Getting the word out about your solar company can seem like a daunting task in today’s marketplace. Solar companies servicing a growing number of needs are popping up and disappearing at a rapid rate.

However, by being creative, sharing your story and beliefs and educating your potential customers, you’ll be sure to stand out, says Keith Cronin, founder of SunHedge, based in Kailua, Hawaii and instructor for Heatspring’s Solar Executive MBA Training.

Begin by crafting a mission statement that communicates your beliefs, he suggests.

“People want to get behind what you believe,” Cronin says. “You see this in religion, you see it in sports, you can see it throughout our society anthropologically.” A strong, relatable message will draw people to you and your company.

The truth is, people care much more about why you are selling your product than what your product is, says Cronin. Like many solar company founders, you likely began your business to improve the environment. Make your vision clear to your customer.

Next, you need an online presence and a website filled with content. “I see a lot of naked websites. You don’t know who people are and what’s behind it. When I talk to homeowners, they want to see who they are doing business with. They are parting with $30,000 or more,” says Cronin.

Ensure that your website communicates who you are. Be personal and communicate from the heart level, he suggests.

A great way to attract potential customers is to educate them. “The first part of marketing is education,” Cronin says. Give out information intended to inform your customer about the solar industry.  You can do this with a mailing list or, if you want to stand out, with direct mail, he says.

“People are getting blinded by social media; meanwhile we’re all getting less mail. Mail is direct. Wouldn’t it be great to do something different and send a postcard or pamphlet or coupon? Make it educational,” he suggests.

Once you’ve built a base of happy customers, share some testimonials. This helps build trust in you and your customers. You can start by encouraging your customers to rate their experience on online websites like Yelp, Google, and Facebook. However, sharing video and written testimonials on your website can be especially powerful.

You should also be sure to share human stories with your customers. Cronin advises, “Share little stories of struggle. We all love storytelling. Everyone understands stories of struggle. Be human. Talk about your mistakes.”

When you open up and share your vulnerabilities, people are likely to relate to your tales of trying, failing, and getting up and trying again. Post these anecdotes to your website or social media. If your customers interact in some way, be sure to respond to them.

How a customer perceives your company has less to do with the product itself and more to do with your mission statement, vision, and culture. Be honest and forthcoming with your potential customers about your goals and beliefs. Many will reward you by purchasing your product and being loyal to your company.

Interested in Learning More?

To listen to the audio from the interview, as well as links to other articles in this series, enroll in our free course How to Make the Most of Your Solar Business


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