Solar Rights
Case Study

Campaign to Save California Solar

About the Campaign

At the start of 2021, the battle for the future of rooftop solar began to unfold. Utility monopolies unleashed a massive campaign to kill California’s burgeoning rooftop solar market in an attempt to keep control of the ecosystem and protect their bloated profits. The Solar Rights Alliance hired COMPETE to help them harness the power of the internet to fight back. Over the course of the campaign, which pivoted numerous times due to our successful actions, we worked together to inform decision-makers and the wider public of the threat to rooftop solar, defeating the incumbent utilities at every turn.


Sophisticated Digital “Surround Sound” targeting to reach and persuade ten key decision makers AND everyone in their lives across the internet.

Working with our data partners to enable 1:1 targeting, we deployed a Digital ads campaign that surrounded decision makers with Solar Rights Alliance’s message. We targeted not just the decision makers themselves, but everyone in their lives: their family members, their staff, their donors, their college friends, and more. By consistently updating our Digital ads for this “Surround Sound” campaign, we made sure over 22,000 individuals in the lives of our target decision makers received our message whenever they went online.

Geotargeting capitol, homes, and offices though legislative calendar and pandemic.

On top of the “Surround Sound” targeting tactic, we layered hyperlocal geographic targeting by mapping the home addresses and offices of hundreds of targets across the state of California. In the summer of 2021, the utility monopolies tried to force a bill through the California legislature that would have killed rooftop solar. We responded by “Flooding the Zone” in the power corridor of Sacramento, buying millions of ads across the internet targeting anyone who was in or around the capitol building during the weeks the legislation was live. To the surprise of pundits, the bill was resoundingly defeated.

0 + million
decision maker influencers reached
60000 +

Activated grassroots through creation of hundreds of Digital assets.

Our in-house creative team produced hundreds of different pieces of content during the course of the campaign, ranging from fully animated videos to pithy internet ready memes. We then helped SRA deploy the creative assets across the internet to call on California solar enthusiasts to take action and support our cause. The yearlong campaign produced thousands of citizen calls, emails, and written letters through a combination of organic and paid channels. All constituent actions were sent to the governor, key legislators, and the energy regulatory committee to keep up the constant drumbeat of pressure.

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About Solar Rights Alliance

The Solar Rights Alliance (SRA) is a non-profit association of California solar users with one hundred thousand grassroots supporters. The organization combines old fashion grassroots organizing with modern Digital campaigning to defend everyone’s right to make energy from the sun.

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