We take a look at six digital marketing trends that are perfect for solar dealers to consider in their 2019 advertising strategies.
Video is an effective way to grab attention across any of the social platforms – paid or unpaid. You can test a 20-30 second video on your main Facebook page, for example, and if it starts to get traction you can boost the post to reach a wider audience. If there’s budget, you can use paid platforms to further hone in your audience and reach more customers.
Video is so easy to manage these days now that everyone has a smart phone. You can interview customers, staff, or film an installation that can uploaded to a social platform in seconds. Gone are the days of a polished, expensive video to attract leads. These days it’s the original, authentic videos that end up going viral.
Paid Facebook advertising is not new, but they are introducing new features all the time. Audience targeting has come a long way. If you have a budget allocated for paid advertising, it’s worth testing a lead generation campaign on Facebook, targeting key areas. The platform offers a lower cost per lead (in most cases) than other paid channels.
3. Marketing Automation
If you’re not already using a marketing automation system to manage leads then it’s time to investigate it. The goal of marketing automation is that it takes care of repetitive tasks and frees up resources.
Imagine this: someone fills in a form and downloads your solar ebook. The leads details are automatically populated into your CRM. The lead then starts receiving friendly automated email messages about solar tips and advice. These emails keep the lead warm, nurturing them along the buyer journey until they’re ready to request a quote. You don’t have to follow up straight away, they’re already in the sales funnel.
4. Voice Search
There are some pretty grand predictions on the future of voice search – so it’s a trend to watch and learn. Currently most searches are conducted via typing. However it’s predicted that half of all searches in 2020 will be via a voice command.
The uptake is being fuelled by users who like fast connections. It takes a person 40 words per minute to type a search, whereas a person can speak up to 150 words per minute. Hence, it takes less effort and is a more specific search query.
What does this mean for solar dealers?
It means that with voice search being used via mobiles, or smart devices of any kind, you’ll need to make sure your website is optimised for voice. If you’re currently utilising SEO best practices then you might not have to change too much at all. Voice search will affect things like:
- long tail keywords in your Google Ads campaigns
- My Business Listing
- scheme metadata
- optimising for other search engines – not just Google.
If you’re unsure about what a Chatbot is, think of Siri. Siri is an AI chatbot designed to interact like a human. Chatbots have limitations, but there have been huge developments in this offering over the last few years.
Chatbots are designed to take the burden off repetitive tasks and interact with your customer in a helpful way. It could:
- give an explanation of how solar works
- lead a customer to request a quote
- find the best installer in the searcher’s area.
Solar dealers might consider a Chatbot to receive and respond to messages from their website chat window, SMS text, or social messaging services (Messenger, Facebook, Twitter).
6. Authentic Reviews
Customer authenticity and recommendations are valued highly. Encourage your customers to leave a review on your Facebook page, website or Google review. Most people are aware now of the ‘family and friends’ bandwagon who support your business even though they’ve never made a purchase. Potential customers are smart and will see through it. Be genuine, be authentic and encourage existing customers to review your workmanship.