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Utility Professionals Focus on Customers at Annual EEI/AGA Conference

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ATLANTA, April 16, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Apogee Interactive's Chief Software Architect and Co-founder Joel Gilbert P.E. addressed more than 450 electric and gas professionals gathered today for the joint annual Edison Electric Institute/American Gas Association Customer Service Conference in Atlanta. Gilbert issued a wake-up call to the industry in the opening morning sessions, urging them to reestablish their position as the most trusted resource for energy answers for their customers.

"Utilities are undergoing an informational assault, with utility websites and email messaging competing with virtually unlimited third-party sites and senders offering energy services and products. But when it comes down to really being able to save the customer money on their utility bills, no one else is as trusted nor can provide the full menu of options and advice like the utility," stated Gilbert.

Gilbert, an industry consultant, pioneer of online energy efficiency applications, and one of EEI's most frequently requested conference speakers, offered his insights and experience on how utilities can regain the market microphone and once again position themselves as the primary resource of practical and accurate energy answers for their customers.

"Whether it's the texts, mobile web, or by conventional phone, utilities need to be present at the "moments of truth" when customers want and need information to purchase energy efficiency options, he advised. " And with Google at everyone's fingertips, utility representatives need to be prepared to answer more varied questions than ever before or they run the risk of losing the customer's trust and confidence."

According to Gilbert, "Most utilities are on the right track, but moving so slowly, they risk being run over. So, agility is vital. Mindshare is being eroded due to the blur of media, so utilities must rethink their messages to make sense to younger audiences and diverse minds. Finally, utilities must stop thinking simply about programs and more about influence. Agility, Mindshare, Influence gives new meaning to "AMI" and defines what is needed now for building a better customer experience."

Gilbert founded Apogee in 1993 to create one of the first online energy efficiency training programs and energy calculators ever to be offered in the utility marketplace.

APOGEE Interactive Inc. (www.apogee.net) is the leading provider of online energy analysis applications to 650 electric and gas utilities across the US, reaching more than 56 million customers. Founded in 1993, Apogee pioneered electronic applications designed to increase a utility's customer engagement and today its predictive software consistently earns high marks for accuracy and ease of use. From EnergyInsights™ modules for residential and commercial audits to Eco-Stewards™ energy and environmental curriculum for students, Apogee's applications operate on desktop, iPad and mobile devices; integrate with all leading billing providers; and now offer voice or text capability through a utility's interactive voice response system. Clients include investor-owned, public and cooperative energy companies including Con Edison (ED), American Electric Power (AEP), Entergy (ETR), Southern Company (SO), NSTAR (NST), Salt River Project, and Jackson EMC.

CONTACT: Karen Morris, kmorris@apogee.net, 678-684-6801

Source:Apogee Interactive, Inc.