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More than 80% of Australians “concerned” or “very concerned” about power prices

3 minute read | July 2024

Latest Nielsen CMV/Ad Intel research shows 14% jump in ad spend by power companies as they combat record rise in Aussies switching energy providers

  • Mass exodus from AGL to rival providers
  • Top ad spenders in energy sector, plus category ad spend over last 12 months
  • States and territories most worried by rising power prices

Sydney – July 3, 2024 – Recent Nielsen Consumer and Media View (CMV) data shows 82% of Australians are “concerned” about power prices, with more than 45% “very concerned”.

Additionally, more than 13% of Australians have switched energy providers in the last year, with a further 12% planning to do the same over the next 12 months. 

Of those planning to switch, just over 41% say their main reason is cost, followed by service reliability (11.6%), ease of bill payment (8.5%), energy-saving ideas from the provider (6.8%), followed by staff courtesy and helpfulness (4.3%). Support of the local community, green programs, ease of switching addresses, and website usability made up the small remainder.

Nielsen Ad Intel data also shows that to combat this growing lack of brand loyalty in the sector, energy providers spent more than $152 million on advertising between June 2023 and May 2024 – a 14% year-on-year increase.

Topping the list of ad investment in the sector were 1. AGL, 2. Origin Energy, 3. Alinta Energy, 4. Energy Australia, and 5. Engie.

Over the last 12 months, almost 14% of AGL customers switched to Origin Energy, with a further 8.7% moving over to Energy Australia.

Overall, Origin was the most frequent supplier customers switched to, accounting for nearly 23% of all defections, followed by Red Energy, and Energy Australia.

At a state and territory level, Victorians are the most unhappy with their energy providers, followed by WA, NT, Queensland, NSW, SA, then Tasmania, while Canberans were mostly unconcerned.

Nielsen Ad Intel’s Pacific Commercial Lead, Rose Lopreiato, said: “The increase in ad spend for the utilities sector reflects the growing need to attract and retain the burgeoning number of ‘energy nomads’ who often aren’t locked into contracts and take a better deal as soon as they see one. That makes it more crucial than ever to know in near-realtime what’s on offer from competitors, as well as where and how much they’re spending – the kind of data Nielsen Ad Intel delivers quickly and efficiently.”

Glenn Channell, Nielsen’s Pacific Head of Advanced Analytics added: “While our data shows the demographic impact cost of living is having on Australian energy consumers, the importance to identify and segment consumers based on their needs and values remains critical. Understanding where and how to connect with these electricity segments can be the difference between retaining, and growing your customer base. The increasing lack of brand loyalty among Australians makes the need to leverage data, like Nielsen CMV, more crucial than ever.”

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