Promoting Energy Safety to Your Customers? How to Breathe Life into Your Marketing

AdminBlog, Customer, Effective, Messaging, Safety, Utility Communications

When I began my career in energy journalism at The Energy Daily, my mentor and editor John McCaughey gave me a tip: “Your readers will die soon enough — try not to bore them to death!”     Energy Safety: Good Copy and Provocative Art Can Save Lives That tip is particularly useful when writing about energy safety. Some energy … Read More

Three Steps, 15 Minutes and Presto — You’re on Your Way to Becoming a Better Writer!

AdminBlog, Effective, Utility Communications, Writing

The best writers never stop practicing their craft. For those of you interested in becoming a better writer, I can recommend three easy steps. Tomorrow morning, when you’re fresh and while you’re waiting for your coffee to cool down, I recommend you do these three simple things that will take you no more than 15 minutes in total. Consider it … Read More

Community Relations: Do the Right Thing, Then Talk About It

AdminBlog, Communities, Customer, Effective, Utility Communications, Utility Community Relations, Utility Stakeholders

In Psalm 30, it is written, “Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning.” Thirty centuries later, in a distinctly secular pop song, Maureen McGovern sang: “There’s got to be a morning after, If we can hold on through the night. We have a chance to find the sunshine, Let’s keep on looking for the light.” … Read More

Three Steps to Writing Better Annual Reports

AdminBlog, Effective, Utility Communications

Congratulations! You have won the departmental lottery and now get to write this year’s annual report. Don’t panic! When confronting the (potential) enormity of the task before you, remember the timeless advice shared by practitioners of long-format writing: “How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time!” All kidding aside, you have a big task, with plenty of … Read More

Storytelling: Show, Don’t Tell (!) in Your Utility Communications

AdminBlog, Creative, Effective, Utility Communications

Utility communicators looking to boost their storytelling skills might want to check out eulogies. Not trying to be morbid here, but the best eulogies offer a master class in storytelling. Earlier this year, as you may know, there was a mass shooting in a grocery store in Boulder, Colorado, about 10 miles from EEC’s office. Ten people were killed, including … Read More

Utility Rate Case Communications: Do It Right

AdminBlog, Customer, Effective, Messaging, Utility Communications, Utility Marketing, Utility Rate Case Communications, Utility Stakeholders

Among policymakers, there’s a lot more talk about energy infrastructure these days, following the catastrophic Texas power blackouts and the Biden administration’s $2.25-trillion infrastructure plan. That means rate cases and rate case communications. U.S. electric utilities invested about $40 billion to build new transmission projects in 2019, a sharp increase over earlier years, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration … Read More

Repetition, the Secret Sauce of Message Discipline

AdminBlog, Effective, Messaging, Utility Communications

One of the cornerstones of effective communications, a former presidential adviser once said, is message discipline: “Right about the time the communications staff is about to throw up from repeating the same message,” he said, “the public begins to hear it.” Who said it? Was it David Gergen? Karl Rove? My efforts to track down that quote have proven fruitless. … Read More

New Year’s Resolution: Ban Buzzwords!

AdminBlog, Creative, Effective, Utility Communications

Credit: iStock Take a look at that wall of Post-it notes. How many of those buzzwords and meaningless phrases have crept into your vocabulary (and hence your writing)? I will own up to using a few of those phrases, including “client facing,” “business-to-business” and “integrated.” But I have never “basted the turkey,” “boiled the ocean” or “eaten dogfood,” mine or … Read More

Gifts for Energy Communicators: Our Best-Read Content from 2020

AdminBlog, Effective, Utility Communications

Gifts for Energy Communicators: Our Best-Read Content from 2020 We’re finally winding down a year like no other. Nearly all of our workplaces, if not our lives, were roiled by the COVID-19 pandemic. A record number of hurricanes hit the U.S., mainly along the Gulf Coast, and another active wildfire season engulfed parts of California, the Pacific Northwest and Colorado. … Read More

How to Write a Press Release: Tips from Both Sides of the Laptop

AdminEffective, Messaging, Utility Communications, Utility Media Relations

Millennials are not easily frightened. When stumped by a question or assigned a task they don’t know how to perform, they Google it. I am sure members of the Boomer, Gen X or Gen Y generations would have done the same thing, had Google existed in those far-off days. Members of those generations tended to learn by doing (unless you’re … Read More