I’m an energy geek. (Isn’t admitting it the first step?) If you’re reading this, there is a good chance that you are, too.
Energy-efficiency fascinates me for a lot of reasons. I love the technical details and the underlying physics. I won’t get into them now—but it does give me something to talk about at parties. And what a thrill that is for everyone else.
That last sentence was sarcasm. And in it rests an important element of truth. Chances are that most of you customers don’t care nearly as much about energy-efficiency or energy-savings (or even ventilation rates) as you do. And they likely never will.
Yet those in the energy-efficiency world, whether industry denizen, policy wonks, or tree-huggers (I actually fit in all those categories) by and large forget that homeowners buy things for their own reasons, not our reasons.
The crux, then, is to find out what their reasons are. If we can address homeowners needs and wants, and solve their problems, we’ve got a good shot at saving energy, too. If the daughter’s bedroom is too cold all winter, and that is frustrating the homeowner, I might be able to fix that and save energy. Fixing the daughter’s cold bedroom, though, is likely to be the bigger selling point. Much bigger.
Saving energy may make you feel good. (I like it, too.) But if you want to sell improvements, you’ve got to find out what makes your customers feel good. And accept that reality that saving energy might not be anywhere near the top of that list.