Image Commercially Licensed From: Unsplash
Solar Exclusive Founder Rich Feola had already experienced the biggest pain point in solar power sales when selling door-to-door in his 20s. He noticed that homes that were supposed to be ‘warm’ leads provided by a marketing company, often already had solar services, didn’t want them, or didn’t even live at the address anymore.
‘Why weren’t any above-board solar marketing companies providing truly exclusive leads?’ he asked himself.
It took him nearly a decade— and the help of exclusive teams at YouTube and Google — to solve the problem completely and cause a revolution within his industry.
Feola founded Solar Exclusive to be the top solar marketing firm that provides truly exclusive, regional leads. To date, they’ve delivered more than two million leads to 2,500 clients across 286 markets. And the solar companies he works with appreciate it — Solar Exclusive is an eight-figure-earning digital marketing firm that brings in $4 million in revenue each month.
The firm’s clients include solar sales companies, installation firms, and organizations, including independent operators.
“Everything we do is in an exclusive nature. It’s very common for solar lead companies to resell leads — the leads get repeated, and they get called by multiple solar companies, making companies have to drive their prices far too low because there are too many people competing, but not us,” Feola said.
Seeing the Light
For those not familiar with the solar industry, almost all sales begin with a marketing company that provides leads generated in numerous ways. This is because the solar companies are direct sellers, often without brick-and-mortar stores that would-be customers can visit.
Instead, they rely on teams of salespeople — on the phone and door-to-door — to make sales. And since the sales, installation, and servicing of solar power equipment is niche, they work from lists of warm leads provided by a slew of solar marketing companies across the country.
The big problem is that many of these companies provide far fewer exclusive or warm leads than the lead clients to believe. The reason is that some of the most well known choose to share their data among a buyer’s competitors,rather than provide exclusive leads.
Feola set out to change that by figuring out how to provide high-quality digital marketing services — including lead generation, follow-up, and appointment setting — to the entire industry.
Feola is proud of his above-board practices and data-driven methodology and always happy to talk about how he accomplishes what he does on behalf of his clients.
When he started, he was focused on making sure the leads that Solar Exclusive provided were both exclusive and region-specific. He began his mission by collecting nearly untold amounts of online data about the industry — including how, where, and when people search for solar services and who they eventually end up contacting. YouTube and Google were two places where he placed most of his ads, collected much of his data, and generated many leads.
The data-backed leads he began producing yielded far better results than any marketing company he or his colleagues had ever encountered.
Solar Exclusive’s clients almost immediately reported a significant uptick in sales, lower marketing costs, and closing more deals while running fewer and better-targeted ads through Feola and his team.
Upon learning how he was using their data to improve his industry, YouTube and Google were impressed enough by the scientific approach that they offered unreleased strategies to him and the Solar Exclusive team. At the time, he was heading a small solar marketing firm, and the idea that these supersites wanted to assist his testing efforts was incredibly impressive.
Today, Google provides Feola with access to a dedicated team at their San Francisco campus, and they continue to give him a leg up on YouTube as well.
Working directly with two data collection giants has allowed Feola and Solar Exclusive access to information, strategies, ideas, and tools yet to be available to the public. And since Feola still has the entrepreneurial spirit he did in his 20s, he continues to improve his industry and keep Solar Exclusive the go-to name in solar digital marketing.
Solar Exclusive is known for its data-heavy methodology, but its Founder sees the organization’s real strength in the combined experience of its staff, which is over 40 people strong.
“Almost every account manager at Solar Exclusive has, at one time, been a door-to-door or phone-led solar salesperson themselves,” said Feola. “Having this background lets them truly understand the solar sales industry and its issues from the inside. That’s why I hire them. I used to do door-to-door myself and still often think about what I learned back then.”
Feola’s founder story is a truly inspiring tale that exemplifies how each of us can impact our industry with enough drive, motivation, and dedication.
About Rich Feola and Solar Exclusive
Rich Feola is the Founder of Solar Exclusive, an 8-figure marketing company that generates unique, qualified leads and appointments for solar companies across the nation. Solar Exclusive has been featured in Digital Journal, Yahoo Finance, NBC and FOX among other publications.