Despite the exponential increase of solar installations in the last two years, convincing clients to convert to solar energy can still be challenging. People are held back by concerns on cost. Others just can’t quite fathom the concept of a free energy source in the sky. Does it really work? Will it really help reduce electrical bills?A solar open house can be a powerful strategy to present to clients about your solar PV systems products. Not only will they get to see the actual installation, they’ll also see how it works, and hear a real client’s testimonial.
Here are the basic steps when you plan to throw a solar open house:
Pick the Date Several Weeks Before.
It’s important to choose a date that is still far off to give you ample time to send invitations and prepare your materials. Choosing the weekends or a holiday may be considered if it means more people could to go the event.
Choose a Marketable Area.
Consider a place that is decently populated. Solar open houses would mainly attract people within and near the neighborhood. It would also be sensible to look into the residents’ paying capacity, and likelihood to go solar. Perhaps conducting a survey or looking into an existing one would help you choose a great neighborhood for your solar open house content. (Read: Want to Make More Solar Sales? Ask, Don't Tell)
Choose an Enthusiastic Host.
The host is perhaps the most important element in conducting a solar open house. First of all, it’s his property. Despite of the commission, he’s still taking the risk of opening the doors to his home. And most of all, he serves as the bridge to the other attendees. He’s the one inviting neighbors and family. He’s the one to give testimonials about the product. So choose someone who is sincere and serious about going solar for good.
Send Out the Invitations Early. Use the Social Media.
Announcing the solar open house event and informing participants way ahead of time means they can set their schedules early. To cast a “large net” for more prospects, use print ads and mails as well as social media posts.
Prepare an Impressive Presentation.
Here’s the highlight of the event so it better be good! Rehearse and rehearse. Be more educational and less sales-y. Use terms that are easily understood. Sell benefits and value, not just the product or your company. Make it a discussion where participants are free to voice their questions and concerns.
If you are able to print out their proposals right then and there, they’d even be more impressed. Bring the MODsolar software with you. You can use it with a laptop or a tablet. With just an address, you’ll be able to see the satellite image of your lead’s house and layout the panels digitally. MODsolar is very easy to use so expect fast proposal turnaround!
Invest in Impressive Marketing Materials.
Preparedness is half the battle won! When you hand out materials that are pleasing to the eye and educational, clients will respect and take your brand/company more seriously. It also feels that you’ve really put in time and effort which communicates trustworthiness.
Make a Pre-Event Inspection.
Days before AND on the day of the open house, make sure everything is ready. We know some solar panels can still work at 40 years of age, but sometimes life can be such a tease so just inspect to make sure everything is going fine.
Prepare Snacks (or Even Games)!
A solar open house may be a business meeting per se. But you can make it casual and fun, like a family afternoon barbecue. When people are relaxed, they will be more receptive.
(Read: 4 Ways to Close Solar Sales)
Get the Guests to Log In.
It may be old school, but people in these situations will be more open about their contact details rather than asking them for it online or over the phone. You’ve got ways now to keep in touch with potential clients.
It may take some time and effort to organize, but throwing a solar open house is a great opportunity to reach out to your community and potential clients. Be prepared and make sure you’ll give your best presentation because you may never get the chance again to sit and convince the same set of people!