U.S. Women’s National Team legend Mia Hamm and her former MLB husband Nomar Garciaparra have teamed up with Yingli Engery and Verengo Solar to promote solar energy to the soccer population and general public at large via a new “Friends and Family of U.S. Soccer” program. Hamm and her husband now power their home via solar energy, and will promote the solar via radio programs and various youth soccer tournaments in key solar energy markets, including California and New york.
The main concern with solar energy for the everyday person, especially in today’s still-struggling economy, is the up-front cost to the consumer. To help people overcome this barrier to entry to the solar energy category, Hamm will be emphasizing in the radio advertisements the readily available financing options for consumers with Yingli and Verengo, as well as the positive economic, social and environmental benefits to using solar energy. As an added incentive, those customers that go solar as a result of the Mia Hamm campaign will receive an additional $250 towards their electricity savings, according to a press release.
As parents and athletes, Nomar and I are especially proud to promote solar energy because we believe a healthy environment is the most important legacy we can leave to future generations. We are pleased to reduce our own carbon footprint and utility bill, and by communicating these benefits to the broader public, we can make an even bigger impact. Our hope is that sharing insights from our own incredibly easy and rewarding solar installation will encourage families in the soccer community and beyond to go solar, too.
The solar energy system installed on their home, and their families’, will contain a combined +130 solar panels, which in total will offset over 1,110 tons of C02 during their lifetimes. That is the equivalent of planting approximately 28,000 trees.
Some might be wondering where the connection between a soccer star and a green energy company might come into play from a business perspective. Head of Marketing for Yingli America, Helena Kimball, answered that question when she explained,
As one of the most widely celebrated female athletes in the U.S., we are confident that Mia Hamm will be a fantastic spokesperson for the solar industry. Given that 4 out of 5 of the nation’s largest solar markets also top the charts for attendance at U.S. National Soccer team games, and that youth tournament attendees are predominantly eco-conscious parents and homeowners, the “Friends and Family of U.S. Soccer” is a good driver for solar adoption and awareness.
There are countless ways that consumers interact with businesses everyday, and many of them often surprise us. Understanding where your company’s products and services overlap with your consumer base is essential to a winning marketing strategy, and often times can open up doors to new opportunities that were previously not thought possible.
One of the most powerful connections a brand can make with a consumer is one of an emotional nature. If you can pull on the heartstrings of consumers in a positive manner via your messaging or experientially with your brand it will more than likely generate a positive association between that emotion and your product(s). For Yingli, Mia Hamm, and U.S. Soccer, the opportunity with solar energy lies with soccer moms and dads and playing on the message that “parents want what is best for their kids” – what could be better than leaving this earth cleaner and better than we found it? If Hamm can successfully convey that message, and if her on field performance gives any indication of her off the pitch performance Yingli America should be very confident, then it would be safe to say that we should see more and more soccer parents putting up solar panels on their homes in the near future.
About Yingli Green Energy
Yingli Green Energy Holding Company Limited (NYSE: YGE), known as “Yingli Solar,” is the world’s largest photovoltaic module manufacturer in terms of shipments. With 2,450 MW of vertically-integrated annual production capacity, Yingli Green Energy’s manufacturing covers the photovoltaic value chain from ingot casting and wafering through solar cell production and module assembly. Headquartered in Baoding, China, Yingli Green Energy has more than 20 regional subsidiaries and branch offices and has distributed more than 7,000 MW PV modules to customers worldwide.