It’s time we give our customers what they want, autonomy over their money, communication, and the way they consume information and data. Most people are now prosumers and they expect more say in the way they pay bills and interact with companies. Now more than ever, customers want a more intimate experience with the brands and businesses they interact with, and it’s important that you are meeting these growing needs. 

Ultimately, your customer experience will need to shift with the expectations of growing digital trends and accessibility. But let’s dive more into what that means.

What Is A Prosumer?

There are a few definitions of a prosumer, but the original definition was coined by Alvin Toffler to refer to the blend of both a consumer and producer. This term was created to show that ultimately, people will want to be more involved with the products and services they are consuming and shift into more actively being a part of the development process. 

An easy way to think of this concept is the idea that customers want to have a more hands-on experience with the way they interact with and use the services of companies. They are both users and creators. With this growing need, it is more important than ever to give your customers access to the tools and hands-on interactions they need to feel like they are taking an active role in their consumption habits. 

 

How To Create A Customer Experience For The Prosumer 

Take a minute to audit your own business. Do you offer options for your customers to interact with you? Are you offering multiple payment options? Do you have a customized portal or user interface that allows your customers to easily access the information they need? Before, customers might have preferred to call your business for information, but we are now moving into a more independent interaction expectation, and it’s important that your business can keep up with these changes. 

Before you panic, just know that these changes can be easy to make and will ultimately streamline your business and the way you interact with your customers. 

 

Upgrade Your Payment Systems

If you can’t remember the last time you got a paper bill in the mail you probably shouldn’t be sending them either. Or rather, you should be giving your customers different options. Having the ability to send paper statements or electronic statements based on your customer’s preferences will give them power over their consumption and payment habits. It is also ideal to accept multiple payment methods like Apple Pay, Google Pay, Crypto, and more. This meets your customers where they are and gives them more preferences to pick from. With Utili for example we offer one-touch payments and multiple payment options to ensure your customers are met where they are.

 

Upgrade Your Communication Platform For The Prosumer

Prosumers also want to be informed consumers, so offering multiple ways to communicate with them is essential to their experience. Having real-time updates, easy-to-digest updates, and easy access to data will keep your customers happy and engaged with your business. How are you currently sharing information? Is it in an email? Or do you send a paper usage statement? Having a user dashboard that presents this information in an easy-to-use way will help your customers get the information they need when they need it. This can also apply to outage updates or easy access to other important information. Ultimately a customized communication experience with multiple options will create happier customers. 

 

Upgrade The Way You Collect Feedback

How frequently are you communicating with your customer and getting their feedback? Sure, an email survey can work but they are less likely to fill that out without some type of incentive. Having multiple ways for your customers to give feedback and be involved in their services will help build lasting loyalty to your brand.

 Surveys, instant notifications, and even hosting surveys in your user dashboard are great ways to hear from your customers and show them that you truly value their feedback and opinions. And ultimately, since they are on the other side of your business, they might offer some valuable ideas that can improve the way you do business. You can also get more connected with your customers on social, which is a great way to build more word-of-mouth marketing and provide other outlets for your customers to share their thoughts and feel more connected to your brand, but more on that later. 

 

Get Comfortable With Real-Time Updates 

No one wants to wait a month for their usage details, so providing real-time updates will help empower your customers to be prosumers who are informed and aware of their actions and usage. Knowing their data in real-time can help create more intentional usage and again, helps create a better user experience. Think about it this way, we are all used to instant gratification. You can order groceries from your phone, open a bank account, and shop to your heart’s content without ever leaving the couch. This has become the new benchmark for the user experience, instant information, data, and action capabilities. 

 

Get A Little Uncomfortable 

Showing up online can be intimidating, but the expectation to have multiple forms of communication is growing by the day. Your customers will love being able to follow and interact with you online, so if you have been hesitant to jump on the social media bandwagon, it’s time to get a little uncomfortable. More than ever, customers are connecting to and building relationships with brands that show up online. It is the ultimate way to meet them where they are and relate to them on a more intimate level. And here’s the deal, you don’t have to be on every platform. Pick one or two that you feel confident with and start posting content. Some brands love to inform on TikTok, others like the static posts of Instagram, and even still, others like the community aspect of Facebook. There are several platforms to try, so research others who are in your niche and see where they are showing up and how to get some ideas. 

 

How Can Utilli Help?

If you are ready to make the shift into supporting the needs of prosumers, Utilli can help! With our real-time data updates, an easy communication platform, and diverse payment options, we have everything you need to create a more empowering experience for your customers. Utilli has multiple features your customers will love like;

  • Mobile and website portals
  • Mobile and web payment processing
  • Energy Star portfolio connections 
  • Smart home device integration
  • Scheduled customer communications 
  • Energy benchmarking 
  • Real-time data 
  • Notifications and service updates
  • Automatic donations
  • Customer engagement upgrades 

 

Utilli was designed to meet your customers where they are. From the consumers to the prosumers and everyone in-between. We understand the value of creating a hands-on experience that is both user-friendly and empowering so your customers can have more autonomy in the way they interact with you and your services. 

If you are ready to make the shift and check out Utilli, you can request a demo today and we would be more than happy to go over the user interface, features, and technical information so you can get a hands-on experience with Utilli.

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Telecommunications

Utilities

And more...

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