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ElectricalTrends is a communications vehicle offered to the electrical distribution industry by Allen Ray Associates and Channel Marketing Group. The purpose of ElectricalTrends is to share Allen Ray Associates' and Channel Marketing Group's insights on industry trends, observations on industry activities and issues and offer ideas that may benefit industry participants in their endeavor to improve their businesses in the areas of growth and profitability.

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Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The Energy Efficiency Breeze

The energy efficiency topic, and opportunity, is never far when discussing the economy and the electrical industry.  And the news, and outreach endeavors by distributors and manufacturers, continues.  In some instances it is about identifying ways to generate revenue, in others it is about reducing costs and being environmentally sensitive.

Witness
  • Yesterday President Obama spoke at Carnegie-Mellon (yes, one of my alma maters) and touched on the need “to aggressively accelerate” its transition from oil to alternative sources of energy."  He also mentioned the need to continue investing in R&D as well as utilize natural gas and invest in nuclear.
  • WESCO's Energy Summits will now have a Gexpro to compete against.  Gexpro announced that it has conducted three so far this year and has at least two more planned.  While some independents have also held similar seminars, the national chains typically target larger accounts to attend.  If you are an independent actively seeking to be your area's "energy efficiency resource (or supplier of choice)", aggressively marketing yourself and investing in marketing is critical to achieving success (and yes it is a long-term sale and requires commitment  to the process.)
  • According to an article that Joe Salimando wrote for NECA, 8 electrical distributors plus Grainger exhibited at WindPower 2010.  At least 5 electrical contractors also exhibited.  Companies like Thomas & Betts and Erico also exhibited.  The article shares some of Joe's insights on the wind opportunity (and he'll probably write a little more in TED but it's good to read what he writes to contractors).  The key point ... another alternative energy opportunity, albeit a niche market for many people (but there will also be MRO opportunities for distributors).
  • And just because we "sell" energy efficiency products doesn't mean we can't use some help.  Leviton recently worked with the Long Island Power Authority to become more efficient and in the process will save $116,000 annually
People ask us "how many electrical distributors are proactively involved in the energy efficiency market?"  The challenge in answering the question is defining "proactively".  What do you think defines a distributor who is proactively in the energy efficiency business ... what does a distributor need to offer other than bidding projects?  Let us know and we'll post the results.

ElectricalTrends Updates

Over the past few days we've made some enhancements to ElectricalTrends.  We've
  • Added functionality on the home page so you can see the most recent comments
  • Courtesy of Egret Consulting, we've added a number of new career openings on the Career page, and we've highlighted some of the openings on all of the pages.
    • And if you have a job opening you'd like us to post, email us with a brief description and contact information.
    • Looking for a job, email us your resume and we'll upload it to help you try to get a job, just like we did for an experienced sales management individual looking for a role with a manufacturer.
  • We've added some new, free, research on marketing to engineers as well as have highlighted our research reports on all of the pages.
Tell us what else you'd like on the site and we'll see what we can do (with our limited technical abilities!!)

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