Here at UtilityAPI, we are lucky to have an awesome staff that love what they do, and we are here to help you make the most of our platform. Our account manager Rob Zakim put together the following list of talk tracks and tips to help you in your conversations with utility account holders. Our software is designed to be easy and straightforward to use, and it never hurts to have some inside tips from someone who used us on a daily basis to help get folks solar.
Here are Rob's tips from his previous role as a sales/energy consultant.
1) Have your consultants walk the customers through the form over the phone. "Do you have an online account with your utility? Great! I am sending you an email, it will say 'Request For Sharing Utility Data.' This is the quickest and easiest way for me to gather your utility information. Go ahead and open the email, click 'Share My Utility Data,' and fill out the form. I'll hang on the line in case you have any questions!"
If you're in person with the customer, simply click "Get Data" at the top of your dashboard and then click on your own personalized link next to "Your Link" on the following page. This will open up the authorization form and you can pass your laptop/tablet over to the customer to fill in their credentials.
2) It's never a bad idea for your consultants to share the fact that Utility API has received two SunShot Award grants from the Department of Energy and are backed by them. The customer has the ability to revoke your access to their meters at any time, should they choose, on their authorization receipt.
3) The customer is authorizing you to see their historical data, NOT access their personal online account. Everything is protected by, and actually goes beyond, the Department of Energy's DataGuard standard. See here: https://site.utilityapi.
This information is not aggregated or sold. Nobody sees the login information they type in to share their data. This is the biggest objection by customers: they think your consultants can see this and they can't.
Another line I'd use: "Even if I could see your online credentials, which I can't, the worst thing I could do is pay your bill for you."
4) If your consultants screen share with customers, sometimes I'll show them exactly what was uploaded (a PDF of their recent bill and .CSV file showing historical kwh). This builds trust between your consultant and the consumer and also gives a sense of how quickly the process can move along.
Got some tips you want to share? Have more questions? Let us know!