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TEC Hosts Touchstone Energy Brand Camp

January 15, 2018

Electric cooperatives have a long history of making a positive impact on the communities they serve, in addition to providing reliable and affordable electrical service. It's all part of the cooperative difference that members have valued for decades. But as new technologies emerge and demographics change, it's more important than ever for co-ops to tout the cooperative difference.

That was the message delivered by Lynn Moore, executive director of Touchstone Energy Cooperatives, in November at the first Touchstone Energy Brand Camp that TEC has hosted since the association took over as regional manager for the Texas Touchstone Energy program in 2016.

"We want to show our history, and we want to speak to members about the important things that we're currently doing," said Moore, who took over as executive director for Touchstone in May 2017. "But we also want to talk about the future, because if we can't show them the future, that 18- to 24-year-old member who's not paying an electric bill with you yet doesn't know why they should find a cooperative territory to live in."

Moore encouraged attendees at the Fort Worth event to leverage the tools they already have to share the cooperative story and purpose. "Do good things and tell people," she said, "because that helps people to know that they can trust you and you're working for the right reasons."

The event included an Adobe InDesign workshop; discussions on strategy execution, cooperative performance and business development; and overviews of Touchstone's programs and campaigns.

The 2016–2017 National Survey on the Cooperative Difference showed electric cooperatives excel in member satisfaction and are poised to increase member engagement. Anne Harvey, Touchstone director of member relations, touched on several ways the survey could inform strategies to boost engagement, including promoting the Co-op Connections card, teaching about energy efficiency and doing community service.

"Don't forget to have fun with your members if that's how you can engage," Harvey said. "It's the power of human connections."