Pepco Holdings, Inc.
Project Date: 2012 – 2015
Project Type: Corporate Rebranding
While Pepco Holdings, Inc. (PHI, NYSE: POM) had a website, a social media program, and a fledgling mobile application, none of those critical communications tools were aligned with an overall communications strategy. In fact, the website was nine years old, the social media program was reactive and held limited hours, and the mobile app looked like a 90’s website. To properly leverage the communications tools that all customers expect organizations to have today, we developed an overarching digital strategy. Our goals were to meet customers where they are, improve their experience and, in turn, improve PHI’s customer satisfaction.
Our first step in improving the digital program was to streamline and turn our social media channels into sources of customer engagement. The new strategy included posting photos, video and information about initiatives that ranged from system reliability improvements to energy efficiency tips to merger updates. The proactive stance included 24/7 engagement during storms and power restoration.
The complete overhaul of the website included leading-edge responsive design to give customers custom access on all of their devices, and photo-driven content to help support our reputational turnaround effort. The website is five different sites – PHI and its four subsidiaries – seamlessly linked with 2,000 pages of content.
The mobile app was a new concept in the utility industry and updating its functionality and look improved engagement. The new customer experience included checking for outages, paying their bills and reporting burned out streetlights.
The results of the digital strategy overhaul include a complete shift in tonality from negative comments to accolades, a dramatic jump in engagement, and industry recognition for outstanding work. Specifically:
- Social media
Since the implementation of the new Social Media Strategy in 2012, PHI’s Facebook likes have increased by 1,342 percent and Twitter followers by 360 percent
To date, traffic remains significantly higher on the new site compared to the old website. Compared to an average month on the previous site, total sessions increased by 45%, page views increased by 46% and mobile sessions increased by 158%
- Mobile app
Since launch in 2012, there have been 323,764 mobile app downloads
Since 2012, there have been 25 social media and website related recognitions and awards, including:
- Five website-related platinum MarCom Awards received in 2014
- American Web Design Award for PHI Responsive Website Redesign received in 2015
- Interactive Media Awards Best in Class Award in the Utilities category for the website awarded in 2015
- Public Relations Society of America Bronze Anvil Award of Commendation received in 2013 (Entry topic: “Weathering the Storm: Using social media to meet customers where they are”)