NEW – ON: Propane marketing webinar participants share ideas on better communicating propane advantages

A lively and topical webinar panel discussion on marketing propane was hosted by Butane Propane News on April 7, 2022. Panellists included Joy Alafia, President & CEO, Western Propane Gas Association; Marci Ballard, General Manager, Christensen; Tucker Perkins, President & CEO, Propane Education & Research Council; and Jeff Stewart, President, Blue Star Gas.

CPA Director of Government Relations for Ontario, Marcelline Riddell attended the event along with over 300 attendees, most of whom were mid-sized marketers, in addition to some small and large marketers and industry association representatives.

Top ten takeaways for the CPA and members:

  1. Industry must do a better job of communicating with customers. Propane marketers have not effectively told the story of propane. They suffer from an identity crisis wedged between gas and fossil fuel industries and need to focus on how propane adds direct positive value to people's lives, communities, and environment. 
  2. Knowing your audience is key to advancement and growth. Propane country users' information needs differ from legislators’ and regulators’ education requirements.
  3. Focus on conventional propane attributes. There’s nothing to apologize for as it is an affordable, clean, reliable, transportable, domestic energy source.
  4. The EU’s focus on renewable propane (RP) was detrimental to conventional propane use and growth. Messaging should reflect that good old organic propane is the right fuel choice. It is continually transforming; in a few decades it could be zero or negative carbon-neutral, but the future is with us now, starting today.
  5. Digitization of business operations and customer service applications is necessary for industry growth and can contribute to better environmental outcomes.
  6. Promoting the sector among high school students is key to addressing the aging industry. Be inclusive employers. Participate in NPGA youth programs like Young Gassers and 30 Under 30.
  7. Promote the sector through community sports leagues and group sponsorships.
  8. Utilize social influencers/propane users to expand industry voice among segmented, defined audiences and amplify benefits for each.
  9. Solidify homeowner customer base. Auto propane and forklifts are peripheral to the residential customer base. We need to shepherd the next generation of propane-using homeowners, particularly those living in the country.
  10. The industry future is on spark plugs and burners not tanking and banking. Anywhere diesel is today (generators, trucks, etc.), propane should replace it. 

Access the webinar replay here.