You'd be right in thinking Here Comes the Sun is more than just a Beatles song, given the current solar industry boom.
According to the Solar Energy Industries Association, the United States built enough solar power capacity to power 10.7 million homes in the first quarter of 2018, up 13% from the previous year. If you're new to solar or a seasoned sun worshipper, you're a part of an industry that's only going to get brighter.
Although solar energy has long been a part of many people's vocabulary, it is still a foreign concept to a large portion of the population. When it comes to solar marketing ideas, this creates a difficult conundrum. Is it a case of "those who do, already have," and "those who don't know, don't want"?
If that's the case, how does efficient solar lead generation look? How would you join the campaign to ensure that more people are exposed to the sun's rays? Are there any marketing strategies in place that are specifically tailored to the needs of the solar industry?
The short answer is that a few digital marketing tactics have proven to be successful across the board, regardless of which industries use them. White Hat SEO is still the most powerful way to drive relevant organic traffic and generate leads, and it can be used in any industry.
The devil, as in most things, is in the specifics. The specifics in this case are how to implement solar marketing strategies that account for the industry's complexities.
Fortunately, you won't have to search too hard. Here are nine ways to use digital lead generation and solar ads to get your slice of the sun.
When looking at energy alternative numbers, it's clear that solar is on the rise in comparison to other players.
Furthermore, reward programs are being implemented all over the world, which would only serve to increase adoption. This means that, even though environmental issues aren't a big factor in customer decision-making, financial consequences are. Solar Powering America, a program run by the US Department of Energy, offers benefits to both individuals and companies.
Although the industry is unquestionably rising, it is currently experiencing some serious growing pains.
When it comes to solar ads, the biggest challenge is navigating an industry that, although increasingly growing, is stuck in the middle. This means you can't just copy a marketing technique from another industry and apply it to your own. You must be more descriptive.
Only by comprehending the distinct characteristics of solar lead generation and marketing will you be able to do this.
This leads us to the next step.
Booms can be a little painful at times.
Historically, there have been two groups of people who have solar panels installed in their homes:
Those who have been adopting for decades
Those who were referred by adoptive parents from decades ago
Adoption by the masses had been a pipe dream until recently. As a result, we are actually caught in the middle of two paradigms: fringe adoption and mass adoption. Author Geoffrey Moore's concept of "crossing the chasm," an efficient way of explaining the tightrope between a climate of only early adopters and one of agreed common practice, was used in an EnergySage study to pinpoint the current moment.
Although crossing this "chasm" is exciting, it's a difficult time for marketers because it places a lot of pressure on them to ensure that mass adoption occurs. Marketers must work much harder to produce as many leads as possible while still ensuring that they are targeting the right people in order to achieve long-term success.
Unfortunately, as we'll see in the next point, producing leads isn't always as easy as it seems.
It should come as no surprise that 68 percent of respondents agreed that generating traffic and leads was their company's greatest marketing challenge, according to Hubspot's study on the state of inbound marketing. In addition, 80% of marketers said their lead generation efforts were only marginally or moderately successful. BrightTALK (BrightTALK, 2015) Wow, that was incredible. We're not scientists, but, in the words of a band that could use some light, "Nobody said it was fast." No one told me it would be this difficult.”
However, there is good news: successful lead generation is possible with hard work, intelligence, and a concentration on long-term solar marketing strategies. In reality, we built our company around SEO because we've discovered it to be the most successful way of generating leads that not only bring in new customers in the short term, but also keep them coming back in the long run.
As previously mentioned, the solar industry has traditionally relied on referrals to stay afloat. You talk with your neighbor as he installs solar, and then you do the same. The next move is to implement a digital version of this referral method.
This can work in a variety of ways. The first step is to make sure you have methods in place to collect positive feedback on your work and prominently show it on your homepage. The second is connection building, which is the modern-day equivalent of a referral scheme. You instantly increase your reputation if you can get credible sources to refer to your company's work. It's the digital version of word of mouth, and it's fantastic for solar marketing.
It's no secret that people despise being bombarded with advertisements. So much so that, according to Hubspot, 4 out of 5 users have abandoned a website due to a pop-up or autoplaying advertisement.
So, here's the situation. Don't bombard people with advertisements. Rather, provide them with useful content that will inform them about the advantages of solar energy installation. Make it short and to-the-point. When it comes to generating traffic and getting people to engage with your brand, this will be your most valuable asset.
Videos are successful. It's usually the closest you'll get to meeting a contractor before they start working on your home. In addition, videos can be used as a moving brochure for your company. You will demonstrate that you are a reliable supplier who has completed jobs effectively by showing some of your previous ventures.
Yes, keyword research is needed for anyone wishing to initiate or sustain an effective digital marketing campaign in any industry. What makes solar marketing unique is that it's important to account for people who aren't aware they're searching for solar until they find it. One of the main features of a business about to boom is that you have to show customers what they want before they even realize they want it.
We're not going to linger on this one. Simply put, don't do it. Several solar lead generation companies charge a premium for lead lists. These leads are often obsolete, meaningless, and include the names of people who do not want to be contacted by you. Don't get caught in the pit.
You've hit marketing gold if you can bring your business to the top of a Search Engine Results Page (SERP) by ethical means that take into account the main mandates of the major search engines:
Because of the effort required to get there, it will be extremely difficult for your rivals to overtake you.
Any other marketing tactics you use will be boosted by your placement once you are on Page 1.
70% to 80% of people actually ignore paid advertisements and go straight to organic performance.
People will continue to connect to you in various ways if you are seen as an authoritative source, particularly in a scientific field. This will only help to improve your lead generation and traffic.
As your company expands, the long-term benefits of relying on SEO to get you near the top of a SERP would be invaluable.
Before we leave you, we'd like to congratulate you!
We're pretty pumped about the switch to solar power. As a business full of big thinkers trying to make a difference in the world, we'd like to work in the clean energy sector.
Our partnerships with solar companies have been extremely fruitful so far, as we've discovered that SEO can be extremely beneficial to them at any stage of growth.
Why don't you get in touch with us? We have a free SEO strategy analysis that will help you determine how effective your lead generation efforts are.