Solar is the market leader in the rapidly expanding renewable energy sector.
Whatever area of the solar panel market you specialize in, it’s likely that a sizable portion of your clients is actively and frequently using social media platforms.
Solar marketing through social media is increasingly important today. Invest in the available industry-specific social media management tools as a solar player. For customers to see the human side of your brand, establish genuine connections with them.
Let’s get started with the introduction of some helpful solar marketing strategies in this article.
Table of Contents
- How To Market Solar?
- Useful Solar Marketing Strategies
- How Can Social Media Help Us Sell Solar?
- 1. A Strong Social Media Presence Builds Credibility
- 2. Social Media Puts A Spotlight On Your Content
- 3. Social Media Can Connect You To New Prospects
- 4. Social Media Keeps You In Touch With Past Customers
- 5. Position Your Brand As The Solar Expert On Social Media
- 6. Use Social Media To Engage With The Community
- 7. Gain Insight On Marketing Spend And Roi
- Some Social Media Platforms For Solar Industry
- The Bottom Line
How To Market Solar?
Every successful brand, company, or cause relies heavily on marketing. It involves figuring out how to communicate the value of your offering to customers in a way that encourages them to make a purchase.
In this article, we’ll go over four marketing strategies that businesses just getting started with their marketing initiatives should take into account. Different time and financial commitments are needed for each. We’ll provide you with the facts you need to make decisions, but ultimately it’s up to you to choose the options that will serve you best both now and in the future.
Starting with the foundations of marketing, let’s move on to the strategies: your company and your audience.
Know Your Brand
Selling something that you don’t understand is impossible. To help you create the most effective solar marketing messaging, respond to the following questions before beginning your campaign:
- What distinguishes your company’s brand from rivals?
- What are the values of your brand?
- What impression do you want to make on prospective clients?
Know Your Audience
You must communicate with your target market in their language if you want your solar advertising to be successful. Find out the following by doing some research:
- What group do you want to appeal to?
- Which values do they uphold?
- What queries and worries do they have? What gives them pause, and why might they hesitate to buy solar products or services?
- What issues do they have, and how can you address them?
Sparktoro’s free audience search tools can help you learn more about your target market if you’re having trouble identifying your audience. You can also use Facebook Audience Insight tools to learn crucial information.
Useful Solar Marketing Strategies
We’re prepared to look at some strategies now that we’ve identified our target audience and ourselves.
1. Organic Social Media
Creating leads using social media is highly effective. The secret, however, isn’t in posting a ton of content: It involves engaging in meaningful conversation and taking part in it.
Find out which platforms your audience uses the most to start. For instance, Facebook, which is seeing the majority of its growth in that demographic, should be your first port of call if you’re targeting older generations. Conversely, younger audiences prefer Twitter and Instagram. In addition to TikTok, which is enormously popular across a broad age range and largely untapped in solar marketing, other platforms like Linkedin, Reddit, and Quora each have their own distinct demographics to investigate.
Many groups on social media are devoted to all aspects of solar, from emerging technology to the most recent regulations to sales techniques. Renewable energy and sustainability are popular topics. Therefore, there are lots of excellent chances for solar marketing.
Check out organizations from your state and neighborhood as well. Consider looking into the state chapters of organizations like SEIA.
Thought should be given to quality over quantity: Engaging people with quality posts on social media will have a much greater impact than simply pumping out mindless content because users can usually tell the difference between poor quality content mills and the good stuff. Some quick pointers on what makes for high-quality content:
- making a comment on another person’s post. If you don’t have a sizable social media following, leaving comments on other people’s posts is a great way to reach their followers (plus, the other person will appreciate your engaging with their content). Your comment should thank the author of the original post and offer fresh insight.
- writing an original post that directs readers to helpful resources or solves problems for them. Before giving your advice in a post, try to captivate the reader with a brief story.
- Use hashtags and tags sparingly. When people tag way too many people and add way too many hashtags, it’s usually a sign of “spammy” content (and the algorithms have noticed this). You should only use 1-3 hashtags and tag 1-3 people in your post to maximize reach.
For managing and serving your customers, some social media sites, including Facebook and Twitter, provide customer service tools. Customers who are interested in your services can contact you directly through messages or comments on your page, giving you the opportunity to respond right away.
2. Paid Social Ads
Although social media is a useful marketing channel, obtaining organic leads often requires a lot of work. Paid social advertising can be a good option if you’d rather spend money than time, but you should make sure your ads are tailored to make them stand out from the crowd.
In terms of generating leads for businesses, LinkedIn claims to be the best. LinkedIn is an excellent place to advertise if you’re going after businesses or professionals. Using LinkedIn for B2C engagement could be dangerous because it has the most expensive ads on this list.
If you’re unsure of how to sell solar on Facebook, the system’s Ads Manager enables you to oversee your entire solar advertising campaign in a single location. To ensure you don’t spend more than you can afford, Ads Manager offers comprehensive tools to help you choose your audience, set goals, create ads, and establish firm budgets and timelines.
Because many trends develop on Twitter before spreading to other platforms, it is unique in that regard. This benefit is leveraged by Twitter’s advertising platform, which enables you to engage people as soon as trends and movements are underway. With more than 20 product options available, Twitter can help you promote your goods or services, and it offers effective targeting tools to help you reach the audiences who matter most. Additionally, Twitter’s robust analytics tools let you see how your ad campaign’s impressions, engagements, and cost per result are performing overall.
There are many ad agencies available to create marketing campaigns suitable for almost any budget if you don’t feel like slogging it out on your own with social media advertising.
3. Paid Search Ads
With paid search ads, you can purchase the right to appear in front of customers while they are looking for companies just like yours.
Google Ads offers targeted ad solutions for promoting apps, driving sales, leads, and website traffic. You can choose from a variety of campaign formats within these to promote your good or service. Google only charges you for results, so you only have to pay when a customer clicks through to your website or gives your company a call.
Similar to Google, Microsoft Advertising provides respectable targeting options for your ad campaign. But it isn’t quite as sturdy. Geographic location, dates, time zones, demographics, and more can all be targeted with Microsoft, whereas these features are either nonexistent or underdeveloped in Google’s service. The intensity of competition is another benefit of Microsoft Advertising. Because there is less competition on Bing, your average cost per click will be lower.
As always, if you’re overwhelmed by search engine ads, connect with an ad agency to handle them for you.
4. Seo & Content Marketing
SEO, or search engine optimization, is the process of improving content so that it appears higher in search results. So, for instance, when a potential customer searches “solar installer in Delaware” or “best residential solar installers,” good SEO practices can help your business appear near the top of the search results.
Content marketing is a concept that works hand in hand with SEO. Content marketing is extremely popular, much like SEO, but it can be extremely challenging to drive traffic without a significant investment.
But creating and implementing an SEO strategy and content marketing plan is by no means a marketing tactic for “beginners.” Both of them require substantial knowledge, a lot of effort, and, you guessed it, cash. The best course of action in this situation is to refrain from either activity until you are prepared to hire a specialist for the job or have the funding to dedicate to it.
The best use of their limited time and resources should be sought out by those who are just starting to market their solar company. Our recommendation is to first concentrate on the first three topics we covered (social media, social ads, and search ads), after which you should consider SEO and content marketing as you develop your marketing strategy and team.
How Can Social Media Help Us Sell Solar?
1. A Strong Social Media Presence Builds Credibility
88% of consumers conduct online research before making a purchasing decision, according to a 2017 Ecommerce study.
When leads search for your company, what do they find?
The first result on the list will probably be your website, but you can be sure they’ll also find your Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and any other platforms you use. You won’t gain any favors by neglecting to participate in these well-liked channels, or by maintaining profiles but infrequently posting.
However, a strong presence across a number of platforms can help people trust your brand. Visitors to your social media pages will get a sense of your company’s personality as well as your level of knowledge and care if they see images of the projects you’ve completed, testimonials from satisfied clients, and you actively engage with others on their behalf. They’ll feel connected to you and trust you if they like what they see. For customers searching for a solar installer, these are crucial considerations.
In the end, they are selecting a business that will have access to their residence or place of business. They are putting their trust in them to install a solar system with intricate electrical connections that will cost a lot of money but should last for decades. If something goes wrong, it might affect their job or personal finances.
Prospects will feel much more at ease with your company than they would have if they hadn’t seen it on your social media profiles, which should portray an attentive, knowledgeable business with satisfied customers.
2. Social Media Puts A Spotlight On Your Content
There are no drawbacks to establishing credibility or reaching out to new clients. However, the caliber and applicability of the content you’re sharing are the key determinant of how successfully you accomplish those goals.
Sharing content that communicates these three things will help solar installers get the most return on their social media investment:
- Their brand and company culture
- Information that is educational and helpful to potential customers
- Content that encourages engagement
The Buyer’s Journey is a model that depicts how customers move from the point at which they first identify a problem to the point at which they are prepared to take action in response to a solution.
Create your content with this model in mind, keeping in mind that you’ll always be interacting with people at various stages. To make sure you’re bringing in new leads while also bringing along old ones, publish content that focuses on each stage.
You’re losing out on a ton of great traffic if you already create excellent content but just let it sit on your website without promoting it. Even if you work for a solar company that consistently ranks on Google’s first page (if that’s you, send me an email with your secrets), you can still stand to gain from expanding the reach of your content. Learn more about using SEO to rank your solar company on Google’s front page here.
The first half of the battle involves writing and creating the content. It’s equally crucial to advertise it and spread the word. Additionally, if you are not one of the publishers whose content consistently ranks on the first page, the more traffic your content receives from social media, the more likely it is that it will appear higher on Google or Bing’s search engine results page.
3. Social Media Can Connect You To New Prospects
The goal of digital marketing is to promote a brand online across all industries. Advertisers now have an unheard-of opportunity to reach the right audience with their message. And social media platforms have the information to get you in front of that specific audience.
But it costs money to get access to this information.
In the years prior to 2016, social media marketers could post content on behalf of their business and watch it naturally blend in with updates from the friends and families of their audience. But in 2016, the era of free or inexpensive social media marketing came to an end.
Facebook made a change to its algorithm that year, giving family and friend posts a higher priority than business posts. Fewer people will be viewing your company’s content as a result.
To combat this, businesses have been encouraged to sponsor their posts, which enables them to target their advertising by using the social media platform’s marketing data. On user timelines, these paid posts frequently mix with those from friends and family.
Whatever platform works best for your business, social media networks let you pay for posts to ensure that they reach the people you want to convert from prospects to leads to customers.
Make people who are scrolling through their newsfeeds aware that they have a problem and offer your business as the remedy. By interacting with the right people, your fan base and sales will increase. In order to figure out what kind of content works best for your company, many platforms also give you the option to A/B test your posts.
Pro Tip: The more comments your posts receive, the better! To increase the reach of your company’s posts, encourage your staff to like, comment, and share them.
4. Social Media Keeps You In Touch With Past Customers
You’ll discover that once you gain a following, a sizable percentage of social media users who engage with your brand are previous clients.
Despite the fact that solar energy is frequently a one-time investment, its owners continue to enjoy the free electricity it produces every year after they make the initial investment. It’s crucial to retain existing clients and tap into their resources.
Their genuine opinion of your company and of solar energy in general may help inspire others to take action with your company, even though keeping them satisfied and engaged with your brand won’t usually lead them to purchase another solar system.
They won’t forget about you if you continue to appear in front of them on their newsfeeds. As they discuss their solar system and your business with others who are interested in it, this can be helpful for word-of-mouth advertising and referrals.
Additionally, platforms like Facebook allow users to leave reviews, which is a very genuine and open way for a pleased customer to brag about how wonderful their solar installation was.
One of the best ways to authentically demonstrate social proof to your customers is through social media.
5. Position Your Brand As The Solar Expert On Social Media
For solar installers, establishing trust and conveying knowledge is crucial. Customers make a sizable financial commitment in the hopes that, in a few years, their solar system will have paid for itself and still have plenty of life left to produce free electricity.
Customers need to be aware that when they work with your business, they’re getting a team of experts. Solar-related horror stories abound, including the rooftop fires at Walmart. You’ll demonstrate to everyone watching that your team is knowledgeable by disseminating industry news, advice, and common questions.
Your audience will come to regard you as the authority on all things solar energy the more frequently you share insightful information that is both entertaining and easy to understand.
6. Use Social Media To Engage With The Community
Keep the “social” in social media in mind as you develop your strategy. Your customers can interact with your business directly, as opposed to through sponsorships and print ads.
Produce material that inspires debate and inquiries. The “Thing 1 vs. Thing 2 are excellent formats to promote user debates.
There are many resources available for how to deal with the solar haters, even though public comments about and to your brand can cause some to flee. Bear in mind to maintain your composure, but don’t be afraid to push back and defend solar energy or your business.
While Wendy’s Twitter strategy won’t work for everyone, your brand will determine how much “sass” your rebuttals should have. Nonetheless, keep it amusing while providing useful information. Your social media post’s reach can be increased by even critical or challenging comments, and you’ll get to show off some of your solar expertise to a wider audience.
7. Gain Insight On Marketing Spend And Roi
The ability gives marketers to track the results is one of the most thrilling and rewarding aspects of digital marketing and specifically social media marketing. You’ll probably never know whether a newspaper ad will produce 100 leads or none at all. However, if you use a sponsored post on Facebook, you can set up tracking to determine how many customers came from that post.
In addition to assisting you in defending your budget and presenting your team in the best possible light to management during budget discussions, doing this gives you important knowledge about how your target audience responds to the products you produce. In order to use your budget as effectively as possible, you can see what is working well and what needs to be changed.
Some Social Media Platforms For Solar Industry
The most effective tool for interacting with customers and business leaders is social media. Macro-content is supported by WordPress and YouTube. As opposed to this, microblogging websites like Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest exist. Let’s examine the ways in which the solar industry can profit from these social media channels.
The biggest social media site on the planet is Facebook. Within the next ten years, there will likely be 10 billion active users. As mentioned earlier, solar companies may cull this vast database based on their demographics, profession, location, and interests. These make room for strategically placed Facebook ads. They can be advantageous to even small and medium-sized players. Little more than $1 per day is spent on these advertisements.
Keep in mind that Facebook marketing is more about building brands than direct marketing. Through this platform, potential customers need to be educated via visual content as well as blog posts / white papers et al.
Generally speaking, solar energy companies underuse Facebook marketing.
It is advised that they use Facebook as effectively as possible if they want to stand out through their upcoming marketing strategies. Remarketing is also supported by Facebook.
We can therefore conclude that having a Facebook page that is attractive, has the necessary contact information, and has an appropriate CTA button will help solar energy companies increase traffic to their websites.
LinkedIn can be used effectively by solar businesses. All they need is a LinkedIn Page that accurately represents their brand. A LinkedIn Page serves as a portal for business websites, employee profiles, showcase pages, etc. using visual messages and brief text. White Papers, Case Studies, and e-books are some examples of the type of educational and informative content that solar companies should highlight on LinkedIn. Instead of trying to sell, it should be more about developing relationships (by educating and informing).
Solar companies could organically grow Twitterfollowersthroughannouncements of news and promotions.
It is the world’s second-largest search engine. YouTube should be effectively used by the solar industry to develop brand narratives. These videos could reach the greatest number of people in the shortest amount of time.
Instagram is a good platform for networking with solar influencers and connecting with their audience, aside from the 150-character profile description, images, and videos. User-generated content is very popular on Instagram. Instagram is a platform that can be used to request customer reviews and photos.
The Bottom Line
It takes time to develop your solar marketing skills.
Marketing solar involves a number of steps, such as choosing the best digital marketing techniques and solar advertising, as well as understanding your brand and audience. A strong social media presence is a great way to connect with the people your business needs to reach, from building brand trust to demonstrating that there is a solution to people’s high energy bills.
You can use social media to find people who are interested in solar, whether they are doing so to save money on their electricity bills, the environment, or both.
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