This webinar was originally broadcast on Wednesday, December 7, 2016.
Click here to watch On Demand.
The solar market is growing exponentially, presenting both opportunities and challenges for smaller solar businesses, who must compete with the large, national brands entering their markets. Although taking on the big guys can seem daunting, it’s important to keep in mind that in every instance, and in every market, there are small businesses that survive, and in many cases even thrive, in the face of competition from large national brands and retailers. What is it about these companies that allows them to succeed where many fail, and how can you prepare your business to be one of these success stories? The secret is a strategic, well-developed marketing plan that will help you grow your business, reach the right customers, and give you a competitive edge in your area.
What Participants Will Learn:
- Where the solar market stands: what are consumers looking for?
- Dealer marketing basics: how to position yourself for marketing success
- Real-life marketing strategies from a successful solar dealer
Aaron James, VP, Network Partnerships, EnergySage
Aaron James is the VP of Network Partnerships at EnergySage, an online marketplace for solar energy, where he manages the company’s national installer network and marketplace customer service. With the support of two SunShot awards from the US Department of Energy, EnergySage has built the industry’s first comparison shopping platform for solar shoppers. By enabling apples-to-apples comparisons across equipment, financing, and installation, EnergySage expedites the shopping process for both buyers and sellers of solar PV systems.
Aaron’s background prior to EnergySage includes project finance for clean energy investments and program design for distributed energy investment platforms. He’s passionate about opportunities to mainstream renewable energy, and serves as a mentor for the Cleantech Open. Aaron completed his MBA and MS in Sustainable Systems at the University of Michigan.
Glenna Wiseman, Principal, Identity3
Glenna Wiseman is a solar industry marketing veteran who brings the installer’s point of view to marketing communications. Her solar marketing expertise dates from 2007. For five of those years, she led the marketing initiatives for a California based solar installation firm. Glenna has built integration companies for more than 10 years, resulting in a holistic and enterprise-level perspective on marketing for solar installers.
As founder and principal of Identity3, she has delivered vibrant marketing for firms at every stage of the solar supply chain, nationally and internationally. Through an Energy Trust of Oregon soft cost reduction initiative she created the “Build it Bright, Crafting Your Solar Marketing Program” series for installers now featured on HeatSpring, an educational platform serving 47,000 visitors monthly.
Glenna is a recognized writer and speaker within the industry, covering a wide range of topics, including marketing solar to women. She has been a moderator and speaker at Solar Power International and Intersolar North America.
Erik Shifflett, Partner/Co-Owner, Granite State Solar
Erik Shifflett is a partner / co-owner at Granite State Solar (GSS) based in Boscawen, NH. Erik began his professional career in the telecommunications industry where he developed over seventeen years of experience in marketing and business development. A desire to strike out into a new venture coupled with a long-simmering love of solar led Erik to take a risk and leave the corporate world nearly four years ago. After meeting his business partner (Alan Gauntt – founder of Granite State Solar in 2008), Erik and Alan found common interests and complimentary skillsets. An official 50/50 partnership was formed in January of 2015. Since then, Erik and Alan have grown GSS into to one of New Hampshire’s largest and most active integrators in the residential sector. With 20 full-time employees and two installation crews, GSS installs between six and eight complete roof and ground systems per-week.
Kathie Zipp, Moderator, Solar Power World
After graduating from Kent State University, Kathie was introduced into the world of trade journalism, specifically in the renewable energy sector. She takes what she learned from covering the wind industry into writing about the technology, installation and development of solar energy. Kathie feels grateful to be writing about solar in such an exciting time for the industry. She is inspired by the wonderful people she meets in solar, with their passion, innovation and wish to do good for the planet. Kathie also loves the opportunity she gets to travel in her career, and continues to do so in her personal time as well.