As energy and sustainability initiatives gain momentum, companies are working overtime to develop the most innovative energy-saving technologies. While this should be good news, the slow adoption rate of these emerging technologies is hindering the progress toward achieving more sustainable business practices.

So why are people so hesitant to adopt these new innovations and incorporate them into their corporate sustainability initiatives? Our insights show that one reason is that the ever-evolving energy-efficiency market may be moving too fast for some companies to keep up. The rapid emergence of newer, more efficient technologies is generating fear among businesses that they could invest in a product that will soon be obsolete when the next best thing is brought to market.

Another factor leading to the slow adoption of new emerging technologies is what decision-makers see as a lack of proof. Especially in industries that are slower to adopt such as healthcare, education and nonprofits, new-to-market equipment that is not yet widely adopted is often viewed as unproven, making it a risky investment for business leaders. Private lending institutions share the same concerns over the risk, making financing opportunities for these new technologies hard to come by. This lack of trust, coupled with the steady rate of market-propelled advances, makes decision-makers hesitant to invest in technology that may not be the latest and greatest come tomorrow.

In order for marketers to overcome these challenges, efforts must be made to stimulate the market for the adoption of emerging technologies so companies have the best resources available to help them achieve their energy-efficiency and sustainability goals.

So how do we bridge the gap? By giving decision-makers confidence in these new innovations. Case studies, testimonials and success stories that show customers achieving real savings and other business or process advantages will give business leaders and lenders the proof they need to support the new investment. Demonstrations, guarantees, pilot programs and partnership opportunities are also great ways for customers to try out technologies with limited risk. For those prospects sold on the investment, state energy offices and energy-efficiency programs can be great resources for securing financing.

When consumers shop for electronics and high-ticket appliances in today’s market, customer reviews and ratings often have a significant impact on purchasing decisions. The same is true in the B2B world. Case studies and testimonials give business leaders and lenders the confidence to invest in the newest and most efficient emerging technologies. Having these materials ready at pitch time will help calm their fears and get them ready for the next best thing.