At a Glance:

When you are approaching commercial energy prospects, it is very important to learn how to properly obtain a copy of their energy bills in order to offer a price quote. In this article, we will outline the proper steps to obtaining an invoice from your prospect or customer.

Asking For The Bill.

So, you have a prospect who is interested in your energy broker services. What’s next? Well, you need to ask for a copy of their utility bill in order to properly price their account. The utility bill will show you their rate class, annual energy consumption, utility information, and most importantly, it is required to submit a matrix contract or to obtain a custom price quote from a supplier. Here is the best method to follow when asking your prospect for his/her utility bill:

  1. Explain Why: It is always best to explain to your prospect why you need a copy of a recent utility bill (you need the information on the bill to properly quote the account, the energy suppliers require a bill copy for pricing, etc.).
  2. Make It Simple: Some prospects might not feel comfortable giving you their only bill copy. Make sure you have a scanning application downloaded on your phone to quickly scan a copy of the bill. Some of the better mobile scanning apps can be found here.
  3. Discuss Next Steps: Another great thing to keep in mind when getting a copy of your prospect’s utility bill is to set the right expectations for the next steps of the process. Explain to them that you will submit their bill for pricing and contact them in the near future to present supplier price quotes.

Some prospects could give you some push back when you ask for a copy of their utility bill. Some of the more common objections our salespeople encounter are outlined below with the best way to overcome the objection.

Objection Response
My bill has sensitive information. There is nothing I can do with your utility account information except pay your bill for you!
I cannot locate my bill. Do you get a copy emailed to you? Let’s check your email. Do you have an online account? We can help you set one up.
Give me a quote without the bill. If you’re concerned about me seeing your price, please black it out with a marker. I need your bill copy to get you a quote.

What To Collect.

It is very important to collect the right information when obtaining a copy of your prospect’s utility bill. Many times, energy salespeople will not collect all of the information required by suppliers to price the account and they have to re-visit their prospect to get the information. In order to speed up the process, make sure you get the following from your prospect:

  • a recent bill copy (within the last 90 days)
  • a bill copy without a past due balance amount
  • a complete bill copy (front and back of all pages)
  • a complete bill copy for all utility accounts or meters on the property
  • a clear bill copy with all kW and kWh readings
  • a signed LOA or LOE (more on this below)

LOA’s and LOE’s.

Another important aspect of properly collecting the right information from your energy prospect in order to price their account(s) is to get a signed letter of authorization (LOA) or letter of exclusivity (LOE) from your prospect. While not always required by energy suppliers, it is always best practice to get an authorization letter signed by your prospect. This letter grants you permission to represent them to energy suppliers and obtain price quotes on their behalf. Furthermore, if the prospect has already prices their accounts with another broker, you will need to obtain an LOE in order to get pricing. More on LOA’s and LOE’s below…

More on LOA’s and LOE’s

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