2020 market development programs among PERC projects

December 9, 2019 By    

The Propane Education & Research Council (PERC) approved the following funding requests during its November meeting in Naples, Florida, with lead vendors in parentheses where applicable.

Bobtail photo by LP Gas staff

Photo by LP Gas staff

⦁ $4,250,000 for the 2020 residential consumer outreach program, primarily for the paid media buy; creative campaign assets for use by PERC and propane companies; social media; continued industry communications and engagement; and regular review of campaign analytics and performance optimization. This project is a continuation of the Propane Can Do That campaign that launched in January 2019. (Swanson Russell)

⦁ $2,140,000 for the 2020 residential construction professional integrated outreach program, with PERC using marketing, communications and engagement with construction professionals in an effort to grow users and uses of propane in American homes and increase propane’s market share in home energy use. (Swanson Russell, Hanley Wood and Newport Partners)

⦁ 2,050,000 for 2020 corporate communications, designed to increase propane’s voice in the national energy conversation through data-driven, provocative and assertive messaging. (Swanson Russell)

⦁ $1,200,000 for the 2020 autogas integrated outreach program, including efforts to increase propane industry adoption of autogas in its fleets, increase engagement with markets and industry, launch an autogas vehicle service network training program, and marketing and communications.

⦁ $1,070,000 for the 2020 material handling integrated outreach program, which includes sales channel and influencer engagement, events, and marketing and communications.

⦁ $1,040,000 for the 2020 agriculture integrated outreach program, which includes project funding (mobile ag equipment, water heat demo, greenhouse demo, grain dryer demand model), events, and marketing and communications efforts.

⦁ $905,000 for the 2020 commercial professional integrated outreach program, which focuses on engagement to help grow the specification of propane systems, with increased emphasis on new installations and retrofits, and increased engagement with construction professionals and influencers.

⦁ $605,000 for the 2020 propane sales and marketing training and HVAC/plumber training programs, which include the Can Do Conference and train-the-trainer training.

⦁ $575,000 for 2020 business development engagement and services, including market opportunity research and messaging, regulatory entity engagement and engagement in markets with growth potential.

⦁ $454,000 for 2020 industry engagement, for activities that allow PERC to engage directly with state association executives, marketers and industry partners.

⦁ $450,000 for PERC Advisory Committee and program support, covering two full committee meetings, a Safety and Technical Training Working Group meeting and a Propane Markets Summit.

⦁ $400,000 for Rocky Mountain PERC to build a propane showcase home, which will provide education and training to decision-makers during a home build or purchase. The funds to build the home are derived from state rebates.

⦁ $400,000 for a 2020 Propane Farm Incentive Program, designed to encourage agricultural producers to adopt new propane equipment.

⦁ $350,000 (change order) for 2019 Certified Employee Training Program (CETP) support, as the council approved significant, unanticipated changes to the scope of CETP training during the year.

⦁ $270,000 to transfer all CETP materials into a supported, industry-recognized software for the development of digital training on electronic and mobile platforms.

⦁ $212,696 to conduct a 2019 propane sales report, the results of which provide PERC with an equitable statistical methodology to distribute state rebates. (ICF)

⦁ $145,000 for 2020 propane market research and data analytics. (Stratas Advisors)

⦁ $63,000 for the development of a high-efficiency and low-cost Stirling engine-driven heat pump water heating system for residential and light commercial applications. The project, which would position propane as part of an energy-efficiency solution, has over $2 million in total funding from sources including the Department of Energy.

⦁ $40,000 for 2019-20 military education and propane industry recruitment, as the New England Propane Foundation, the Propane Gas Association of New England (PGANE), the New York Propane Gas Association (NYPGA) and the Veterans Education & Transition Services are partnering to put more service members into industry positions. Co-funding will be provided by a PERC workforce recruitment pilot grant, PGANE and the NYPGA.

2020 budget

PERC also approved its 2020 budget at its November meeting.

A few numbers to note: The budget provides more than $27 million for programs, about half of which will go toward communications and outreach. The program budget also is used for technology development, industry programs, and safety and training. The council plans to collect about $42 million in assessment revenue, based on an assessment rate of five-tenths of a cent per gallon on odorized propane sales. About $8.4 million is earmarked for state rebates, which make up 20 percent of the assessment collections.

Next meeting

PERC is scheduled to meet Feb. 12, 2020, in Scottsdale, Arizona.

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About the Author:

Brian Richesson is the editor in chief of LP Gas Magazine. Contact him at brichesson@northcoastmedia.net or 216-706-3748.

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