3 Actionable Marketing Strategies Solar Firms Should Use

Amy Hou  |  May 22, 2019   |  Energy & Sustainability  


This is a contributed article from Chris Woodard, Co-Founder of Handle. Handle builds software that helps contractors, subcontractors, and materials suppliers secure their lien rights and get paid faster by automating the collection process of unpaid construction invoices.

The future of solar energy is bright, but the industry is experiencing growing pains. While the majority of consumers are aware of the wonders of solar energy, residential solar installers still face challenges when it comes to attracting customers. Finding qualified leads at a reasonable cost can be difficult without an effective marketing strategy.

Here are some ways residential solar companies can attract more customers.

1. Educate potential customers through content marketing.

Solar is still a new concept for most consumers. In the big picture, the technology is still in its infancy and most residential solar installations are purchased by early adopters. Interested consumers will have a lot of questions that you need to answer before they make a decision.

One of the best ways to achieve this is by making high-quality educational materials that can establish your business as an authoritative resource. Content marketing is a tried-and-tested strategy and is a perfect fit for the solar industry. Your company should create blog posts, infographics, eBooks, and other educational materials that will help push potential customers into switching to solar energy. Of course, don’t forget to promote your content and use call-to-action triggers that engage customers and make them more inclined to partner with you.  

2. Generate leads through customer referrals.

Customers are your greatest asset when it comes to generating leads. Since residential solar is in its growth stage, the early adopters are your mouthpiece in getting the word out to their family, friends, and community. To encourage this, you need to create a strong referral system and give them a bonus when they send a lead to your company.

Customers are your greatest asset when it comes to generating leads.

There are several ways you can approach customer referrals. One effective way is by inviting customers to an ambassador program. The key here is having a competitive referral bonus that they could get each time they refer someone to you.

Put up a page on your website explaining the benefits of being a brand ambassador (e.g. helping friends to switch to clean energy, referral bonus, etc.). In addition, guide ambassadors on what makes a good referral, such as friends with high electricity bills or family members who are interested in clean energy.

Once the page is up, promote the program by publishing a blog post and advertising it on your social media channels. You can also send it to your active mailing list.

3. Tap into the power of community events.

Digital marketing promotions are effective strategies, but they are not the only channels you can tap into. Going directly to local communities and talking to residential consumers is an effective way to establish trust and earn leads.

Local events provide the perfect opportunity to have a conversation with prospective buyers. When people attend an event you sponsor, they will be familiarized with your company and the products and services you offer. Choosing the right type of event is crucial in getting effective leads. Ideally, you want a targeted audience that is more likely to be interested in clean energy. For example, environment-related events are perfect for sponsorship, as the attendees are likely to be environmentally conscious.

There are several approaches to sponsorship marketing you can consider. If a community event you are sponsoring has activities that involve prizes, you could donate a solar installation package to a lucky audience member. Equipment donation is another effective option. For example, you can power a community event with solar energy, increasing your brand’s visibility while giving a valuable service to the community.

Residential solar companies are in a relatively young industry and marketing can be a challenge. However, this very reason provides solar companies with unique marketing opportunities. It is up to you to dive deep into customers’ pain points and be creative in attracting them to switch to clean, sustainable energy.

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About Amy Hou

Amy Hou is a Marketing Manager at Urjanet, overseeing content and communications. She enjoys writing about the latest industry updates in sustainability, energy efficiency, and data innovation.

Tags   Energy   |   Revenue Growth   |   Solar   |