New name planned for Green Deal as part of major rebrand

What we all know as ‘Green Deal’ is set to change later this year after the GDFC’s CEO Kilian Pender has announced a name change and that the current brand is ‘tarnished’. It is all part of a major rebrand that is taking place with the help of marketing heavyweights Saatchi and Saatchi.

The rebranding is about moving away from the previous style of Green Deal, which was cut short after it failed to hit targets. Instead of focusing on energy efficiency language and terminology, which can often make it hard to engage with homeowners, it is now more focused on communicating with potential customers about making peoples homes a more pleasant place to be.

Killian Pender said “Getting people engaged with energy efficiency is quite challenging, but getting people engaged with making their home a nicer, warmer place to live – that is a message which resonates very well with consumers, that is something that customers really like. So rather than couching the language in energy efficiency, the language and the branding we are focused on is about making your home a nicer, warmer place to live.”

One of the findings of the National Audit Office (NAO) after it investigated the Government run Green Deal was that a critical reason for the lower than expected uptake was due to the GDFC not getting a clear message across to householders about the potential benefit of making these improvements. It seems like Pender is tackling this issue head on with a totally different marketing strategy.

The GDFC is currently 87% of the way to reaching its £4million funding target through Abundance Investments. The cash injection will be used to fund the rebranding as well as improving its IT systems. We can expect the new name to be revealed this Autumn.

 

17 comments

  1. Instead of messing around with all this promotion and wasting money on trying to get the message across why don’t they just subsidise the initial cost of eligible energy saving appliances. This was very successful a few years back when rolls of roof insulation were subsidised down to a pound a roll. No money wasted on marketing or admin all money passed directly on to the public through savings. I ask you for example how much is it going to cost for a firm like Saatchi and Saatchi to come up with a new name? Half a million plus already taken from the budget? This is why we in the industry don’t bother supporting this type of thing the majority of the money never helps who it is supposed to. We see the same thing every couple of years and the only people who seem to benefit are the administrators.

  2. Quite agree with Mr W. There was a simple scheme before where cavity wall and loft insulation installations were subsidised without all this fuss. Green Deal failed because, after survey, no-one wanted to pay extortionate costs for installations and extortionate interest rates afterwards. AND. I bet that house sales might become more problematic because of the existence of a Green Deal – just like the (different) problems with leased solar panels on roofs. Remember the old saying KISS – “Keep it simple, stupid.”

  3. No new taxes by any name ‘subsidies’ etc. We need to let the market do this, nice warmer homes wins. I did EWI surveying, the look and feel triumphed over energy efficiency every time on top of concrete and old ugly bricks. People did not really get the energy efficiency bit as a clever type argument ever. That only sold because of subsidies and the criminal labour (but others used same arguments) government directed hike in energy bills for all called ECO, where the poor bill payer subsidised the wealthy and those looked after by the state as usual.

    1. Not sure I entirely agree. EWI is perhaps not the best example to make a statement like “the look and feel triumphed over energy efficiency every time”. Don’t think that’s universally true. Yes people do buy and live in houses they are happy with the look and feel of, even regardless of it’s efficiency shortcomings. But that doesn’t mean they don’t want that home to be more energy efficient and them benefit from lower bills. That’s why plenty of newly bought low EPC rated homes go on to receive more loft insulation, new boilers etc. etc. The smarter buyers factor in any efficiency short comings into the asking price and get things upgraded fairly quickly. EWI will be less popular because the payback is so long. Other more cost effective measures will take priority, but even then a cost effective way of doing it has to be available and I don’t think the Green Deal cuts the mustard.
      In fact I’d even venture to say without significant subsidy EWI and IWI is always going to be a hard sell on the basis of both looks and economics.

  4. Millions wasted on rebranding when ‘whitewash’ probably more appropriate.
    It was complicated before, now its off the radar… ‘homes more pleasant place to be’?!? Is this an energy industry initiative or should we plant a few flowers and get a couple tins of paint out?
    Why do I get the feeling that this is sunk before its off the slipway?!!!

  5. The Green Deal was a great idea, just badly administered and sold, as another Government initiative. It needs a marketing company to drive the message and win hearts and minds. Who wouldn’t want to reduce their energy bills, especially if incentivised to do so. How many DEAs are told by the resident that they had CWI and/or loft insulation, because ‘it was free’. The Green Deal (or whatever replaces it) has landlord written all over it – shiny new boiler and the tenant pays, via the electric meter.

    1. Agree with subsidies for insulation but why bother? Joe Public has zero interest in insulation anyway!. Yet they keep on polishing this turd lol.
      Find something that will be popular instead of done to death product.

    2. Think the Green Deal was a good idea exceptionally badly thought out and no amount of marketing is going to win the hearts and minds of anyone other than the arithmetically challenged. Yes of course “who wouldn’t want to reduce their energy bills”? But with the Green deal, inflated installation costs and 9% interest that’s one thing that just won’t be happening. They’ve even already said they’re aiming for a “cost neutral outcome”. That’s not good enough people want “efficiency” savings or why bother? And they won’t. We need a significantly different Green Deal if this latest incarnation is to succeed.
      I agree with you about landlords though. I can see the attraction of getting a tenant already paying you rent to also pay to upgrade your property. Cannot say however that I approve or think that very fair.

  6. Geendeal was just an expensive way to borrow money, unless the loans are at a sensible APR and without the front loaded costs, it will not work. Whatever you want to call a white elephant, its still a white elephant!

    1. Completely agree, Devise a scheme with interest free loans and no inflated installation cost and you might have the starting point of a successful way to get UK housing stock upgraded. I would also go on to insist landlords pay themselves to upgrade their rental properties rather than getting a tenant to pay to upgrade a property they don’t own. That always seemed grossly unfair to me. I’d also set minimum EPC rating for rentals higher than those in the pipeline, which I believe is an “E” band rating. An “E” band rating really isn’t very good news for a tenant already paying ever increasing levels of rent. I’d say “D” is a more appropriate level.

  7. After 7 years as a DEA, my experience in talking to homeowners is that the main questions for them are: how much will it cost, how long is it good for and how will it improve my home lifestyle? The GDHIF (Green Deal Home Improvement Fund) was excellent, I could have done those surveys (basically it was the GD Scheme version 2), all year long, every year. Even though people paid 50% of the install cost, they got the reason for the improvement !! They saw the common sense in it !! They saw the value in it !!! Are we in the Green Technology Renewables Industry or the Psycho-babble sales industry. GD version 1 failed because it was expensive loans and complicated etc. The new GD version 3 is GD version 1 with a new name and will be seen as no different by the general public. Why are we reinforcing failure ? GD or whatever is dead. We need a new common sense scheme !!

  8. The Green Deal re-branded by Saatchi and Saatchi?? Whoever thought that one up needs to change their medication. Re-brand a donkey a racing thoroughbred and it still won’t win any races. The problem with the Green Deal wasn’t the name it was that it was an ill conceived scheme which failed before and will fail again. It is simply not a good deal. As far as i can see nothing has been changed to address the shortcomings but the interest rate is even higher than before.
    The sales ploy seems to be to promote “nicer warmer homes” rather than bill savings. Well good luck with that, everyone but everyone I speak to is far more focused on getting their bills down. Yes of course they want nicer “warmer homes” but they don’t want approved installer inflated prices and 9% interest resulting in them stumping up even more cash on their energy bills. They want to see more efficient nicer warmer homes and lower bills. After all isn’t that what “more efficient is supposed to mean?
    The old “golden rule” was never guaranteed for good reason it seldom if ever happened that way. Customers were always out of pocket. In the extreme many will find they need another new boiler well before they’ve paid for the Green Deal installed one is paid for and they’ll have saved no money. That “nicer warmer home won’t sound” such a good idea then will it?
    I agree with other comments in that if the plan is to upgrade the efficiency of UK housing stock the only way real progress will be made is through subsidised schemes similar to those scrapped in favour of the Green Deal or whatever the new name will be.
    What puzzles me most is that someone seems to think you can take the very same failed scheme, change nothing but the name, increase the interest rate and a give it a marketing make over and it will succeed? Think again.
    The only people standing to do well out of this folly are the trainers who suck the gullible into going for GDA training.

  9. 9% interested and greatly inflated installation costs (Green Deal Installers are just about the most dishonest bunch of rogues I have ever come across). A truly terrible deal if ever I saw one.

    However, I bet greedy landlords will love the prospect of improving their properties and getting the tenant to pay for it whilst probably getting ‘kick back’ from the Green Deal Installer at the same time.

    Am I cynical? After nine year in this business, you bet I am!

    The last Green Deal Installer I worked for offered cheap (Ideal or Ferroli) replacement combi boilers for £2500 when he had a deal with local gas safe registered installer to supply and fit them for £1200 all in. More than 100% profit for processing some paper work is not bad work if you can get it.

  10. Green deal? How’s about Green Tax Credits.
    We seem hell bent in this country on giving people working and child tax credits.
    Give them Green Tax Credits for installing energy efficiency measures, saving money on their bills, lowering their carbon footprint.
    Make it broad to incentivise the landlord and the tenant.
    We seem to love the “big government” model. So role with it!!
    People on benefits and those working prosper by being more energy efficient, by changing behaviour habits. Landlords invest the cash and get money back through the savings.
    Thus saving the cash on the Kyoto fines for not hitting carbon targets.

    Just an idea. Needs fine tuning. But the beloved “experts” have to start thinking outside the box.

  11. Ridiculous waste of money. Contradictory advice based on whether looking for Carbon Reduction (which consumers dont understand) or Energy Efficiency (which they do). The Government need to promote Energy Efficiency and not Carbon Reduction. What we MUST achieve is that the Government dont force us to retrain, charge us £1500.00 in order to tick about 3 boxes and then drop the scheme 6 months later!!

  12. Basically, GD was about the politicians wanting to save capital expenditure building power stations. I don’t think they ever thought through the concept of making the GD attractive enough for householders to want it. If the Saatchis are worth their salt, they will spot the flaws in the concept and sort it out with their mates in government. Tickling with a new name and a smart new, expensively designed logo will never fix it.

  13. The Green Deal has always suffered from being to confusing to the average homeowner, and no amount of clever marketing will fix that. People want simplicity. They want to install solar PV and receive a good Feed in Tariff for generating thier own green electricity. Perhaps the government should stop slashing the incentives people care about and give homeowners a simple solution that they want.

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