Profile: Sir Charlie Mayfield

John Lewis Partnership Chairman

SSE in CRM march to restore 'brand tempo' and avoid message overload

SSE is developing a blueprint to create more seamless interactions between shopper data, media consumption and customer attitudes after admitting its previous “patchwork” CRM strategy has left it trailing rivals.

SSE-Logo-2013_460

SSE is overhauling its CRM strategy to get closer to customers.

The energy firm is looking to map the customer journey across all its touchpoints to try and create more personalised experiences for homeowners using its services. It says customers will be able to access details about their bills, conduct meter readings and access other services from multiple devices in the future.   

Jenny Ashmore, SSE’s recently appointed CMO, told Marketing Week the CRM overhaul reflects how “serious” the brand is about being customer-data driven, even more so now it no longer makes unsolicited calls to potential customers. The company ended the practice earlier this month and said it was focused on “ensuring that existing customers get the best possible products, deals and customer service”.

Ashmore adds: “We’re no longer cold calling and I think that shows we really want to improve the level of service for our customers. What we’re working on now is how to tie together all the different parts of the customer journey and make them work as one. It’s about looking at how we get the right tempo between those channels and build more relevant and targeted customer relationships.”

SSE is looking for a single agency to shape the strategy after previously relying on several creative shops and its own in-house team to work on different areas of the customer journey. The utilities firm says the approach had created a fragmented experience for consumers. It is in the process of developing a new marketing strategy for next year that will look to position the SSE brand around its customer charter, which launched earlier this year.

The changes reflect wider shifts across the energy sector from the big six companies to be more customer-driven after years of employing price-based marketing strategies. Npower, the smallest of the country’s top energy firms, is restructuring its marketing team around data and digital  disciplines to create more insight-driven brand building initiatives, while E.on is using customer research to develop a set of brand promises.

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