Perhaps the funniest moment of the classic mockumentary/rockumentary film This is Spinal Tap is when Nigel Tufnel, one of the band members, shows off the band’s amplifier. He explains how his amp is “special” because it goes to 11. If you don’t remember that scene, here it is again:



Let’s forget for a moment that Nigel has banged his head on one too many guitars. Instead, let’s focus on his feeling special because he owns an amp that goes beyond the standard “10” amp.

Bringing that concept back to solar marketing, most residential solar installers guarantee their workmanship for 10 years, and as we know, good solar system installs are pretty stable and last far beyond 10 years.

Consequently, if you’re looking for a way to stand out from the local competition, offering an 11 or 12-year workmanship warranty is a great solar guerrilla marketing method for many reasons.

In fact, in honor of Spinal Tap, I’ll give you 11 solar marketing reasons why an 11 or 12 year warranty is better than 10.

  1. As mentioned above, it makes your brand stand out from the competition.SolarFred-11
  2. You give more to the customer with minimal risk, and unlike This is Spinal Tap, your 11-year promise is real, right?
  3. During your sales consultation, it builds trust with the prospect who’s concerned about putting holes in the roof.
  4. It cements a longer (1 to 2 year) business relationship that allows you to receive more referrals.
  5. It may help to close the sale if the customer has received competitively priced (or lower) quotes.
  6. Can’t think of anything to blog about? Write a post about your free extended warranty.
  7. It’s a great benefit to use in any print or direct mail advertising.
  8. It can be highlighted on the front of your brochures.
  9. It’s a subject that you can address in a you-tube video, showing all the reasons why you’re so confident that your service will last 11 years and beyond.
  10. It can be highlighted on your website, instantly giving website visitors an extra level of trust. “Service You Can Trust with one of the Longest Warranties in the Solar Business.”
  11. It’s a gut-check for your skills/or company. If you really need to stop at 10 years, ask yourself why. What are you afraid of? Whatever that is, address that fear with training, people, or using better products.

Of course, solar leasing companies have a parts and service contract warranty that lasts 20 years—including the inverter, BOS, etc. So, that’s yet another reason (#12) why offering a longer-than-standard workmanship warranty (plus highlighting the long-term ownership savings), can help your solar company compete with the leasing companies.

So, perhaps Nigel had something there: An 11-year workmanship warranty is a solar guerrilla marketing way… to UnThink Solar. (Next week, we’ll discuss the solar marketing answer to the ultimate question of life, the universe, and everything.)