Email marketing is a valuable tool for any business, especially those with a long sales cycle. As potential customers assess their solar installation options, email is a great way to stay front of mind and provide helpful answers to questions.
The goal of gathering contacts and writing all this email content is to generate and nurture quality leads towards a sale. To truly make email a lead generation tool, it helps to adopt best practices and proven tactics. In this post, we’ll cover a few of those tactics to help invigorate your email strategy.
Just the Basics
Before we get to the three essentials, let’s first discuss email marketing basics all companies need to be successful:
- A form to collect contacts (email addresses) on your website.
- A central location to keep all emails organized (such as a spreadsheet or CRM)
- A consistent format for gathering leads both online and offline (First name, last name, email, phone, etc.).
- An email tool for managing contacts, creating and sending emails, such as ActiveCampaign.
While content is the key to conversions, having these tools and clean contact lists will save you a lot of time. A good email management platform also makes it easy to create professional-looking email designs and templates, saving you tons of time.
Now let’s get to our top three email tactics for solar companies–and all our clients.
The average person receives 120 emails a day and spends about 2.6 hours reading them (or only a portion of them). That’s a lot of competition! So how does your solar company’s emails break through?
Give your readers what they’re looking for–useful information!
Start by answering common questions people often ask at the beginning of the rooftop solar research process. Next, address the pain points toward the end of the sales cycle. And because the solar industry is changing all the time, provide updates and advice on the best time to buy.
Ecohouse Solar, an Ohio-based solar installation company, said they launched its email marketing strategy by providing industry updates.
“In the beginning, they would send emails once a year with an update on what’s happening in the industry,” People found it helpful and it reminded them they were available. “Every time we did that, we would get some sales. And although you don’t want to send out stuff that’s irrelevant, It has to have valuable information the people want to read.”
Every piece of marketing should reflect who you are as a company. Maintaining authenticity, especially when you’re trying to sell something, can sometimes be a challenge.
Talking about the people who work at the company is always a great way to build trust and create an authentic human connection. Highlight an installer of the month or an office staffer who is raising money for cancer research. Show examples of your work and interview employees about a challenging install, or highlight a customer’s experience when a staffer went above and beyond.
Whether you keep it strictly professional, or decide to have some fun with it, make sure your content truly reflects your company.
How often should you send email? How long should they be? Is there such a thing as too many emails?
While these are all great questions, they aren’t the first question you should ask. Instead start with, “How many emails do I actually have time to send?”
For Ecohouse, they started with one a year. Anyone can do that! Then as they grew, they shifted to a monthly newsletter. Another very attainable goal. By including updates on industry news and a few practical tips, like how to keep squirrels from nesting in solar panels, they were answering common questions from potential customers and helping past customers maintain their investment.
Making email marketing part of someone’s job description also helps maintain consistency.
“To do it right it requires someone inside the company to own it,” said Ecohouse.
Be Thoughtful About the CTA
Before you click “send,” pause and consider. Why am I sending this?
Sure you want more sales. But is there something meaningful in the email that prompts the reader to reach out?
Having a single, direct and succinct call-to-action within the email shows people what they should do next and helps increase click rates. According to Campaign Monitor, emails with a single CTA receive 371% more clicks compared to those with multiple calls to action.
Whether it’s better CTAs, better email design, or just being consistent, all companies could use a little help with their email from time to time. Leaning on proven strategies like these is a fairly easy way to get your email marketing strategy back on track.