What do degree days and marketing have in common? Marketing in the energy management industry

We’ve been working with Boss Controls, which is a Building Management Systems (BMS) business, since 2016.  In that time, we’ve been enjoying learning about the energy management industry alongside their clients within healthcare, education, leisure and hospitality, manufacturing and many more sectors. As a Chartered Marketer, I am on a CPD journey to continue to stay at the top of my game. But how much industry expertise does a marketing consultant need to continue to provide the best value within their chosen sector?

Marketing in the energy management industry

One of our brand archetypes is The Sage – our passion is understanding the truth and getting to the heart of the matter which is why we adopt an inside-out approach to everything, including our CPD accredited course: Marketing Psychology from the Inside out.

Combining marketing psychology tools with energy management practices superpowers marketing content, boosting employee and customer engagement.  This is essential to ensure the UK is on the right path to achieve net zero by 2050. Net Zero is “the point when we add no more greenhouse gases than the amount taken away” (Source: National Grid). In order to get the whole country on board to achieve Net Zero, it’s best for them also to understand the ‘purpose’ of Net Zero, which will improve engagement.

As a marketing consultant working with BMS controls businesses and energy management consultants, I understand the:

  • Challenges for BMS controls businesses
  • Economic and Environmental challenges (especially since the COVID-19 pandemic)
  • Individual KPIs for energy managers, FM managers, estate managers, finance directors
  • Internal marketing for behavioural and cultural changes required in order to meet Net Zero
  • Optimum environment for smart thinking and enhanced productivity of employees
  • Energy management legislation
  • Return on Investment (ROI) of BMS controls and remote energy management
  • New Ways of Working since COVID-19
  • Energy Metering, Monitoring and Degree Days

My most recent learning includes Energy Metering, Monitoring and Degree Days, and I am excited to share my learning of degree days and how closely it aligns with marketing your energy management business.

What are Degree Days?

While reading about Energy Metering and Monitoring in the Energy Institute’s excellent EiBI magazine, I was drawn to the terms: ‘Degree Days’, ‘Regression Analysis’ and ‘Building Base Temperature’. Does a Chartered Marketer need to understand these terms? My curiosity got the better of me and I feel liberated now that I understand how to compare energy efficiency savings between any given period. What’s more exciting is that I noticed how Degree Days can be a useful metaphor for enabling energy managers and consultants to understand the relevance of marketing to grow their businesses.

Degree Day and Marketing Metaphors and Patterns

  • In energy management, it is essential to select an accurate base building temperature. A building’s base temperature can be affected by many elements including the level of insulation, ventilation rates and internal heat gains. In marketing, it is also essential to gain accurate insights in order to establish the correct benchmark. E.g. if you are comparing the success of your marketing investment across a time period, e.g. brand reach between 2021 and 2020: Like the building base rate, brand reach will be affected by the ‘micro’ environment (within your control), e.g. your culture, company values, marketing expertise, marketing content, etc.
  • Say the optimal temperature of your building is 20ºC, you’ve decided the base rate is 17ºC because 3ºC is made from internal heat gains (free heat from occupants and electronic equipment). In marketing, you’ve decided that your ‘optimal temperature’ for business growth could be 50 phone and website enquiries per month. The internal heat gains (free heat) could be your brand reputation or 5-star customer reviews and recommendations (brand ambassadors and corporate reputation provide free marketing).
  • Degree Days are affected by outside temperature which is outside your control.  Say if the temperature is 10ºC outside, the heating degree day for that day is 7ºC which is  a lot of energy used. In marketing, the outside temperature is a metaphor for the ‘macro environment‘. Like the temperature, these are elements that you can’t control, e.g. politics, legislation, demographics, the COVID-19 pandemic. Many businesses closed causing lack of business, therefore marketing efforts may need to be increased (heating degree days) to boost the number of website enquiries (base building temperature). It is essential to keep researching the macro environment. You can learn how to do so in my CPD accredited marketing psychology course.
  • Similar to energy consumption, it’s not a fair comparison to compare website enquiries directly year-on-year because the macro environment (temperature) is sure to change. You can use the concept of degree days to measure marketing efforts. e.g. macro measurements (temperature) should be taken into consideration to give a fair comparison. Examples of macro measurements are interest rates (two consecutive quarters of negative economic growth), market indexes for the same period, political forces, the economic news, environmental news during that period.
  • Therefore, similar to energy management and base building temperature, each business is different and has different micro and macro elements plus you can only manage what you measure.
  • What are you going to do with the insights after? The real wisdom of any metering, monitoring and marketing effort only comes once you use insights to improve.

Can you see how metaphors can be used creatively to enable energy managers to better understand marketing.

Five tips to find the perfect marketer to grow your energy management business

  1. Find a Chartered marketer with knowledge of what needs to be measured in order to make a positive impact and help your clients to achieve net zero.
  2. Find a Chartered marketer who has a passion for learning and will bring fresh perspectives.
  3. Find a Chartered marketer who has values of continuous curiosity, continuous learning, creative and community and can spot patterns.
  4. Find a Chartered marketer who can transform knowledge into engaging marketing content
  5. Find a Chartered marketer with an understanding of marketing psychology from the inside out adds a competitive edge.
  • Why? Because marketing psychology tools help BMS companies, FM managers and energy managers improve their personal and business brands (remember the free internal heat gains above) making them irresistible.
  • Marketing psychology helps you understand the goals of your target audience, and will help you present your solution in way that will enable customer to understand the solution, and more importantly, how the solution will help them achieve their goals quickly and enjoyably.
  • One example of marketing psychology is Freud’s Ids, Egos and SuperEgos. In the context of BMS controls businesses, the id is responsible for wanted instant gratification and satisfying hunger, thirst, comfort. If a work employee is too hot or too cold, then their need for comfort overtakes their passion for work, resulting in lower productivity. The occupant’s ego will try to quieten down the need for comfort and avoid embarrassment, the uncomfortable occupant’s super ego will be thinking about their career progression and the needs of their employer and that the work must be done! When the occupant is uncomfortable, they might perform, but not as well. Get the picture? That’s why I’ve written the course Marketing Psychology from the Inside Out. It’s a CPD accredited course for BOCCFEPS (Business Owners, Consultants, Coaches, Freelancers, Entrepreneurs, Professionals and Students on a CPD journey).
  • See lectures and register for a free 7 day trial.
  • I hope you enjoyed this blog, call me on 07909 693172 if you’d like to chat further about your energy management business.