There are quite a lot of things that a solar installer must do in order to succeed in online marketing. The first thing that they have to do is to be caught up on everything related to marketing. This is understandable since as solar installers, you’re maintaining a business, and you need to know all about online marketing to be able to do just that. Luckily, all you need to do is to follow various marketing influencers online and be the first to see their tips and tricks in online marketing.
The second important thing that you have to do is to be caught up on everything that’s happening in the solar industry. If you’re out of the loop on the industry news, then your business might suffer. After all, how will you succeed if you don’t know anything about the industry? Luckily for you, there are a lot of ways to achieve that. You can choose to follow online solar publications to read about the latest news, particularly the research findings of solar customers. If you want, you can engage with other solar professionals in solar forums as well. You can also choose to attend solar events like solar trade shows and solar conferences.
And lastly, another thing that you can do to remain updated is to follow solar influencers online.
Now you must be wondering that there are so many solar influencers out there — how will you know who to choose? To answer that question, here is a list of solar influencers that you should follow.
Solar Energy Influencers You Should Follow
Jigar Shah is the co-founder of Generate Capital, which is an investment and operating platform that builds, owns, operates, and finances infrastructure assets involving the world’s critical resources: energy, water, agriculture, and basic materials. The company’s team has decades of collective experience in financing billions of dollars of sustainable infrastructure.
Additionally, Jigar Shah is also best known as the founder of SunEdison, which is where he pioneered the “no money down solar” idea and unlocked a multi-billion-dollar solar market, thus creating the largest solar services company worldwide. Shah also joined Richard Branson in 2009 to be the first CEO of Carbon War, a global non-profit committed to supporting global entrepreneurs scale their climate solution. With this experience, he authored the book Creating Climate Change Wealth: Unlocking the Impact Economy.
LinkedIn: Jigar Shah
A veteran business journalist, editor, and audio producer, Stephen Lacey is the founder and executive producer of PostScript, which is a production firm that helps organizations make compelling audio. Aside from his work on PostScript, Lacey also has launched five shows in over 12 years, and one of his most renowned works includes his contributions to Greentech Media. It is in Greentech Media where he produces and hosts The Energy Gang and The Interchange podcasts.
LinkedIn: Stephen Lacey
Nico Johnson is the founder of the SunCast podcast which is one the best podcasts for the solar industry. He advocates clean-tech and talks about improving leadership in the solar industry. Before the SunCast podcast, he started his foray into solar when he created his own startup in 2006. And since then, he has gained a broad experience in solar project development, PV sales, and marketing. He is also responsible for developing the Sales and Marketing strategy, eventually managing territory, for Trina Solar’s expansion into Latin America in 2012. Later, he helped numerous other companies to do the same.
LinkedIn: Nico Johnson
An advocate for entrepreneurs, Yann Brandt enjoys helping others start their companies and engaging in the conversation as to how to improve solar. Solar has been a passionate career path for him, and ever since starting his first company in 2006, his primary goal is to move towards creating sustainable and efficient solar markets across the globe.
Brandt is known for his contributions to SolarWakeup.com, where he helped spread the gospel of solar, and on Conergy, where he led the North American team from development, project finance, and asset management.
LinkedIn: Yann Brandt
First and foremost an environmentalist, Finn Peacock is also an entrepreneur, an explorer, and a pioneer in his field. He is entirely committed to empowering people to reduce costs and environmental damage. That’s why he founded SolarQuotes, to begin with: to ensure that the solar industry had a go-to resource that ensured accurate, objective, easily accessible information, and realistic pricing of high-quality solar. And since its founding, SolarQuotes has helped over 300,000 Australians get quotes for solar.
Aside from this, Finn Peacock is also known to have a first-class degree in Mechatronic Engineering and professional and international industry experience. And in 2018, he published The Good Solar Guide, which became a #1 Amazon Australia’s Bestseller.
LinkedIn: Finn Peacock
Tor “Solar Fred” Valenza
Commonly known as Solar Fred, Tor Valenza has always been fascinated with the concept of using the sun to generate electricity since he was a teenager. And so, for years, he has worked as a successful writer and marketer in other fields before he combined all his skills with his solar passion to create UnThink Solar. UnThink Solar is a strategic communications firm that is dedicated to helping solar companies reach solar customers through innovative messaging, branding, and social media communications.
Aside from UnThink Solar, Solar Fred also writes for the Renewable Energy World blog and hosts solar Tweetups at SPI and Intersolar.
LinkedIn: Tor “Solar Fred” Valenza
Dan Shugar is often dubbed as the King Midas of Solar, simply because he’s turned so many ventures into gold. He is the former president of Powerlight, which is the pioneering developer acquired by SunPower back in 2006. As of right now, he is the CEO of the tracker company NEXTracker, which was sold to Flextronics for $330 million last year.
LinkedIn: Daniel Shugar
Adam Browning has been the Executive Director of Vote Solar for 15 years now. His primary job is to lead the company’s team of advocates, experts, and staff in working to bring solar to the mainstream across the United States. Because of him being a long-time leader of Vote Solar, he has been dubbed as the “Michael Jordan of solar policy.”
Prior to Vote Solar, Adam Browning spent eight years with the Environmental Protection Agency where he ran an award-winning pollution prevention program.
LinkedIn: Adam Browning
Bryan Birsic is the president and CEO of Wunder Capital, which is a financial technology company that develops and manages solar investment funds by leveraging its national partnership network, tested processes, proprietary underwriting framework, and best-in-class online investment portal. And as the president and the CEO, he leads the strategy, finance, hiring, team management, and fundraising. He also brings extensive finance and capital raising expertise to Wunder, from private equity investing at Bain & Company to financing online commercial lending companies at Village Ventures.
Aside from his finance background, Bryan Birsic has built and led several companies that bring software approaches to new markets, most notably and recently SimpleReach.
LinkedIn: Bryan Birsic
Christian Roselund started out as a journalist with a job writing about solar, but eventually, he made his way to becoming the editorial lead of PV magazine USA. Managing that project has allowed him to broaden his skill set to develop a great understanding of the business as well as the editorial side of digital publishing.
Roselund is a writer first and foremost. And with over a decade of experience in writing about the solar industry, he has become a subject area expert on multiple aspects of renewable energy, including energy policy, photovoltaic technology, and the evolving energy markets in the United States.
LinkedIn: Christian Roselund
Kendra Hubbard is committed to helping others and the environment. Because of this, she has become a solar sales professional and an advocate who drives leads and revenue through efficient prospecting and exemplary client care, improved process efficiencies and time management, and an extensive B2B network in the Renewable Energy industry.
LinkedIn: Kendra Hubbard, MBA
Varun Sivaram, Ph.D., is a physicist and Chief Technology Officer at ReNew Power Ventures, which is a multi-billion-dollar renewable energy firm that is India’s largest by installed capacity. He is also the author of the bestselling book Taming the Sun: Innovations to Harness Solar Energy and Power the Planet, and is the editor of the book Digital Decarbonization: Promoting Digital Innovations to Advance Clean Energy Systems.
In addition to that, Dr. Sivaram’s work has appeared in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Walls Street Journal, the Financial Times, Foreign Affairs, and many more. Forbes Magazine has called him one of the 30 under 30 in Law and Policy while Grist selected him as one of the top 50 leaders in sustainability and PV Magazine named him the “Hamilton of the Solar Industry.”
LinkedIn: Varum Sivaram, Ph.D.
Tom Cheyney is the man at Kiterocket (formerly known as Impress Labs), who is responsible for the solar, renewables and climate solutions content, and strategy and market intelligence. He was initially a technology and global culture journalist/blogger/consultant for over 25 years, but he eventually switched to brand, communications/PR, and creative/design sector. Additionally, he is the chief curator of SolarCurator.com, which posts hand-picked solar/storage/climate news and commentary.
LinkedIn: Tom Cheyney
Billy Parish is an environmental entrepreneur, author, and activist. He is the co-founder and CEO of Mosaic Inc., which is the largest residential solar lender in the United States. Aside from that, he also helped in the founding of the Energy Action Coalition when he dropped out of Yale University in 2002. The Energy Action Coalition was eventually renamed to Powershift Network, and it became the largest youth-led clean energy advocacy network in the world, bringing together 50 environmental and social justice groups and over 340,000 members.
Billy also played a leading role in creating the Clean Energy Corps proposal to create 5 million new green jobs in the United States. This proposal was eventually incorporated into the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act in 2009. He also helped to expand the AmeriCorps public service program so that it will include a new “Clean Energy Service Corps.”
LinkedIn: Billy Parish
Lynn Jurich is a businesswoman and investor who is the co-founder and co-CEO of Sunrun, which is a home solar power installation, financing, and leasing company headquartered in San Francisco, California. Aside from her own business, Jurich also provides capital for other business start-ups in the solar industry.
For her contributions, Lynn Jurich has been recognized by numerous media outlets. In July 2018, Fortune magazine listed her as one of the most influential people in the business who are under the age of 40. On that same year, Inc. Magazine also named her as one of the top 100 Female Founders.
LinkedIn: Lynn Jurich
Glenna Wiseman has been an executive marketing professional in the solar industry ever since 2007. Her expertise includes work with companies along the solar supply chain from manufacturers to installers, financing entities to solar O&M providers and across continents to international firms making a U.S. market entry. She has fueled growth in numerous start-ups to divisions of Fortune 500 organizations.
As of right now, Glenna Wiseman is the founding partner of Identity3, a leading women-owned communication firm that helps brand builders identify, reach, and create awareness with solar and environmentally conscious consumers.
LinkedIn: Glenna Wiseman
Susanna Murley is a communications specialist, providing support for the U.S. Department of Energy’s SunShot Initiative. Ever since July 2015, she has overseen the organization’s digital communication efforts, including the website, blogging, social media, and graphic design functions for the team.
Before becoming DOE’s communications specialist, Susanna Murley was the digital media director for the Solar Energy Industries Association. In this job, she won numerous awards, including a Gold Communicator Award from the Academy of Interactive and Visual Arts.
Aside from that, she has also managed websites at Planet Forward, Chesapeake Climate Action Network, and the Washington Area Bicyclist Association.
LinkedIn: Susanna Murley
Kelly Pickerel is the editor-in-chief of Solar Power World magazine, which is an online and bimonthly print publication that shares news and information regarding solar installation, development, and technology. She has always been involved with publishing in the solar industry since 2011. In 2014, she joined the Solar Power World staff, and she enjoys working on contractor profiles and hearing about new projects.
Her areas of focus include solar panel manufacturing, energy storage, the Contractors Corner podcast, and the development of Solar Power World’s annual Top Solar Contractor’s list.
LinkedIn: Kelly Pickerel
Rosana Francescato is a writer at Clean Coalition who spreads the gospel of renewable energy and clean-tech. She combines her passion for solar power and the community as a community solar advocate. Her advocacy began when she was on a quest to install solar on her San Francisco condo complex, and since then, it has evolved into blogging and solar analysis.
Additionally, Rosana Francescato was the Communications Director for Sunible, an online solar marketplace, and for MyDomino, an energy savings concierge service. She has also written extensively on clean energy for publications like CleanTechnica, PV Solar Report, PV magazine, and the Energy Collective.
As of right now, she’s a member of the Local Clean Energy Alliance steering committee. She also has hands-on experience installing solar with GRID Alternatives, where she’s been the top individual fundraiser for three years in a row.
LinkedIn: Rosana Francescato
Benjamin Inskeep is an energy policy consultant, researcher, analyst, advocate, strategist, and writer who is based in Indianapolis, Indiana. He works as a Research Analyst at EQ Research where he specializes in distributed solar policies and trends, including net metering and rate design issues. He also manages the RPS Navigator service and contributes to the Policy Vista Legislative, Regulatory, and General Rate Case services by monitoring and analyzing state and ISO/RTO clean energy activities.
Before joining EQ, Benjamin Inskeep worked as a Policy Analyst at N.C. Clean Energy Technology Center at N.C. State University. It is in this university where he led the 50 States of Solar quarterly report series. Aside from that, he also provided outreach and technical assistance to local governments on reducing solar soft costs through the U.S. Department of Energy’s SunShot Solar Outreach Partnership and contributed to the nationally recognized DSIRE project.
LinkedIn: Benjamin Inskeep
As solar installers, it is crucial for you to stay updated on the happenings within the solar industry. This should be easy to achieve considering that there are so many ways for you to do this. For one, you can easily follow online solar publications that publish the latest solar news and developments or engage with other solar professionals and enthusiasts in solar forums. And for another, you can also choose to attend solar trade shows and conferences, if you want to broaden your network in addition to broadening your knowledge.
But another thing that you can do to stay updated is to follow solar influencers themselves on their social media. This is also a pretty effective way to stay updated because most of the time, these solar influencers are writers themselves. They either write books, or write for trusted online magazines, or they prefer to make podcasts about solar. In other words, these solar influencers create content about solar. And their content will definitely be valuable to you as they contain information that you need as a solar installer.
So, follow as many solar influencers as you’d like. There are literally a ton of them out there, and the ones mentioned here are simply suggestions. Follow the ones mentioned here, and find more in the wide ocean of solar influencers. They will definitely be able to help you in your solar endeavours.
In the fight against the climate crisis, Willie Jiang believes that content marketing can push the energy revolution along at a faster pace. Having helped countless brands grow their organic traffic by 10X and became the CMO of SolarFeeds.com, he is sharing his insights with the solar energy industry. Read his story here