Your solar blog is the "voice" of your brand. It tells the world what your company stands for, how you deliver value to customers, and what it means to "go solar." But many solar firms don't effectively leverage their blog to help build brand awareness. Some may not have the time while others may simply feel that their blog isn't very important. We'd like to dispel some of these conceptions by articulating six ways solar blogging generates brand awareness.
Positioning the firm as an expert. The solar landscape can be a confusing one for leads and customers alike. Solar blogging is a perfect platform to present your brand as an expert in the field. Better yet, there's no shortage of compelling content that can resonate with readers. Some examples include FAQs around financing, roof modification, solar panels, interconnection agreements, and warranties. When your brand exudes expertise, readers will take notice. (Click here for a handy list of solar-related blog topics.)
Speaking directly to the prospect and customer. Effective solar blogs talk directly to the people the firm wants to reach. If your target audience is suburban families, have your blog address their "pocketbook" issues and everyday concerns, all while not sounding patronizing. Your brand is strengthened when prospects feel that it speaks to them directly.
Publishing a diverse pipeline of content. If your blog is 90% commercially oriented, visitors will be turned off. They'll rightfully view your blog as just another marketing channel. Instead, devote a majority of your posts to topics that don't pertain to a specific product or service. Again, we're thinking of things like drops in the prices of solar panels, cool articles in national magazines — like this one in Slate about the rise of rooftop panels — touting America's solar future, and other areas where you can add a bit of commentary without coming across as a salesperson.
Humanizing the brand. If your sales rep writes a cool post about five ways in which solar energy can save a Northern Californian family money, put his face front and center on the piece. Include a brief, two-line biography and provide his contact information. This approach tells readers that there's a real, live human behind the content — and your brand.
Promoting your brand. The most astute blog piece on the ramifications on changes to California's net metering laws can be meaningless if no one actually reads it. Therefore, make sure to check out the wealth of blog widgets that can help promote your content across the blogosphere. In addition to core social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, also post your content on aggregation sites like StumpleUpon and Reddit.
Touting your successes. We previously noted that a majority of your posts should focus on non-commercial topics. But notice we didn't say "all" of them. When you have a success story — say, a compelling customer testimonial — promote it loud and clear on your blog. It's one of the most effective ways to strengthen your brand.
Now we'd like your feedback. What solar blogging topics seem to resonate most with your readers? We just listed some examples on how solar blogging can boost brand awareness — what did we forget to mention? How does your team overcome blogging "writer's block?"
Need more help in making the most of your solar blog? Download our Business Blogging eBook!