Consumer awareness campaign to promote off-grid solar water pumps in Kenya



Efficiency for Access is a global coalition promoting energy efficiency as a potent catalyst in clean energy access efforts. Coalition programs aim to scale up markets and reduce prices for super-efficient, off-and weak-grid appropriate products, support technological innovation, and improve sector coordination. Today, the Efficiency for Access Coalition consists of 15 donor organizations that fund programs and initiatives spanning three continents, 44 countries, and 22 key technologies. CLASP and Energy Saving Trust (EST) serve as the co-Secretariat of the Coalition.

Global LEAP results-based financing (Global LEAP-RBF), a mechanism managed by CLASP for the Efficiency for Access Coalition, aims to catalyze the uptake of high quality super-efficient appliances by 1) Lowering the cost to procure large volumes of best-in-class off-grid appliances for early mover off-grid solar companies, and; 2) Facilitating new business partnerships for appliance suppliers that have invested in the production of high-quality off-grid appliances. In 2020, Global LEAP-RBF incentives are available for the procurement of best-in-class solar water pumps identified as Winners or Finalists of the 2019 Global LEAP Awards in Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Uganda, Zambia, Senegal, and Bangladesh.


Most consumer awareness raising efforts for off-grid appliances to date have focused on lighting and solar home systems, and low consumer awareness is a major obstacle for most manufacturers and distributors, as products designed without consumer feedback often do not satisfy consumer needs and expectations. Specifically for solar water pumps (SWPs), low demand has been linked to little awareness of the products’ benefits; lack of awareness of financing options and perceptions that the technology is unaffordable; high perception of risks and how these can be mitigated; as well as limited understanding of how ownership can positively affect yields/incomes.

The project will build on existing Efficiency for Access communications activities with a deep-dive awareness raising campaign for small-scale solar water pumps (less than 2kW) geared towards smallholder farmers. The project will focus on improving consumer awareness, leveraging evidence, content and channel strategies customized to the specific target market needs. In addition to stimulating consumer awareness, this campaign also aims to increase demand for SWPs, with a view to boosting sales in target areas. The campaign will build knowledge and understanding of SWPs amongst consumers and other stakeholders, and build private sector capacity to undertake awareness-raising, sales and marketing activities.

Relevant off-grid markets and audiences in Kenya (e.g. smallholder farmers; agricultural groups and cooperatives) and solar water pumps were selected as the country and technology of choice for this pilot awareness raising campaign for a variety of reasons, including: relative maturity of off-grid markets, presence and availability of competitive and high-quality product options, productive use impact potential of water pumping, maturity of consumer financing options such as pay-as-you-go (PAYG), the enabling environment offered by the Kenyan government, and presence of a range of stakeholders expected to participate in campaign activities.

To support this work, the project is seeking to recruit a consulting firm or team of consultant(s) with specialist expertise in behavior change communications and marketing using mainly below- and some above-the-line approaches, such as Below the Line (BTL) marketing activities (BLT marketing activities give end-users the chance to see about products for themselves and learn about them face to face, through product demonstrations at local markets or ‘van campaigns’ going from community to community. More traditional Above the Line (ATL) marketing activities include public announcements via TV, radio, or newspapers). The campaign will reach relevant audiences in rural and peri-urban areas in 1-3 counties in Kenya (final locations to be determined in consultation with the selected firm or consultant(s)) through a broad range of activities and messaging tailored to address the specific needs of off- and weak-grid, low-income households, and appropriately communicate the value add of the promoted technology and product types. The firm or consultant(s) is expected to work closely with CLASP and EST staff, as well as any interested Global LEAP Awards Winner & Finalist companies operating in the chosen markets, to tailor messaging around quality, availability, and value potential.

Objectives and Requirements

The objective of this assignment is to design, test and implement an awareness raising and behavior change campaign that will increase uptake and use of off-grid solar water pumps. Below- and above-the-line activities will:

  • Create program awareness: Working with participating companies, explain to consumers how the program works, which products are available through the campaign, how customers can access the products, and what to do when customers have problems with the products. In addition to how to use and maintain their product, the messaging will also cover available financing options and how to adapt existing irrigation practices to take advantage of SWPs, as well as where to find ongoing support to do so. The exact messaging in each of these areas shall be developed in close consultation with the participating companies.
  • Build consumer demand for quality-verified off-grid solar products: Warn consumers of the risks of buying poor quality products, highlight products that have been identified as higher-quality with information on pricing and other relevant points of comparison, and emphasize the benefits of buying a higher-quality solar system such as availability of warranties.
  • Build retailer demand for quality-verified off-grid solar products: As required by participating companies, encourage retailers to sell quality products and convince them of the potential demand from consumers. Inform them of opportunities under the campaign to expand their business.
  • Encourage recycling and sustainable practices: Share information about the importance of recycling and provide clear guidelines; promote sustainability broadly and include messaging around water usage concerns (e.g. using drip irrigation or considering implications of over extraction on water table if using boreholes).
  • Emphasize inclusivity: Below-the-line campaign activities should include sensitization among men and tribal/community leaders about the role of and benefits to women regarding access to off-grid appliances, as well as direct outreach to women regarding the benefits of owning and/or having access to a solar water pump. Community sensitization will follow an approach tailored to the targeted geographic locations, as well as to the specific needs of various groups including but not limited to women, youth, displaced populations and marginalized groups.

Key Considerations

  • Audiences: Identification of appropriate target audiences in the selected target country/ market(s) to understand
    • Primarily; consumer knowledge about and level of understanding of the selected technology, its benefits, the cost-benefit of investing in said technology, and the risks and mitigation strategies involved in a purchase decision.
    • Secondarily; consumer understanding of and interest in broader climate issues and the contribution efficient technologies make, messaging around reduced emissions from solar vs. Diesel powered water pumps.
    • Consumer decision making processes, brand recognition/testing.
  • Messaging:
    • Relevance and creativity in messaging approach with great sensitivity to the local cultural and traditional values and norms.
    • Adequate focus on addressing negative perceptions or perceived barriers in the adoption of off-grid products.
    • Executing key messages in such a manner that messaging maintains brand neutrality, truth-in-advertising, and presents balanced information.
    • Preparation of multilingual texts and manuals for training purposes targeting companies and consumer groups.
  • Media Channels: Effective, appropriate and creative channel and media utilization suitable to the local context.
  • Focus: Ensuring that all activities are in line with the strategy and plan, relevant for key target audiences, and in line with key messages.
  • Value for Money: Ensuring that the implementation plan budget reflects value for money, with the firm negotiating for the best media and activity rates within the industry.

Scope of Work

The consulting firm will develop a Campaign Strategy before developing a work plan and budget for further scoping, partner consultation and content planning in selected districts (Jan-Feb 2020), conduct brand testing and pre-campaign baseline surveys (Mar-Apr 2020), roll-out the campaign (May 2020-Jan 2021), and deliver a post-campaign survey and campaign report/readout (Feb-Mar 2021). The firm or consultant(s) should be prepared to go through various iterations of concepts and messages incorporating feedback from the initial campaign scoping and surveys as well as partner companies.

The firm will manage and execute the implementation of the consumer awareness program in Kenya, with support from CLASP and Energy Saving Trust, which will include an initial capacity assessment of the selected firm(s) or consultant(s) and provision of further training and oversight as required.

Below is a list of guiding questions and deliverables that the consulting team will explore through this project. For the planning stage, some rankings as low, medium, and high have been provided where relevant to indicate priority and the corresponding amount of effort that should be allocated in the project planning as well as budget.

  1. Campaign Strategy (by end of February 2020)

Develop an Off-Grid Consumer Awareness Campaign Strategy which:

  • Analyses the ‘competition’ for Global LEAP-verified off-grid solar water pumps, including inefficient or polluting forms of pumping and poor-quality solar counterparts, and recommends a differentiating positioning for quality-verified products being sold through Global LEAP-RBF. Medium
  • Defines target audiences, including retailers, agricultural/farming groups, and potential customers, with special consideration given to rural areas and vulnerable groups, such as female heads of households or farms, displaced populations and marginalized communities. Identifies their needs, factors influencing their purchasing decisions, and the nature of the content needed to influence behavioral change. High
  • Undertakes focus group discussions and stakeholder consultations to understand the perspectives of key consumer segments (e.g. men, women, youth) and other key opinion leaders & stakeholders (e.g. community leaders, government officials) as part of this process. High
  • Develops compelling key messages and collateral (based on approved quantitative and qualitative data & evidence provided by CLASP & EST teams to underpin the messaging, supplemented by quotes and case studies collected by the consultant through stakeholder consultation) that can be adapted to different target audiences and communications channels without compromising consistency and managing expectations appropriately, in local language(s) as appropriate. High
  • Tests campaign brand and basic messaging to establish a baseline and ascertains the effectiveness and relative success of the campaign by testing the messages, the brand, the proposition with target audience, to be conducted through focus groups with representative samples of the different target audiences. Medium
  • Develops a main below-the-line awareness strategy that clearly defines the key communication objectives, value proposition, key message themes, desired responses, behavioral changes, and communication platforms to be deployed. High
  • Develops a complementary above-the-line media strategy, showing how additional relevant communications efforts will be deployed across various traditional and social media channels, and providing a rationale for any media channels and outlets selected. Medium
  • Helps articulate Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and other relevant metrics of success for the campaign based on strategy development, campaign scope and expected outcomes. Low
  • Cultivates partnerships, identifying additional partnerships needed to implement the campaign, for example with Global LEAP-RBF participating companies, non-government organizations, community-based organizations, agricultural providers and cooperatives, local universities, local distributors, and others as needed. High
  • Based on the above strategy, prepares a final plan and budget for the campaign, running from April/May 2020 onward:
    • Provide a comprehensive breakdown of activities, deliverables and timelines.
    • Map out staffing, logistics, and resource requirements.

The strategy will benefit from – and build upon – insights from consumer focus group discussions as part of this final scoping period, as well as from a recently completed stakeholder mapping exercise as part of market assessment activities.The EST team will concurrently develop an M&E framework for the campaign, to include tools such as consumer and stakeholder surveys as well as the development of KPIs, which the selected consultant(s) will help refine and adhere to throughout the campaign process.

2. Content planning, M&E framework adherence and pre-campaign survey (January to April 2020):

  • With support from EST and CLASP on the survey design, conduct a pre-campaign baseline survey among the target audience, as well as undertake any other agreed-upon M&E efforts, and make any necessary refinements to the strategy, content and platforms before market roll out.
  • Prepare all final relevant content collateral and platforms, and cultivate ongoing partnerships as needed to amplify messaging, with support and oversight from CLASP and EST staff following the selection of the firm(s) or consultant(s) and an assessment of their capacity and relevant skill set in this regard.
  • Conduct a well-planned campaign program in partnership with Global LEAP-RBF participants, through which process necessary refinements may be made to the strategy, content and platforms before market roll out.
  • Provide detailed financial reporting on all project components.

3. Campaign Roll-out (May 2020 to January 2021)

  • Conduct a well-planned roll-out based on experience from the baseline survey, partner feedback, and in-country scoping research.
  • Develop a transparent media and communications tracking system to ensure accountability on media expenditures, as well as achieved impact and outcomes of all communication activities, with recommendations for course corrections if and when needed.
  • Provide monthly progress reports and participate in check-in and/or planning calls with CLASP and/or EST staff as needed.
  • Provide detailed financial reporting on all project components.

4. Post-campaign survey & reporting (February to March 2021)

  • With support from EST and CLASP on the survey design, conduct a post-campaign survey among the target audience, as well as any relevant exit interviews with participating companies or other agreed-upon M&E efforts, to analyze campaign success and articulate opportunities for improvement.
  • Deliver a report that synthesizes findings and lessons learned from the campaign strategy development, campaign messaging delivery, and resulting success metrics (e.g. increased awareness seen from surveys, increased product sales, etc.), and where possible compared to baseline markets (e.g. Global LEAP-RBF sales in other parts of Kenya or other countries in scope that are not coupled with consumer awareness raising), and includes a set of recommendations for future rounds and/or replications in other countries.
  • Share all relevant campaign messaging, materials and collateral with the CLASP and EST team.
  • Provide detailed financial reporting on all project components.

Deliverables / Specific Outputs Expected

  • Inception Report
  • Campaign Strategy
  • Pre-campaign Survey
  • Initial Campaign Plan and Budget
  • Results of campaign testing and focus group exercises
  • Full Roll-out Plan and Budget
  • Monthly progress reports
  • Post-campaign Survey
  • Final report


Technical and financial proposals are invited from interested parties that can deliver on the scope of work described above. The project team is open to innovative and alternative approaches to campaign delivery that will increase the understanding of the market potential for solar water pumps in relevant regions outlined above. We also welcome proposals that highlight synergies with existing programs to avoid duplication.

Parties should also indicate the proposed costs to undertake the work, with indications of which piece(s) of the SOW they expect to cover to what extent given the priority guidance above and within the budget they propose. Proposals are expected to fit within a general budget range of USD 100-150,000 not counting monitoring & evaluation efforts such as the campaign pre- and post-survey design, and must specifically detail present knowledge of the off-grid appliance sector and previous experience of undertaking a campaign of this nature.

Proposal checklist:

  • Previous experience: Consultant shall include in their proposal the organizational structure of the firm, and relevant previous experience including the country of the assignment, the client organization’s name, client contact for reference, date of assignment, brief description of the activities implemented, where possible.
  • Detailed description of approach and methodology: Understanding of the objectives of the assignment, the technical approach, and the methodology you would adopt for implementing the tasks to deliver the expected output(s) as per the SOW. In this section of the proposal the consultant or firm shall demonstrate the ability to: coordinate a technically and managerially sound and gender balanced team to perform the agreed-upon service; conduct concurrent/multiple assignments; provide stand-by capacity to ensure the satisfactory completion of services within agreed-upon timelines; assure completion of work under tight deadlines. This section should include a timeline, such as a Gantt Chart, with estimated dates for the completion of tasks. The consultant should also include a high-level work plan, outlining the team mobilization and implementation of the main activities/tasks of the assignment, their content and duration, phasing and interrelations, milestones, and tentative delivery dates of any deliverables, surveys and reports.
  • Core team/key experts: Please describe the structure and composition of the core team, including a list of the key experts, other consultants/experts and any relevant technical and administrative support staff as needed. The team must be self-sufficient and dedicated to the project.
  • Project budget: Please provide a detailed budget that includes all direct and indirect cost estimates for executing the project, including a breakdown (in days) of the level of effort and costs associated with each team member that will be engaged in the project for each task.

Schedule and Timeline

This assignment will run a campaign strategy and planning period from January to April 2020 and conduct a roll out from May 2020 to January 2021, with a follow up campaign survey and final reporting due March 2021. Consumer awareness campaign activities will be piloted alongside the procurement and distribution of Global LEAP-RBF participating off-grid solar water pumps during this time.

Candidate Qualification Requirements

  • The selected firm will have significant local or regional experience and track record in the development of a communication strategy, disseminating communication materials and raising awareness among consumers about the characteristics and benefits of a product.
  • Desired areas of expertise include: marketing, development of mass communication campaigns and non-conventional methods of communication.
  • Preference will be given to firms with good knowledge or relevant experience in the renewable energy field, off-grid products, or community-based consumer campaigns.

Application Process

Interested firms should submit a 10-20 page document outlining the following topics. Indicative page suggestions are also given.

  • A technical proposal including:
    • Their organization’s skills and capacity and team members’ credentials (2-3 pages)
    • Bios/CVs of the core team, in addition to the above if desired (2-3 pages)
    • Previous experience related to the assignment (2-3 pages)
    • Proposed approach to delivering on the scope of work and methodology (4-5 pages)
    • Creative initial ideas around how to make the campaign a success (1 page)
    • Campaign timeline (1 page)
    • Any names of other clients for whom the firm/consultant(s) has undertaken similar assignments, including references (1 page)
  • A separate financial proposal

All organizations or individuals responding to the RFP should provide the items listed above in the Proposal Checklist. The final list of deliverables as well as budget will be determined in negotiation with the selected firm.

Evaluation Procedure

A committee appointed by CLASP will evaluate proposals received from respondents. Selection of qualified companies or organizations will be based upon the following criteria:

  • Technical Evaluation Factors
  • Proposed Cost

All bids will be evaluated and ranked using Quality and Cost Based Selection (QCBS), with 75 percent of the score accorded to the technical proposal, and 25 percent to the proposed cost. The detailed evaluation criteria can be found in Annex A.


Parties that wish to respond to this RFP must complete the LEIA Pre-Qualified Questionnaire if they have not done so already for other RFPs. Creating an account will put you on our email list to receive updates about opportunities to collaborate with CLASP in the future.

The deadline for this application is January 24, 2020. Proposals must be submitted through the form on the CLASP website. All questions may be addressed to Joanie Coker at The last date for submission of questions related to this RFP is January 20, 2020. We request all inquiries be made by email.

Reporting Arrangements

The selected firm shall report to a Project Manager who will be overseeing the implementation of this assignment, with ongoing technical consultation with various members of the CLASP and EST teams as well as other Efficiency for Access and/or Global LEAP partners as needed throughout the assignment. All communication and reporting shall be in English, and all campaign-facing deliverables and messaging shall be disseminated in local language(s) as appropriate.

Annex A: Evaluation Criteria

1. Technical Approach (35 points): The technical approach described in the proposals will be evaluated on:

  • The demonstrated understanding of the overall project context (15).
  • The detailed work plan and approach clearly defining the target objectives and the strategy to achieve the objectives as outlined in the scope of work (20).

2. Management Structure and Staff Qualification (20 points): The proposed management structure and staff will be evaluated on:

  • The professional qualifications and the extent to which the requisite expertise and experience of the key personnel will directly contribute to the completion of the tasks (20).

3. Past Performance and Corporate Experience (20 points): The experience and capacities of the contractor will be evaluated based on:

  • The past performance, familiarity, and experience with consumer awareness raising campaigns (10).
  • Extent of local expertise including experience, qualifications, and track record in implementation of similar initiatives (10).

4. Proposed Cost (25 points): While the overall Technical Evaluation is the key factor in reviewing the proposal, the cost evaluation will be an essential factor in determining the final contract award and ability to remain in the competitive range and will be evaluated for feasibility, completeness, and practicality.


Sign up for the CLASP newsletter