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View Full Version : How do you guys advertise your company/services?


MJK
10-28-2006, 11:48 PM
What has been the best way for you personally to advertise your business? Which form has given you the best responses? Thanks for the advice.


Marc

Rex Mann
10-29-2006, 12:01 AM
1. Internet
2. yard signs
3. select print media
4. vendor referrals
5. truck lettering
6. t-shirts

These not in order of leads, but in revenue generated.

Peace,

Rex

http://paversInstalled.Com

DVS Hardscaper
10-29-2006, 11:07 AM
good topic.

I'm working on COMPLETELY re-vamping our marketing campaigns.

But, we're on our way out for the day, we'll chat later!

Green-Pro
10-29-2006, 07:17 PM
word of mouth/customer referrals
stone yard supplier referrals
upsell current customer list
yard signs
newspaper (this was very ineffective for us)
Next year is multiple yellow page listings

mrusk
10-29-2006, 07:28 PM
Last time i checked word of mouth and vendor referals weren't advertising.

Green-Pro
10-29-2006, 08:10 PM
Last time i checked word of mouth and vendor referals weren't advertising.

Better check your advertising class out then. Seems to me they covered word of mouth and its merits/downfalls in advertising.

Tadams
10-29-2006, 09:48 PM
Not really sure what generates the most calls or jobs but this is what we do:

1. T-shirts, hats, sweat-shirts, jackets with the Co. name on them
2. Truck and trailers are lettered
3. Yellow page and Yellow book ad
4. Newspaper ad
5. I always ask for referrals from customers

DVS Hardscaper
10-30-2006, 06:32 PM
Next year is multiple yellow page listings



I advise against "listings". If you have a good marketing campaign going on at the moment, and just want your name out there - then the listings won't hurt ya.

If you're lookin for the listings to generate alotta sales - they won't.

If you want to advertise in yellow pages, I have found that large, 4 color display ads to be the most effective. Which usually cost $450 - $800 / month.

Green-Pro
10-30-2006, 06:55 PM
I advise against "listings". If you have a good marketing campaign going on at the moment, and just want your name out there - then the listings won't hurt ya.

If you're lookin for the listings to generate alotta sales - they won't.

If you want to advertise in yellow pages, I have found that large, 4 color display ads to be the most effective. Which usually cost $450 - $800 / month.

Thanks for the info. Sorry I should have said advertisement in addition to listing:rolleyes: I checked with our regional yellow page directory, a 1/4 column advertisement + a listing would be about $540 for the whole year. This is only slightly more than a 6-7 run (4, 4 x 3 ads; 1, 1/4 page ad; and 1, "spotlight" ad) Newspaper advertising blows IMO. The best newspaper advertising we did was a small classified that simply said locally produced bulk mulch and gave only my cell #. I ran this ad for about one month, cost me $60, I sold about 80 yards of mulch @ $40 per yard (4 yard min), delivered.
Sorry for the rambling and using the mulch ad as an example in hardscape forum, just trying to illustrate how wacky advertising can be. I find this to be a difficult strategy to get put into place.
I'm a marketing major and have no difficulty in putting together promotional materials and using these to sell to customers, existing customers or those that are referred to me. Difficulty it seems lies in the advertising vehicle to use in order to reach those "potential" customers.
Right now our name is out there in the form of yard signs, trucks, uniforms, etc. I am looking toward the yellow pages as another avenue to keep our name out there in front of folks. We do maintenance for a direct marketing group and I am considering offering them an exchange of services package as well as the yellow pages.

mrusk
10-30-2006, 07:17 PM
Direct mail IMO is the best way to advertise. It is pricey though. I mail out letters on fancy letterhead, in fancy envelopes, with a business card included. It runs between .80-.90 cents a letter and this is mailling to carrier routes in areas i want to do business.

Green-Pro
10-30-2006, 07:55 PM
Direct mail IMO is the best way to advertise. It is pricey though. I mail out letters on fancy letterhead, in fancy envelopes, with a business card included. It runs between .80-.90 cents a letter and this is mailling to carrier routes in areas i want to do business.


mrusk, how many are typically mailed out? To what type of location? i.e. large metropolitan, rural, mid size city, small town, etc. What percentage of response? Of these responses how many lead to meeting and actual jobs? reason I ask is as mentioned in my previous post I'm thinking of approaching the Direct Marketing group we service for help.

Thanks

DVS Hardscaper
10-30-2006, 10:55 PM
This will be the first year without advertising in the yellow pages.

It does work.

But, I want to try other things with marketing.


Wanna know somethin???

THERE IS NO SCIENCE TO MARKETING!!


I'm going to try some old school tactics.

i.e. - letter the heck out of the trucks. "Patios" "Landscape Design" "Retaining Walls" "stone work"


And I plan to do some direct mailers as well as mailer coupons.



I'm amazed only Rex has mentioned the internet.

This should be the number one answer. With good SEO techniques/understanding - this can be all the marketing one needs. The internet is the future.

Team-Green L&L
11-17-2006, 01:05 AM
Door hangers and postcards are, hand's-down, the best dollar for dollar advertising.

Mass marketing is very strategic though. I have been studying market strategies for almost 10 years now and am just as nervous taking a chance today as I was on day 1.

Here is a little good advise. Don't invest too much in any one thing at first when beginning a campaign. 5000 door hangers distributed, 5000 postcards, 100 yard signs, 100 hats, and a strong ad in a recognized coupon book will get your groundwork done.

Track EVERYTHING. When you get a call..."Can I ask what made you call us today..." should always be in the conversation.

Consumers say that the internet is their most reliable source of info today. This is from Consumer Reports. We invest alot of money in website marketing and Search Engine Optimization.

"Trial and error" is the only way. Good Luck!

billwlod
03-14-2009, 04:19 PM
Internet make a website
Have something in the yellow pages
Join a business networking group in your area www.okanaganbusinesstobusiness.com
The odd news paper ad sales and services directory for small jobs

PatriotLandscape
03-14-2009, 06:06 PM
Last time i checked word of mouth and vendor referals weren't advertising.

ever been to a bni meeting?

PatiosInstalled
03-14-2009, 06:19 PM
my best investments are home shows and a small display i have at a local Amish market.

When i do home shows i only buy the table top displays. it costs me a couple hundred bucks. I let the other guys spend 5k on the big displays. I'm right across from the big displays, they give the guest a great visual and I capitalize on that because the guest then see my smaller display. I get tons of leads from this and almost all of my prospective clients say that they liked me because I am a smaller co.

The display i have at a local Amish market is probably my greatest investment. I built two pillars with a 8' sitting wall in between them and about 2' of pavers laid in front of the wall and pillars. i pay $75 a month for this space. i go down each week and refill it with cards and EpHenry books.

word of mouth falls in third.


here is my display.
http://i156.photobucket.com/albums/t35/nickde03/Picture687.jpg

i just canceled my ad with yellow book yesterday. i have tried mailings with no response. door hangers sometimes work but we have hung out maybe 500 in the past 3 years.

ford550
03-14-2009, 10:18 PM
Next year is multiple yellow page listings


Don't waste your money.

I have been in the books for years. We finally pulled out and are going to funnel our $14,000 from the books to our other forms of advertising that have actually been working. The books are for tire kickers.

Bru75
03-15-2009, 12:33 AM
Don't waste your money.

I have been in the books for years. We finally pulled out and are going to funnel our $14,000 from the books to our other forms of advertising that have actually been working. The books are for tire kickers.

Amen, brother. Tracked it last year, got one job from the yellow pages and a bunch of people who "just wondered what it would cost".

Mid-Ohio Scaper
03-15-2009, 03:11 AM
I'm gonna have to agree about the Yellow Pages, waste of money! You're pretty much a needle in the yellow book hay stack.

Any you guys have any experience with Angie's List? I've got a brick mason buddy who swears by it, says it's like a sore peter, you just can't beat it! :laugh: Says 85% of his business is because he's on it.
The trick is having a client who is a member to it, then getting them to put you on it. That's the only way to get on Angie's List.

I myself do some advertising in the local merchants guide and the rest is referrals and word of mouth. Worked for me this long, but sure wish I could find a client who's a member of this Angie's List!

STL Ponds and Waterfalls
03-16-2009, 05:33 PM
ever been to a bni meeting?

How does this work for you? I've been invited to them but I usually refrain from these meetings. I like to network with my peers and other bluecollar workers.

billwlod
03-17-2009, 12:47 AM
The Buisness group im in is a little different than the BNI groups we have are own charter and purchase our own stationary. The money we put in it stays in the group, some bni guy dosent get a cut. I have been in it for 3 years now and im an executive member that looks after social events for the group. There is 50 members. I dont stay busy because of the group maybe 6-8weeks a year. If it wasent for the group I tell you I wouldent have been reconised as young entrepreneure of the year buy our local chamber of commerce. It take time to build trust but in the long run its worth it. you get the friendship you make from like minded buisness owners. After awile you see how each buisness is run which helps your own. Referals are the best

billwlod
03-17-2009, 01:15 AM
You reall have somthing here and got my wheels spinning Im thinking about asking a local coffee shop if they want a new free patio....... and maybe the block mfr. will throw the block in for free.

Mid-Ohio Scaper
03-17-2009, 01:24 AM
I'm still waiting to here more about BNI.............Is it worth it?

rnd
03-18-2009, 12:37 PM
Go to RNDSIGNS.COM (http://rndsigns.com)to see hundreds of advertising ideas from lawn care companies from all over the U.S. Request a FREE marketing handbook. Instant online pricing.

riverwalklandscaping
03-18-2009, 01:06 PM
I don't advertise other than names on shirt, truck, and trailers. I use business cards and have my company listed on google. All about referrals if you ask me. People take the word of their friends way over the word of some litter on their door knob. But I am a smaller company than a lot of you guys. I really think anyone who doesn't should go ahead and get it listed. I get calls all the time from it and its free. You would be surprised how many people just google whatever they are looking for these days.. like "boston landscaping" or whatever.

STL Ponds and Waterfalls
03-18-2009, 02:38 PM
I really think anyone who doesn't should go ahead and get it listed. I get calls all the time from it and its free. You would be surprised how many people just google whatever they are looking for these days.. like "boston landscaping" or whatever.

How did you sign up for free? I didn't see anything that was a free listing.

landstyles
03-18-2009, 04:19 PM
1. customer and supplier referrals
2. Company Web site
3. yard signs
4. Trucks & trailers lettered (moving billboard)
-as for yellow pages we recieved 5 calls from customers that found us in the yellow pages in three years. I think most people google for Landscape companies in their area.

We are a 2 crew / third year company and never advertised in papers or handed out flyers. We are booked solid most of this upcoming season. I guess if you are a bigger company that would be a great way to advertise. My best advise for a viable company is to do quality work, make sure cutomers are happy with work and keep in touch with them. Happy customers are your best advertising.

way2real
03-18-2009, 05:55 PM
How did you sign up for free? I didn't see anything that was a free listing.

I believe riverwalklandscaping is refering to Google Maps local business listing: http://www.google.com/local/add/splashPage?hl=en-US&gl=US

I am pretty sure it is free to add your listing.