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Brand Strategy and Market Segmentation Study for a Leading Utilities Industry Client

With the rise in technical awareness among the global population, companies in the utilities industry are poised to witness major challenges in effectively meeting consumers’ needs while managing revenue downturns.

Today, amidst myriad new opportunities and challenges facing the utilities market, companies are forced to adopt a more sustainable approach to cost management, brand strategy creation, and enhanced spend visibility. The global utilities market faces competitive pressure from several other players in the industry, making it necessary to leverage new technologies and develop a well-defined brand strategy to thrive.

As the utilities industry transforms itself digitally, companies operating in this sector are expected to face new challenges in the form of regulatory changes and shifting market conditions. Though technology acts a major facilitator for change in the utilities industry, new market opportunities accompanied by unforeseen risk factors will further complicate the entire process of digital transformation.

The Business Challenge

  • The client: A utilities industry client

A leading utilities industry client based out of the US approached Infiniti to gain an understanding of the market to determine new opportunities, risk factors, and growth drivers. Additionally, as the client was unable to devise an effective brand strategy, they were looking at creating a well-defined brand strategy to navigate the common roadblocks and improve the bottom line.

How Can Market Segmentation Help Companies?

Market segmentation helps organizations in devising appropriate promotional and marketing strategies to cater to the growing needs of individual market segments. To gain a competitive edge, companies need to understand the market and stay aware of the industry challenges and barriers to growth. Market segmentation also helps in building a strong brand strategy that articulates and communicates the core value of an organization.

Summary of our market segmentation engagement

Market Segmentation

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Client Journey

To help the client gauge several factors influencing their brand value and help them identify the emerging trends, the market segmentation experts at Infiniti followed a strategic research approach. The approach included primary and secondary research methodologies coupled with qualitative and quantitative data collection procedures. The market intelligence experts also reached out to various stakeholders in the utilities industry to understand the factors that are influencing market growth.

Solution Benefits and the Business Impact

Infiniti’s market segmentation engagement helped the utilities client in increasing their competitiveness and profitability. A detailed assessment of the utilities market also helped them to improve – brand strategy, brand equity, brand recall, customer retention, and marketing communications. The market segmentation assessment also enabled them to reach a wider audience and drive sales across different segments.

The Future

The implementation of smart grids and the realization of electric power systems will be major factors driving the growth of the global utilities market. Organizations will have to determine the future direction of their markets and understand the impact of technological advancements on market growth and business models. Regardless of the chosen business model, players in the utilities sector will have to adopt strategies to leverage their current business position and enhance their future competitive positioning.

A must-read case study for strategy specialists and decision makers looking to develop an understanding of the utilities industry.

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What Fresh Challenges Await the Energy Sector in 2018?

The energy sector around the world is facing unprecedented challenges from rapidly changing market demands. To survive the pressure, they must adapt to technological advances such as intermittent renewable power generation, rooftop solar panels, behind the meter storage, as well as an increase in customer expectations. This new market context is unpredictable, and embracing it requires an overhaul of utilities’ operating and business models. Furthermore, new technologies ranging from smart meters to rooftop solar and energy storage —and the problems they bring— have the potential to disrupt the utilities sector. After remaining relatively unchanged for the last century, the grid is facing a host of new challenges that are evolving the business models in the utilities sector, changing consumer expectations and causing regulatory models to adapt. Here are some key challenges that we feel will impact the energy sector this year:Request Proposal

Government policy and regulation

There is a great deal of uncertainty when it comes to regulations in the energy sector. It is generally difficult at an institutional level to set regulations that provide visibility over several decades. At the same time, the stability and predictability of market regulations over long periods depend in large part on how costs to society are kept in check. If these costs are more efficiently managed, the risk of reversals in public policy increases considerably.

Aging workforce

One of the most significant challenges facing the energy sector today is the aging workforce coupled with a decline in available talent. As per estimates, 50% of the workforce in the utilities sector in the US will retire in the next 10 years. Many utilities require additional support to work on new capital projects, and those projects are increasingly complex. This need is particularly acute with engineering and design, where the talent supply is greatly diminished. At the present rate, the gap in finding appropriate replacements is expected to increase in the coming years.

Modernizing grid infrastructure

As far as the utilities sector is concerned, a modernized grid means better security, reduced peak loads, increased integration of renewables, and lower operational costs. The goal is to use technologies, equipment, and controls that communicate and work together to deliver electricity more reliably and efficiently. Consumers will also benefit from the reduction in the frequency and duration of power outages, reduced impact from storms and have service restored more quickly when outages occur. In addition, with easy access to their usage data, consumers can better manage their own energy consumption and costs. Though the ‘smart-meter’ is expected to make it big in the years to the come, companies in the energy sector will face stiff competition from Amazon Alexa, Google and others. This should serve as a wake-up call for utilities to be agile, flexible, and operationally sound. 

Cyber attacks

Digital disruptions are undoubtedly creating new opportunities in the energy sector. However, they also come with their fair share of threats. On one hand, technology is instrumental in realizing intelligent grids and interconnected assets; on the other hand, it introduces new threats such as the possibility of cyber attacks. The developing interconnectivity and proximity of energy systems mean that conflicts can have ripple effects on energy markets and prices. New technologies, such as batteries and grid-embedded generation, are making the cybersecurity of grid systems more vulnerable. With most companies being highly inexperienced in handling large-scale cyber attacks, there are higher chances of future wars and attacks to have a larger cyber component.

To know more about the opportunities and challenges in the utilities sector

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