Illustration for a webinar about the power of personalized video for utility companies

Webinar: The Power of Personalized Videos

Connecting with utility customers is no longer just about sending monthly bills. Customers expect to receive relevant messages and personalized recommendations from companies they interact with, including their utility. That means sharing information that will resonate with them, whether that’s to help them save money or make their homes more comfortable.

Questline Digital’s recent webinar, “The Power of Personalized Videos,” shared expert insights from Jared Brandon, Director of Innovation for Harris Computer, about what personalized videos are and why they matter. Melissa Martin, Utility Operations Manager at Fort Pierce Utilities Authority (FPUA), and William Gray, Billing Supervisor at FPUA, shared a first-hand case study of their experience implementing personalized videos in their customer engagement strategy.

What are Personalized Videos?

Personalized videos are an innovative form of digital engagement that can reach across every touchpoint of the customer journey — including new customer onboarding, monthly revenue collection, targeted program promotions and more.

“Each message and call-to-action is automatically tailored to each viewer, based on their preferences, behaviors or past interactions,” Brandon said. “They communicate what’s important, to whom and when.”

Brandon also explained that personalized videos are inclusive, supporting multilingual narration, closed captions and text transcripts — anything that helps make the video accessible to consumers. They are also dynamic, reflecting the demographics of the audience and tailoring to a customers’ unique wants, interests and needs.

Why Do Personalized Videos Matter for Utilities?

Brandon continued by discussing the value and benefits of personalized videos. He explained, “Two thirds of people learn best with visual aids. If a picture is worth a thousand words, imagine how much more effective a video is at communicating a message.”

Content that is personalized to a consumer is more likely to resonate with them. In fact, 71% of consumers expect companies to deliver personalized interactions, and 76% get frustrated when this doesn’t happen.

“Because every customer is unique, generic approaches to customer engagement can lead to messages being ignored, ending up in junk mail or causing customers to tune out or unsubscribe,” Brandon said.

Videos can cut through the clutter in a consumers’ inbox, helping your utility’s messages stand out.

Fort Pierce Utilities Authority Finds Success with Personalized Videos

Martin and Gray shared valuable insights from their first-hand experience with personalized videos. They shared what worked for them at FPUA, what they learned and helpful tips and advice.

Before implementing personalized videos, FPUA lacked an efficient outreach strategy and struggled to engage its customers. Martin and Gray explained that FPUA had goals of increasing paperless billing, IVR, online payments and autopay, but didn’t have a clear path on how to get there. The utility tried multiple initiatives to engage customers, but struggled to find success, prompting them to reassess their approach.

FPUA’s CIS partner, Harris Computer, introduced personalized videos as a customer engagement tool. FPUA’s team saw this innovative tactic as an opportunity to enhance communication and began implementation immediately.

Results for FPUA’s personalized videos

After an intensive process of testing to ensure a successful launch, FPUA launched its personalized videos in September 2023. Since going live, the utility has seen overwhelmingly positive results. “Right from the start, we witnessed a significant uptick in portal registrations, paperless signups and autopay, and it was precisely the goals that we aimed for from a key performance indicator (KPI) standpoint,” said Martin.

Customers were not only clicking on the videos but staying engaged throughout the message. Martin shared that the videos have consistently performed well with a watch-through rate of 70%.

Each video also provided additional information for customers through call-to-action (CTA) buttons. Martin said, “The call-to-action links at the end of the video are especially vital. They provide customers with seamless opportunities to sign up for these fantastic programs right at their fingertips and their convenience.”

The personalized videos directly boosted customer satisfaction. FPUA found that customers were genuinely excited about their personalized videos and shared their positive experiences. “The biggest surprise for us was the enthusiasm and warm reception to the billing videos from our customers,” said Martin. “They commended us for introducing such an innovative and personal approach.”

Personalized videos helped FPUA find success utility-wide. “We’ve been able to reach levels of satisfaction that we’d been missing for years,” said Martin.

Key Steps to Implementing Personalized Videos

Implementing personalized videos requires a well-thought-out strategy and it can often be difficult for utilities to know where to start. Through their learned experiences at FPUA, Grey shared guidance on the key steps to implementing personalized videos for utilities:

  1. Define your utility’s goals and objectives
  2. Ensure the data you have is complete and accurate
  3. Identify your target audience
  4. Gather the appropriate data
  5. Select your video templates and topics
  6. Write and edit the video scripts
  7. Test the videos thoroughly
  8. Deploy the videos to customers
  9. Measure and learn from the results

Before implementing personalized videos at your utility, consider these takeaways from our expert speakers.

Complement your existing offerings: Personalized videos are a highly effective way to enhance your utility’s existing outreach efforts. Brandon suggested that if your utility sends out a welcome series or bill notifications, send those messages through personalized videos to further engage and resonate with customers. “Use videos as a way to complement what you’re already doing and piggyback on those channels you’re already using,” he said.

Understand your customer: Your utility’s personalized videos should convey need-to-know information and answer your customers’ questions. Martin shared that FPUA made personalized videos with their customers in mind. As a result, the utility saw a reduction in the number of calls and emails asking for answers to commonly asked questions because customers were getting the information they needed from their videos.

Determine key performance indicators: Establishing relevant KPIs allows for the measurement of how effective your utility’s personalized videos are. It will clarify what success looks like, and allow your utility to optimize for improved performance as your personalized video program grows over time.

Personalized videos can provide highly relevant and personal content that speaks to each customer’s interests and needs. Unlike generic mass communications, personalized videos take a targeted approach, delivering highly relevant messages that capture customers’ attention.

“We are so excited to continue utilizing personalized videos,” Martin said. “It will improve our disconnection rates and satisfy customers.”

Learn how Questline Digital can help your utility build strong digital relationships through personalized videos.