Video marketing in the water utilities? In a complex and strategic sector such as the water sector where the service to be offered concerns an absolutely vital resource, and in a market such as the Italian one which, albeit chaotically, is opening up to new opportunities, digitalization provides the power and flexibility of advanced communication tools.
Digital technologies can help companies operating in the water cycle both to achieve their goals related to community well-being and environmental sustainability and to improve their economic results. In facing these challenges, marketing claims a fundamental role: That of enhancing the value of different communication channels through the development and management of tailored formats in an attempt to reach increasingly informed and aware consumers.
In this sense, personalized videos are an extraordinary opportunity both to optimize business processes thanks to access to consumer data and to intercept the needs of users who are able to actively participate in the conversation with brands.
> EBOOK – Digitization and personalization in the water sector: New technologies at the service of business
Video marketing translates the main trends of the water utilities sector into concrete projects
The paradigm of marketing and corporate communication has changed, revolutionizing even sectors such as utilities and energy, which are structurally not very open to dialog with the customer. We have moved from a sort of one-way form of communication to open and plural discourse, with a view toward continuous improvement of the customer experience. This is now evidence that cannot be ignored: The customer experience becomes rich and powerful only if the conditions for effective interaction exist.
This explains why the customer experience is increasingly a digital customer experience. It is within this conceptual and technological horizon that Doxee moves, and it has long been committed to offering a series of interactive data-driven, personalized, and contextual services.
Doxee solutions – and specifically Doxee Pvideo®, which constitutes the central element of an innovative way of doing video marketing – are able to translate the trends shaping the water sector into concrete projects. This includes the progressive adoption of a fully entrepreneurial logic, to the no-longer-postponable commitment to environmental sustainability, and the recognition of the importance of the end consumer.
In particular, on the customer care side, something that is bringing enormous benefits is the integrated and widespread use of digitalization tools, including interactive videos, which enable ad hoc functions for the personalization of content and contributes to the success of document dematerialization processes.
Video marketing in the water utilities can greatly benefit from those developments in digitization that allow customers to gain autonomy in managing their users and ultimately contribute to the construction of a new conversational framework in which all parties involved can experience a true, more informed, and effective dialog.
Marketers’ trust in video increases exponentially as the results obtained on the main KPIs grow and, consequently, their use grows in turn. Video proves to be a decidedly effective media tool that is also capable of intercepting the preference of customers and transforming it into a narrative through images, and it’s also able to positively impact organizations’ ROI.
In 2020, video marketing proved to be a particularly intelligent choice that was indispensable for avoiding interruptions and slowdowns in the purchasing funnel and for keeping the relationship with consumers alive. As we’ll see, this is largely supported by numbers.
The state of video marketing: Some data
A recent study by Wyzowl on the performance of videos within corporate marketing plans defines video as a key asset, emphasizing the decisive contribution toward business continuity that they made during the crisis of 2020. Chosen with conviction by marketers, videos guarantee a higher return on investment than other tools, a strong impact on traffic, lead generation, sales, and the real understanding of the message by the audience. In fact, consumers continue to perceive and use video as an integral part of their journey with brands.
Wyzlow highlights that:
- Video is now used by 86% of companies (in 2020 the percentage was 85% and 61% in 2016);
- 93% of marketers incorporate video permanently into their plans, an increase of one percentage point over 2020;
- 87% of marketers recognize a positive ROI from the use of video. This figure is particularly significant when we consider that in 2015, only 33% of marketers made the same statement.
In recent years, there has been a high degree of awareness about the potential of video that has been accompanied by improved technical expertise regarding how to monitor and quantify results. In fact, 94% of marketers agree that video has helped increase users’ understanding of their product or service, and 43% reported that video has significantly reduced the number of support calls their company receives.
The majority of marketers surveyed also believe that video is an optimal investment for lead generation: 84% say so, up 1% from 2020.
If we then turn to a cost-benefit analysis on the sales side, nearly eight out of ten marketers believe video has a direct and positive impact on sales.
- 51% of marketers continue to incorporate video content into their ABM strategies, using it in a complementary way to other, more traditional marketing initiatives (NextRoll);
In conclusion, on the current state of video marketing we feel we can agree with Hubspot’s statement that video is currently the #1 form of media used in content strategies, surpassing blogs and infographics. Even in “difficult” markets such as utilities and the water sector specifically, video marketing, with its contribution to advanced profiling and differentiated communication, can help solve increasingly difficult challenges.
Personalized video for business: Four examples
Personalized videos are an evolving reality that can serve many different purposes. For example, they can celebrate the achievement of a goal or the positive results of an awareness campaign, or they can invent a game to suggest a Christmas gift that is sure to be appreciated.
Or, and this is the case of the last two case histories in this section, videos can capitalize on the informative richness of data coming from a variety of sources, such as the digital touchpoints designed for the customer user throughout his journey or the smart metering devices implemented by energy, gas, and water companies. And, they can make use of this wealth of information to refine their knowledge of the customer in order to provide him with services that are increasingly centered on his actual needs and saving him precious time, by simplifying payment procedures and providing immediate access to the general situation of users.
Finally, the last example moves the limits of personalized digital communication even further: it is a mini-site that is also a true platform, one that is flexible and that can be used immediately, and one that is able to guarantee tailored navigation paths through content designed specifically for that individual consumer.
Amnesty International Canada: The power of a personalized thank you
All too often, companies tend to focus only on what could perhaps be loosely defined as direct mail. Amnesty International Canada has decided to take a decidedly different tack. We wrote a post some time ago about how nonprofits are learning to harness the potential of digitization. Here, we want to focus on a different strength of content personalization: Amnesty has effectively focused on a direct “call-to-action” appeal to donors through a video that called each donor by name.
Nothing could be simpler – and more powerful – for building donor loyalty through a thank you that is all the more authentic because it is accompanied by the results achieved: the success of the organization’s initiatives in the video is credited entirely to the commitment and generosity of the donors (source: rocketium.com)
Iberia Airlines: Leveraging cookies for the perfect Christmas gift
During the 2016 holiday season, Iberia Airlines customers received several emails that asked everyone the same question: “If you could choose one destination for your vacation, what would it be and who would you go with?” If they decided to answer, customers were redirected to a microsite where they were invited to enter their answers and the email address of the person they wanted to travel with in a specific form.
Not long after, the preferred travel companion would receive an email containing a message that winked at the referring person’s dream vacation. To view the card, he simply had to click on a link. At that point, a dedicated page would open directly on his browser. In this way Iberia, put its advertising budget to good use: By using cookies (with the user’s permission) the person referred by its customer-traveler saw the banners on the web and got a suggestion for the perfect Christmas gift.
Doxee and IREN: Promoting New Downstream services with personalized videos
Iren is one of the most important and dynamic multi-utilities in Italy. It operates in the production and distribution of electricity, gas, and district heating services, and it is at the forefront in the proposal of add-ons – renamed “New Downstream” – such as the LED lights kit, the smart thermostat, and Clairy, an innovative air purifier that reduces domestic pollution. Iren, “a multi-utility that looks to the future,” adopts innovative means of communication, which allows it to operate under the banner of quality and attention to the needs of customers and citizens.
To promote its New Downstream services, Iren chose Doxee personalized videos with the goal of welcoming the customer, increasing confidence in the service purchased, and at the same time proposing new services in line with his interests.
The personalized video proposes content that is relevant to the user profile and all the useful information on how to improve energy consumption. It also contains a final mini-survey, which can be filled in within the video itself: By answering a few short questions, Iren will be able to know its customers better and personalize their dedicated offers even more.
Developing customer-centric strategies: The future of the water utilities is video marketing
Digitization has had a profound impact on the utility sector, transforming its industrial structure and the way it relates to customers. Operators of utility companies, and especially those involved in marketing in the water sector, are increasingly investing in smart technologies and innovating services to offer higher quality and sustainability.
In this context, video marketing can contribute to the development of customer-centric strategies. Thanks to its intrinsic narrative capacity, video is even more engaging than other forms of storytelling because it offers the brand endless possibilities to tell its story, through images and sound. Doxee provides water companies with the technologies necessary to develop a well-defined and differentiated image and to meet the needs of customers who demand more transparency and interaction.
In other words, what Doxee’s interactive experience can achieve is, above all, an important competitive advantage.
Discover how Iren has innovated its communication to bring increased quality and attention to the needs of customers and citizens