For utilities, perfecting the welcome message is key to building stronger digital customer relationships. Utility welcome messages are arguably the most important customer touchpoint, setting the stage for future communications and laying the foundation for long-term engagement.

Companies in every industry are strategic about welcoming new customers, whether it’s a food delivery service like Hello Fresh or a vacation rental site like Airbnb. Just like these companies, utilities need to onboard customers immediately upon starting service. 

“Whether you become a bank customer or a member of a retail loyalty program, that company is communicating with you at the beginning stages,” says Susan Kownacki, Vice President of Account Services with Questline Digital. “If you don’t have a good relationship at the start, that relationship isn’t going to last very long.”

New Customer Welcome Emails Have an Immediate Impact

Customers are most receptive to utility outreach at the very beginning of service. According to Questline Digital’s 2023 Benchmarks Report, utility welcome messages reach nearly 71% of all residential customers and over 54% of SMB customers, respectively.  

These highly effective messages contain valuable information that customers need to know for a smooth onboarding experience, including My Account setup, billing and payment options, outage resources, safety and conservation education, and program information.

“Use a strategic welcome campaign as a way to connect with your customers at the very beginning of service, since this is when they are most receptive to outreach,” says Maureen Huss, Group Accounts Director at Questline Digital. “Doing so is the first step in building a trusted relationship.”

In today’s landscape of hyper-personalization, consumers expect relevant communications from their utility, just like they do from a streaming service, online retailer or fitness app. New customer welcome emails should be tailored to segmented groups of customers, whether residential customers, business customers or those who have recently moved within the service territory.

For example, residential customers may be interested in home efficiency or conservation programs, while business customers need to know what to do during an outage or power quality issue.

Utility welcome messages should include the following:

  • Welcome message to new or moving customers
  • Billing and payment options
  • DIY tips, energy-saving or water conservation resources
  • Outage and storm safety resources

Each utility welcome message should educate customers on various programs and services, answer commonly asked questions, provide available resources and prompt customers to take action, such as enrolling in paperless billing or autopay, signing up for outage text alerts or setting up their My Account.

“There is an art and science to a welcome campaign,” Kownacki says. “The content, the timing, the cadence — everything mirrors the new customer experience. Each email is an opportunity to introduce new and moving customers to their utility’s offerings and gather data on what customers care about.”

New customer welcome emails are also vital for future customer engagement. According to Questline Digital benchmarks data, customers who open at least one welcome message are more likely to engage with future utility email communications. In fact, customers who have opened at least one welcome message are 30% more likely to engage with a program promotion email.  

Additionally, a strategic utility welcome message can help utilities improve future communications by better understanding customer preferences. For example, if a customer clicks on links to your electric vehicle resources, you can send them subsequent communications about EV incentives and rebate programs.

How to Welcome New Residential Customers

For residential customers, it’s important for utilities to show appreciation and welcome them to the community. This goes a long way toward showing the human side of a utility and building long-term customer satisfaction.

After the initial welcome, utility welcome messages should focus on what customers care about most at the start of service: creating an account and establishing their preferred billing and payment methods.

New customer welcome emails should also showcase your utility as a trusted resource and expert. This is where residential customers benefit from energy efficiency tips, water conservation advice, helpful outage resources and programs to save on their bills.

“A welcome series is necessary to meet utility customers where they are in the digital space,” Kownacki says. “It’s about managing the relationship with customers through well-timed engagement upfront and then continuing that relationship with email newsletters, content marketing and other best practices to build long-term customer satisfaction.”

Example of an email message welcoming new utility customers

In this welcome email from Con Edison, the utility makes it easy for customers to know exactly what is being asked of them: to set up their My Account. Utility welcome messages should be clear, concise and easy to understand. The use of video also improves customer engagement with the message and provides more detailed information on how to make the most of My Account.

“Video is really good at simplifying topics or concepts that are easier to show than describe,” says Matt Irving, Questline Digital’s Creative Director of Video Content.

In their second welcome email, Rockland Electric Company in New Jersey encourages residential customers to sign up for outage text alerts and download the mobile app. The headline, “We’ll Help You Weather the Storm!” lets customers know that their utility is there for them.

Example of email message welcoming new utility customers

This utility welcome message also serves another purpose — better understanding what customers are interested in communicating via mobile device as well as which customers have Apple versus Google devices. With these two important pieces of information, Rockland Electric Company can enhance future communications with customers.  

Welcome Emails for New Business Customers

Welcoming business customers requires a unique approach, as these busy customers are inundated with everyday priorities. Utility welcome messages to business customers must take place every time a workplace transition occurs. As a result, continuity can be a challenge for key account managers.

“I think sometimes electric service can be a secondhand thought for businesses. It’s not a priority as long as their lights are on,” says Chad Brousseau, Business Accounts Manager at Cass County Electric Cooperative. “Businesses often don’t think of us until there is a power interruption or other issue. That’s why it’s important to build those trusted relationships and let them know how we can be of service.”

Each new customer welcome email should center around a specific topic that business customers need to know, such as billing and payment resources, My Account enrollment, outage resources and energy efficiency programs. “This proactive outreach provides business customers with answers to the questions that they have yet to ask,” Huss explains.

Welcome messages for business customers should include:

  • Welcome message and how to set up My Account
  • Explanation of billing and payment options
  • Prompts to sign up for newsletters and/or programs
  • Resources to help businesses save energy and water

The initial welcome messages should encourage My Account enrollment and ensure businesses are set up with their preferred billing and payment option. Each utility welcome message should provide value to business customers and connect them with all the resources they need to successfully set up their utility service.

This is also an opportunity to uncover segmentation data, like industry and interests, to shape future business customer experiences.  

“Business customers are extremely busy, and they don’t want to waste time with communications they don’t see as relevant to their operations,” says Brian Lindamood, Questline Digital’s Vice President of Marketing and Content Strategy. “By collecting data and listening to preferences during a welcome campaign, you can tailor future interactions to meet each customer’s specific needs. It’s the best way to position your utility as a helpful resource that supports business customers with information that’s relevant to them.”

Building Connections with Utility Welcome Messages

New customer welcome emails are an essential touchpoint, helping to begin the customer relationship and set the stage for future communications. With the right welcome strategy, your utility can go a long way to building strong digital relationships and becoming a trusted resource for all of your customers.

Learn how Questline Digital’s Welcome Series solution can help your utility build strong relationships with new customers.

Email marketing isn’t just a buzzword that industry folks throw around. It’s one of the most valuable tools in a marketer’s toolbox to connect with customers. The email marketing stats collected by HubSpot speak for themselves:

  • There are 4 billion daily email users
  • 73% of millennials prefer communications from businesses to come via email
  • 59% of respondents say marketing emails influence their purchasing decisions

Even in the age of TikTok and Instagram, email still has a stronghold in the industry to reach and interact with customers. Ian Brodie, author of “Email Persuasion,” even noted, “I’ve made every classic mistake with email. One of my most costly mistakes was not starting with email soon enough.”

Chart showing email statistics to avoid email marketing mistakes

Starting with email isn’t typically the issue for energy utilities. However, there are many other common email marketing mistakes that you could be making. Read on to discover five of the worst email marketing mistakes — and how to avoid them.

1. Not Welcoming New Customers

Customers don’t just want welcome emails from brands — they expect them. Although energy utility customers often don’t get to choose their energy provider, welcoming them to your utility still makes a positive first impression. A simple “hello” can make a significant impact on a customer’s journey.

We encourage energy utilities to not just send one welcome email, but a welcome series of three or four messages to start engagement off strong with new or moving customers. According to our 2022 Energy Utility Benchmarks Report, open rates for welcome messages reached 60% in one year.

When customers sign up for service, your utility is fresh in their minds. Use this timing to your advantage to:

  • Introduce your energy utility
  • Encourage My Account signups
  • Share your latest promotions or rebates
  • Promote paperless billing
  • Provide energy efficiency resources
  • Highlight community efforts

2. Not Setting Clear Expectations

There’s nothing worse than subscribing to what you think is a weekly email list and receiving daily emails instead. This is a surefire way to make customers lose interest and trust in your utility. The cadence and content of your emails need to meet customer expectations.

Tell them at the beginning of your digital relationship what they can expect from you:

  • How often you’ll communicate
  • What platforms will be used for communications
  • What types of content they can expect

Setting these expectations early on will encourage more engagement from your customers. Plus, they’ll be less likely to opt-out of communications. This also shows that your energy utility respects your customers’ inboxes. After all, email users typically receive an average of 126 emails per day.

It’s also important to communicate ahead of time what customers can expect if an outage occurs. Make sure customers know:

  • How to report an outage
  • How to check restoration times
  • How to contact your energy utility

Your utility should communicate early on how often and when customers should expect emails.

3. Not Prioritizing the Customer

Have you ever opened an email on your phone that was formatted so poorly that you couldn’t navigate the content? How about one filled with promotional information that wasn’t relevant to you? Of course you have. We all have. But that’s not how it should be.

Your utility needs to pay attention to your customers’ interests and needs if you expect to grow a relationship with them. Instead of putting all your utility’s effort into an email that will only look good in a web browser, focus on providing information in an easy-to-digest format. And while your communications can include selling points about a product or service, ensure that information is relevant to that audience.

According to Pew Research Center, more than 85% of Americans own smartphones and 15% of adults are “smartphone-only” internet users. If you’re not prioritizing mobile at this point, you’re making one of the most critical email marketing mistakes out there. Overdesigning and crowding your email content so much that it doesn’t load properly in smartphone windows — or look good in any format — can result in disinterested customers and lower engagement.

Then there is the problem of ensuring applicable content reaches the right audience. To ensure your utility is delivering the right information to the right people you should segment your lists into groups based on:

  • Residential vs. business customers
  • Renters vs. homeowners
  • Customer interests
  • Purchase history
  • Program participation

In fact, Campaign Monitor data shows that nearly 21% of consumers say they would unsubscribe from a brand’s email list if the content isn’t relevant to them.

One last tip: Don’t be a robot. Your customers would much rather feel like they’re reading a message from a person than a computer. because an energy utility is a corporation doesn’t mean your messages can’t have a personality. Find out what makes sense for your utility and show the human side of your organization.

4. No Clear CTA

We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: Make sure your communications have a clear call-to-action (CTA).

We’ve all heard the anecdote — if a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound? Well, if an email is delivered without an effective CTA, did it make an impact?

That answer is simple: No.

The copy in your email could be the greatest writing of our generation, selling benefit after benefit to customers and telling them exactly what they want to hear. But it makes no difference if you don’t tell customers what you want them to do.

  • Do you want them to learn more?
  • Should they reach out with questions?
  • Are you directing them to make a purchase at your marketplace?
  • Can they sign up for a program?
  • Do you want them to follow your utility on social media?

Emails should serve a purpose. Answer customers’ questions before they have them, help them take action, and make sure your CTA is clear and enticing and points to the outcome you hope to drive. Ashley Guttuso, chief strategy officer at Simple Focus Software, made an excellent point about email marketing on LinkedIn. She said, “Don’t be an email tease.”

Emails create too many hoops for customers to jump through to take action, she explained — from making them open the email, read the email, click a CTA, visit a landing page, click another CTA on the landing page, and on and on. It’s a tiring process.

That’s why you need to tell customers what you want them to do and make it easy for them to do so.

“You can even use two different CTAs in the email: a button that says, ‘Get Started’ and a text link that reads ‘Learn More’ that anchor links to the second section of the landing page [benefits] to deliver the experience they’ve selected,” Guttuso added.

Chart listing the ways to avoid email marketing mistakes with CTA best practices

Here are a few simple tips when crafting your CTA:

  • Make it about the reader by utilizing “my” terminology, like “Update My Outage Alerts”
  • Make the CTA stand out visually from the rest of the copy
  • Keep the verbiage short but actionable

5. Ignoring your Sender’s Reputation

Regardless of how pure your intentions are with your communications, spam filters could still determine that your emails should be sent to the junk folder or blocked from customer inboxes altogether. If this isn’t something your energy utility has kept an eye on before, you could have made some of these common mistakes:

  • Using stereotypical spam words often
  • Sending emails to invalid addresses
  • Receiving low or negative customer engagement with your content

These mistakes can cause your emails to bounce and recipients to unsubscribe. The more frequently this happens, the worse your sender reputation becomes. And, you guessed it: A poor reputation further affects the deliverability of your future emails.

If you’ve made any of the above errors in the past, your sender’s reputation could already be damaged. Luckily, you can remedy this email marketing mistake and improve deliverability rates by:

  • Allowing customers to select what communications they receive
  • Use welcome emails to set expectations
  • Provide excellent, engaging content
  • Deploy emails on a regular schedule
  • Check lists for misspelled addresses
  • Remove inactive subscribers

Fixing past mistakes may take some time, but it will be worth it in the end. You’ll create more engaging email campaigns and build stronger digital customer relationships.

Learn From Others’ Email Marketing Mistakes

Mistakes happen. It’s what makes us human. But these email marketing mistakes don’t have to hinder your energy utility’s relationship with your customers. Learn from others and try to avoid making these common email marketing mistakes. Your customer engagement and satisfaction will thank you.

The experts at Questline Digital can help you avoid common email marketing mistakes and boost customer engagement.

Don’t sleep on welcome emails. They are one of the most effective forms of marketing automation you can set up. Here are a few reasons why…

  • The average open rate for welcome emails is 60.3%, which makes them 114% more attention-grabbing than standard emails.
  • Compared to regular email marketing, welcome emails make 320% more revenue on average.

When a customer signs up for service, they subconsciously seek acknowledgment. They want you to greet them upon their arrival. Remember the saying, “Great hosts greet their guests” and apply the mentality to your emails.

But alas, no one will open your message unless your subject line inspires them to. Here’s how to craft a compelling welcome email subject line that encourages opens.

3 Rules for Writing Great Welcome Series Subject Lines

Don’t overthink your welcome email subject lines. Straight-forward messages perform best. Follow these basic rules and you’re sure to catch attention.

  1. Use a simple hello, hi or howdy. Make it obvious what your message is all about. Your customers just signed up for utility services and are expecting to receive onboarding information. Make them feel welcomed.
  2. Offer a discount or immediate value. Give customers a specific reason to open your email. Include rebates, incentives or other benefits that customers can take advantage of right away. Make your value apparent.
  3. Suggest next steps. Include instructions, a CTA or action verbs to spell out what you want customers to do with the information you’re sending. Make it so they can’t miss the important stuff (like billing).

Best Performing Welcome Email Subject Lines

Check out the top-performing welcome series subject lines, pulled from Questline Digital’s industry-wide marketing performance data. Each example follows the tips outlined above and successfully compels customers to act.

Subject LineOpen Rate
Explore your billing and payment options94.7%
The power is in your hands94.1%
Welcome to [Utility Name]94.0%
[Utility Name] is here to help you93.3%
Billing and payment options – made easy91.7%
Convenient billing options for your business90.1%
Welcome to the [Utility Name] family!87.9%
Let us help you manage your energy costs85.7%
Account and billing options you need to know85.3%
3 outage resources you need to know about84.2%

What to Include in Your Welcome Series

An effective welcome series includes three to five emails. That’s why you’ll need multiple welcome email subject lines within your onboarding series. Lucky for you, that means you can test which topics and words garner the most attention.

Whichever way you choose to organize your welcome information, common topics include:

  • My Account set up
  • Billing options
  • Available discounts or rebates
  • Outage resources
  • Community involvement
  • Energy efficiency resources

Don’t make it overly complicated! Provide your customers with what they need and make it obvious what you’re offering or asking them to do. Remember, new customers want to hear from you. An effective welcome series should be the start of long-lasting — and highly satisfied — digital relationship with customers.

Learn more about Questline Digital’s proven solutions to build digital engagement with new utility customers.

No matter the brand, first impressions with new customers are everything. That’s why a great welcome message is essential in every industry, from retail to hospitality and everything in between. For the energy utility industry, an effective welcome email design has the power to increase customer engagement, drive program promotion conversions and build long-lasting satisfaction.

According to Questline Digital’s 2022 Energy Utility Benchmarks Report, 60.2% of Welcome Series emails were opened by customers in the past year — the highest engagement rate in Benchmarks history. Welcome Series also experienced a high CTR of 11.9%. A great welcome message sets the stage for successful digital customer relationships and provides a valuable introduction to your energy utility.

Welcome Email Design Best Practices

Welcome emails are the first digital interactions customers have with your energy utility. Typically, these communications are saved by customers and make a great point of reference. Your welcome email design should give customers exactly what they want and need. Set the precedent for the value they will receive by opening and reading the email.

“This is the introduction of your energy utility — that’s why it’s vital to think long-term,” says Joe Pifher, Questline Digital’s Creative Director. “Keep your branding as evergreen as possible. Once you have a good formula for the content in your Welcome Series, there’s really no reason to change it.”

According to Pifher, a great welcome message should incorporate these best practices:

  • Include more detailed information than a standard email.
  • Divide topics into sections for easy reading.
  • Use icons to help customers find topics at a glance.
  • Stay as true to your utility’s brand as possible.

“As with any communication, keep your email clean and easy to read,” Pifher explains. “Bucket topics together so they are easy to find when customers are skimming the content. I also suggest using icons to help with a quick search.”

Pifher also recommends these basic principles for welcome email design:

Think about accessibility: To ensure ADA compliance, add alt tags to all images. In addition to tagging, use a Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) checker to make sure fonts and color contrast are readable for vision-impaired customers.

Use live text: If your hero image includes a headline, live text makes this copy visible if a customer has their “images” turned off. With live text, these customers aren’t missing important information.

Be mobile-ready: Mobile-optimized welcome email design is essential today. In fact, more than 63% of residential customers read emails from their energy utility on smartphones.

Be aware of dark mode: Many customers prefer dark mode, which helps reduce visual strain. Multiple surveys show that over 80% of consumers use dark mode on one or more applications.

To give your energy utility some inspiration, check out these welcome email samples for new customers from a wide variety of industries.

Welcome Email Design #1: Thrive Market

Thrive Market, an e-commerce retailer offering natural and organic food, begins its welcome email with a short letter from the co-founder and CEO. The letter speaks to the brand’s focus on health and sustainable living, which resonates with its target audience of eco-friendly consumers.

The welcome email design provides customers with a quick snapshot of resources to begin their journey with the e-commerce site, including an FAQ section, helpful health tips and recipes, and how to shop their exclusive products. Thrive Market also highlights their company’s efforts to make a positive impact on the planet, such as becoming a 100% carbon-neutral company.

Example of welcome email design Thrive

Takeaway for energy utilities: Based on this welcome email sample for new customers, the first email in your Welcome Series is a good spot for a short letter from your energy utility’s president. In your welcome email design, you could also include a message from a lineworker, giving the email a neighborly feel. Similar to Thrive Market’s approach, consider sharing helpful energy efficiency tips and promote your marketplace.

Welcome Email Design #2: Airbnb

Airbnb’s welcome message makes it easy for new customers to understand how the vacation rental company’s service works while providing imagery of enticing destinations and travel inspiration.

This great welcome message outlines what a customer can expect when booking a stay with Airbnb, including host verification, secure payments and cancellation policies. It also provides links where customers can learn more about the company and visit the Help Center.

Example of welcome email design Airbnb

Takeaway for energy utilities: Incorporate Airbnb’s educational approach into your welcome email design by providing customers with clear and easy-to-understand information about your energy utility’s programs and services.

Make it as easy as possible for your customers to enroll in My Account, paperless billing, outage text alerts and other essential services. Also, be open about what customers can expect from your energy utility, such as transparency and quick response during outages.

Welcome Email Design #3: Apple TV+

Apple sends out a welcome message to new Apple TV+ subscribers. This welcome email sample for new customers provides a brief overview of the streaming service and shares popular movies and series to encourage subscribers to start streaming. The email also promotes the Apple TV app, which makes it easy for subscribers to watch their favorite shows from any mobile device. The simple welcome email design features concise messaging, which resonates with today’s on-the-go consumers.

Example of welcome email design Apple

Takeaway for energy utilities: Energy utilities benefit from a clean welcome email design and straightforward messaging. Copy should be short and sweet while providing customers with a relevant overview of your energy utility. Instead of including too much copy in one email, provide a short description and link to your website for more information.

We see success with an average of four emails per Welcome Series campaign. This approach allows your energy utility to deliver information in smaller, targeted pieces over time, rather than one overly long email. Like Apple, your energy utility also has the ability to share recommendations, such as popular products from your energy utility’s marketplace.

Welcome Email Design #4: Lush Fresh Handmade Cosmetics

In this welcome email sample for new customers, the beauty retailer Lush shares product recommendations, encouraging customers to shop online. The welcome message also explains how customers can interact with the brand through product tips and behind-the-scenes videos on social media. The welcome email design utilizes vibrant, colorful images that showcase the brand’s fun personality.

Example of welcome email design Lush

Takeaway for energy utilities: Energy utilities might not have as bold of an image as a beauty retailer like Lush, but that doesn’t mean you should shy away from showing off your brand personality. For a great welcome message, consider sharing what makes your energy utility a cornerstone of the community, such as philanthropic efforts, employee volunteerism and other involvement.

To capture attention in your welcome email design, take advantage of eye-catching imagery, such as photography of people that reflect your service area’s demographics. Your energy utility could also incorporate actual photos of your lineworkers restoring power or employees volunteering in the community.

Welcome Email Design #5: The Glenlivet

The Glenlivet, a Scotch whisky distillery, takes a personalized approach to its welcome message. The eye-catching welcome email design is casual and conversational in tone, with the bold headline, “Hey There, Whisky Lover.” Perhaps most unique, customers have the opportunity to “create their own adventure” by choosing how they take their whisky. This fun quiz-style email directs them to an alcoholic beverage that is best suited to them.

Example of welcome email design Glenlivet

Takeaway for energy utilities: Energy utilities can increase engagement in their Welcome Series by personalizing the content to residential or business customers. You can further customize your welcome email design with segmented content for new customers and existing customers who recently moved within your service area.

When promoting energy efficiency programs, consider two different messages for homeowners and renters. These audiences have distinct needs when it comes to energy efficiency. For example, homeowners are more likely to make bigger investments, such as installing ENERGY STAR appliances and taking advantage of whole-house energy assessments. In comparison, renters are inclined to make smaller improvements like smart plugs, water-saving showerheads and LED light bulbs.

Look to These Welcome Email Samples for New Customers

A great welcome message gives your customers a glimpse into your energy utility — what programs and services they need to know about, as well as what makes your company an integral part of the community. As you can see in the above examples, the sky is the limit when it comes to saying “hello” to new and moving customers. What matters is finding a way to connect through creativity, personalization, concise messaging and clean welcome email design.

Build strong customer relationships from day one with a Welcome Series from Questline Digital.

Sending a warm welcome message to customers goes a long way in establishing rapport and familiarizing your audience with your utility’s offerings. An effective welcome email tees up your audience for more inbox communications and lays the foundation for a positive customer experience.

When following welcome email best practices, your messages should do five things:

  1. Thank customers for joining
  2. Help customers get the most out of your offerings
  3. Invite engagement through calls to action
  4. Provide immediate value
  5. Set the tone for future email communications

At the start of their relationship with your energy utility, customers are more receptive to messages about your programs and services (think paperless billing and outage alerts). And once they graduate from a Welcome Series, they will be more engaged with subsequent communications — by a lot. Questline Digital’s Benchmarks data shows recipients of welcome emails are 30% to 50% more likely to open future emails compared to customers who don’t receive welcome emails from their energy utility.

Don’t miss your opportunity to communicate essential onboarding information and build strong digital customer relationships.

Quick Tips: 7 Welcome Email Best Practices

Follow these seven tips to accomplish customer engagement and onboarding goals with your energy utility’s welcome emails.

  1. Use a straightforward subject line.
  2. Keep messages succinct and focused on improving customer lives.
  3. Use pre-scheduled, automated emails to maximize engagement.
  4. Send the first email immediately upon service signup and trickle in additional details over the next 30 days.
  5. Include three to five emails in your Welcome Series.
  6. Employ segmentation.
  7. Regularly test and evaluate email content.

Use a straightforward subject line. Welcome emails are not the place to try click-bait subject lines. Instead, be transparent and straightforward. Try something simple like, “Thanks for letting us into your inbox! Now what?” or “Welcome to [utility name] — Let’s get started.”

Keep messages succinct and focused on improving customers’ lives. Make your messages short and use subheads, icons and bullets to make reading easy. Customers are busy and don’t have time for complex emails. Similarly, only include information that is imperative to customer success. Welcome emails should serve as scannable resource centers.

Use pre-scheduled, automated emails to maximize engagement. Makes things simple for yourself and build automated workflows for your welcome messages. You can build a single workflow that spreads out messages, sending them a few days apart. Or you could build multiple workflows, sending secondary emails based on actions taken (or not taken) in the first send.

Send the first email immediately upon service signup and trickle in additional details over the next 30 days. Send email number one immediately upon signup and schedule the rest to follow a planned cadence. Consumers assume either they did something wrong or your systems don’t work if they don’t get a welcome email right away.

Welcome Series with three to five emails perform best. With years of experience managing Welcome Series for utilities, Questline Digital data shows that sending too many or too few messages can equate to lost opportunities. The best-performing welcome email series templates include three to five emails.

Employ segmentation. Welcome email best practices include using segmentation to build multiple campaigns for different audiences. New customers, moving customers, small businesses and large businesses all need unique resources from their utility. Don’t disappoint customers with welcome resources that don’t address their specific requirements.

Regularly test and evaluate email contents. While automation allows you to technically “set it and forget it,” you should evaluate your welcome emails on a seasonal basis, or at least annually. Look to see if some topics receive more engagement than others, if CTAs are performing, and if the number of messages and cadence is successful.

Check out this mini case study from a fellow utility who whittled down their Welcome Series after evaluating the data. They dropped from six emails to five and reprioritized messages, ultimately improving engagement results.

Welcome Email Series Template for Energy Utilities

Every energy utility is different, but the content that often performs best in a Welcome Series campaign includes:

  • Introductory thank-you message. This is the most important message that receives the highest level of engagement. Keep it succinct and focused on improving customers’ lives.
  • Billing and digital channels. This message has the second-highest engagement rate. Introduce customers to your utility’s billing options and digital channels.
  • Outage resources. Inform customers of the variety of ways to receive outage updates and invite them to register for text notifications.
  • Community involvement. Use this message to focus on your energy utility’s community efforts and partnerships.
  • Safety or energy savings. Engage and educate customers on safety topics through videos, infographics or interactive quizzes. This message can also take a savings focus with promotions about energy efficiency rebates and programs.

Your utility may have different goals or messages to promote, but this flow of information — from thank you to must know to value-add — will help set up your customers for success.

Examples of Welcome Email Best Practices in Action

The best welcome email series follow a template. They always say “thank you” and help customers get the most out of company offerings. The following examples showcase welcome email best practices in action.

Nordstrom: This welcome message clearly illustrates the benefits of being a Nordy Club member and prompts customers to download a mobile app. Recipients feel taken care of and know what to expect going forward.

Example of welcome email best practices from Nordstrom

Amazon Prime: This welcome email has a clear CTA of “get started” along with secondary links to specific benefits. Amazon makes it clear they want me to finish building the customer’s profile in order to deliver the best customer experience.

Example of welcome email best practices from Amazon

Ahrefs: Using video to share a warm welcome message to customers helps to elevate your brand.This email also includes links to Ahrefs’ five main tools so customers can gain value right away.Subsequent emails include recaps and links to their most popular and helpful blog content.

Example of welcome email best practices from Ahrefs

Leverage Questline Digital’s welcome email templates to ace new customer engagement for your energy utility.