to select retail stores overseas. In certain markets, customers who test out Nike’s running shoes become characters in a virtual world called Reactland. Game-playing elements transform an ordinary experience into an exciting adventure.
Many industries, including the energy utility space, face challenges with low customer engagement. Video games offer customers an experience beyond traditional interactions and inspires them to take action.
In a bold move for the banking industry, the European Central Bank introduced a Tetris-style online game to educate customers about a new 10 euro note. Once customers completed a level, they learned a different fact about the new note’s security. To encourage customers to play all four levels, the top 20 scorers received a VIP banknote signed by the bank president.
To encourage commuters to use public transportation during off-peak hours, the Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) developed a rewards program. BART Perks was created with the intent to reduce rush-hour congestion by encouraging commuters to use public transportation during off-peak hours. Like a Fitbit tracks fitness activity, this mobile app rewards commuters for entering a train station during designated bonus hours (for example 6:30 to 7:30 a.m.). Nearly 18,000 commuters signed up during the program’s six-month run, and BART Perks was deemed successful with 10% of commuters changing their travel times.
Games at play
Questline’s recent work includes a retro “whack-a-mole”-style game to help customers better understand Distribution Automation Circuit Reconfiguration. We also created an interactive picture hunt game to engage customers in energy utility communications.
Questline also incorporated a game into our own tradeshow marketing strategy to drive traffic to our conference booth. The online trivia game features a sampling of questions about ’80s pop culture (with an energy spin, of course). Response to the game has been extremely positive, drawing attention and lots of questions about the power of interactive content.