Knowledge is power: Gain competitive edge at national propane show

March 1, 2009 By and    

The NPGA Southeastern Convention & International Propane Expo will be held April 4-6 at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta. The event is an international trade show and education conference for propane industry members to network, explore and learn.

Propane Expo is the only national event for the propane industry, and you owe it to yourself and your key employees to be there. Find out more at

Duty to warn
Because I am the chairman of the NPGA Conventions Committee, you may think my enthusiasm for this venue is shamelessly biased. I counter with my belief that the marketing of propane is quickly becoming so challenging that education is the only way our industry can expect to advance.

We need to consider forming an education foundation to fund a professional designation program with continuing education requirements for industry members. That is the only way we are going to have the disciplined knowledge to keep pace with the changing energy world in which we live. In the meantime, come to Atlanta and learn what’s new and how you can apply it in your day-to-day business.

Even with a normally cold winter, many propane retailers are still facing a U.S. economy that is reeling. Factories are closing or cutting back production, customers are unemployed or underemployed and struggling to pay their bills. The home-building industry is near standstill, and a green energy economy is quickly emerging.

You could get depressed having to constantly react to these challenges, or you can explore and educate yourself so you can develop a new business strategy with winning, new solutions.

Products and services
The industry’s leading suppliers, manufacturers and service providers will fill the exhibit hall with the world’s largest array of propane-related products and services.

Do you know all you need to know about tankless water heaters? If not, several leading manufacturers will be on hand. Remember, the electric industry does not have an answer to the gas tankless water heater.

Do you want to learn about a new propane-fueled heating technology that allows homeowners to generate their own electricity? Come to the Propane Expo and check out the freewatt systems from ECR International and other emerging technologies being showcased at its Innovation Pavilion. Atlanta also offers answers to those facing renewable energy and geothermal challenges in their marketplace.

Get educated
The education program held in conjunction with the Propane Expo is geared toward all segments of the propane industry.

We are looking to the future with featured speaker Ron Jones, a pioneer in the green building movement. Ron will give us a background on climate change and tell us why propane’s versatility, reliability and efficiency make it one of the fastest-growing energy choices for home builders in the green building industry. Green building is a multi-billion dollar market that can lead the building industry out of the recession. Come discover how propane innovations can energize this segment of the home-building industry.

Other education session topics include customer service, propane litigation, business financing, price hedging, propane inventory management, green business practices and Web site and online services development. Fast-track sessions in the exhibit hall are geared toward technical and regulatory training. They include learning how to survive a DOT audit, an overview of regulatory requirements associated with jurisdictional pipeline systems and how to market to your customers through the use of Propane Education & Research Council resources.

Come to Atlanta and find out how you can become part of the green energy economy and a solution to climate change and energy security. Many of your propane competitors will be at the Propane Expo learning about the roles they will play in our energy future. You and your key associates need to be there too.

This month’s book on my night stand is “Green to Gold” by Daniel Esty and Andrew Winston. It looks at how companies use environmental strategy to innovate, create value and build a competitive advantage. LPG

Tom Jaenicke is the owner and president of ATomiK Creative Solutions LLC, a company that provides marketing, consumer education and business development consulting, primarily to the propane industry. He can be reached at 810-252-7855 or

Comments are currently closed.