Energy advice: how to tailor it to context?

Energy advice involves guidance for your target group that is specific to situation and actions that can be taken. Advice is interactive and can help to remove or reduce the following problems:

  • Lack of knowledge, skills and attention
  • Lack of personalised and context-relevant information in the right time and place

Advice can help both to change routine and habitual behaviour and to trigger energy efficiency investments.

What you need to do: 

People need advice at the right time and place and in the right form. Here are some ideas for making your advice more relevant for your target group and their context:

  1. Understand your target group’s  practices (what advice is needed and in what form) -> learn to know them
  2. Provide advice at an opportune moment (when topical for the user)-> check your timing
  3. Involve users in the development of advice formats – test you ideas
  4. Provide advice close to your target group (through their usual contacts, through multiple channels)
When does it work?: 

When the organization providing advice is trusted, impartial and tailored to the target group

When people have the means to follow up on the advice

When advice builds on clients’ needs and offers multiple benefits

When advice can be provided on multiple problems and solutions (e.g., technologies) in one place

What do you need to look out for: 

► Make sure you have the appropriate social and technical skills to provide advice
► It may be difficult to bridge the gap between advice and implementation (so that advice is actually followed)
► In order to maintain funding, you need to show evidence of the effectiveness of your advice