As a solar installer, lead-generation is an important part of growing your business. While two popular ways to generate leads are cold calling and knocking on doors, if you’ve ever done either, you know how exhausting, time-consuming and soul-crushing such methods can be. They are also not the most effective ways of generating leads.
Why bother with the people that have no interest in solar panels, when there are customers out there actively seeking someone like you to install solar on their roofs? Here’s how you can get solar leads easily.
In the age of digital marketing, it is easier than ever before to find your customers. You don’t even have to leave the comfort of your home to get solar leads! Here are simple ways to harness the power of the internet to grow your solar install business.
1. Organic (FREE) Marketing
Do you have a website? If yes, great. If not, get one set up as soon as possible. Your website can play an important part in reaching highly interested customers.
A lot of solar installers don’t take full advantage of what their website can achieve. A website is not just an online business card. Here’s a checklist of what your website should have if you’re looking to generate leads:
✔️ A form for customer to fill out with their information so you can follow up with them.
✔️ What type of solar installations you do (is it just residential homes, or do you do commercial work as well?) Make it be known.
✔️ Location. Where do you do solar installations? Is it just that one city or do you cover three states? Make sure you have location related keywords on your website to pop up in search results in case someone searches “solar installers near San Jose, CA”.
✔️ What have your previous customers said about you? Testimonials are great to have to show that other people have worked with you previously and had an incredible experience.
✔️ This is where the magic happens: helpful content. This will play a key role in you showing up for Google searches when a highly engaged potential customer is looking for information about hiring an installer or just searching for information about solar.
2. Content Marketing
To dive deeper into content marketing, it’s about figuring out what your prospective customer is searching regarding solar online and creating content that helps answer their questions. By selecting highly relevant keyword phrases and creating useful blog posts or web pages, you’ll rank higher in search engine results and your prospective customers will wind up on your website.
The buyer journey can take a while. Say John searches “how much can I save with solar” in Google and lands on your website because you wrote a helpful article on how someone can determine the savings of going solar. He might not be looking for an installer yet, but he’ll recognize you when he searches “solar installers in Los Angeles” three months later and you pop up in the results. He might then click on your site, and either fill out your lead follow-up form or give you a call requesting a quote.
If you have multiple web pages on your website that are both helpful and relevant, your chances of appearing in front of your customers increases. To track this traffic you can utilize Google Analytics which will notify you which pages have been getting the most amount of traffic.
3. Social Media
Do you have a Facebook page? YouTube? What about Twitter and Instagram? Nowadays pretty much everyone and their grandma is on social media; so you can bet your customers are online too. The list of social media goes on for miles on end, so pick the ones that would be relevant to solar prospective customers and start engaging with them online.
What will you post on social media as a solar installer? Remember all your work on your website and the helpful content you wrote? It now gets to really shine! Share your customer testimonials, photos of solar installations you have done, and tips potential solar customers would find helpful in their journey to go solar. Make the majority of your posts helpful and interesting content; don’t only post salesy posts. For example, you could make a YouTube video showcasing you doing an installation, as you give valuable feedback on best practices and what customers should look for in a good solar installer. It’s a great way to show off your skills and make customers feel more confident in having you install solar on their roof.
While it’s best to not spread yourself too thin by trying to juggle actively maintaining every known social media profile on the web, it might still be a good idea to at least secure the usernames of your solar business, so no one else can.
4. Paid Online Marketing
There’s a variety of ways of targeting customers using Google Ads, Bing Ads, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter; the list could go on forever. However, if you’re just starting out, Google and Facebook advertising would work best.
The benefit of digital advertising over traditional advertising such as print, is that you can easily track how effective your efforts were and it is often cheaper (as long as you don’t make these costly mistakes).
There’s a variety of free online classes provided teaching you how to use these paid online marketing mediums. If you prefer an agency to take over the handling of your paid marketing, I would recommend that you have at least the basics down, so if something is off, in the management of your accounts, you’ll know.