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View Full Version : No Soliciting Issue


gmanlq
02-26-2008, 12:37 PM
So I'm passing out fliers this AM and this upset lady pulls up in a car and says my fliers are pulling the paint off of her mailbox and that there is no soliciting in the subdivision. I couldn't sleep so I was putting these fliers out at 5AM...maybe she can't sleep like me. I did not see the NO soliciting sign at the entrance so I told her that. Told her I was sorry and stopped putting them on as she said their subdivision has a service for the whole neighborhood. I'll check into that as there must be 300+ homes there. Any easy way to find out if a subdivision has contracted a service beforehand...a website or something...short of pestering homeowners?

My subdivision has a No Soliciting sign at both entrances yet we still get the magnets, business cards, fliers taped or tacked to the mailboxes. What do you guys do to advertise in these types of neighborhoods? I'm careful not to put anything in the mailbox or on the flag. Guess I'll try using masking tape instead of scotch tape. Thought about door hangers but I'm not wanting to get out of the car to walk up to their door. Where do you door hanger guys put your hangers?

Am I being paranoid here? Should I just keep putting the flyers out but use masking tape instead of scotch tape? Your thoughts are much appreciated as I'm really wanting to get more customers in the subdivisions that are close to me and where I have current customers.

packey
02-26-2008, 12:57 PM
get the addresses of homes in the subdivision and mail out the flyers. or even better yet get ahold of the HOA and see if they would be interested in accepting bids for the upcoming season.

TNT MOWING
02-26-2008, 01:01 PM
was this in cumming or somewhere else? I Know in Alpharetta there are some large groups that run two crews all week mon-sat, in one neighborhood but there are lots of small timers in there like me.

woodbutcher44
02-26-2008, 01:15 PM
check with the HOA any local realestate dealer can get you the contact info.
a fresh box of doughnuts in the am will get you a long way with a few biz cards,. (DONT FORGET THE NAPKINS)

gmanlq
02-26-2008, 05:21 PM
was this in cumming or somewhere else? I Know in Alpharetta there are some large groups that run two crews all week mon-sat, in one neighborhood but there are lots of small timers in there like me.Yes it was in Cumming.

lucky4511
02-26-2008, 05:51 PM
i was told by my sister, who works for a large company in indpls that it was considered canvassing...not soliciting.

georgiagrass
02-26-2008, 05:53 PM
You should know that putting anything on any part of a mailbox is a federal offense. We put out door hangers -- one at a time; and yes, they are hung on the door!

kleankutslawn
02-26-2008, 06:52 PM
You should know that putting anything on any part of a mailbox is a federal offense. We put out door hangers -- one at a time; and yes, they are hung on the door!

i was told that it was only illegal if you put them in the mailbox

georgiagrass
02-26-2008, 07:42 PM
i was told that it was only illegal if you put them in the mailbox

Here's the provision from the USPS reg: 1.3 Use for Mail

Except under 2.11, the receptacles described in 1.1 may be used only for matter bearing postage. Other than as permitted by 2.10 or 2.11, no part of a mail receptacle may be used to deliver any matter not bearing postage, including items or matter placed upon, supported by, attached to, hung from, or inserted into a mail receptacle.

lifetree
02-26-2008, 08:01 PM
So I'm passing out fliers this AM and this upset lady pulls up in a car and says my fliers are pulling the paint off of her mailbox and that there is no soliciting in the subdivision. ...

Here in Tennessee, I've heard of cases where flyers were placed in sub-divisions that had "No Soliciting" signs posted ... some people complained and the LCO lost his business license because of it !!

Envy Lawn Service
02-26-2008, 08:39 PM
Good grief guys... let me get you on the same page as everyone else on marketing.

With that said, I agree totally with the following....

get the addresses of homes in the subdivision and mail out the flyers. or even better yet get ahold of the HOA and see if they would be interested in accepting bids for the upcoming season.

It's not that hard to get the names & addresses like everyone else does...
Nor is it that hard to cold call the HOA...


If you came doing this other stuff in my neighborhood....
Well, it would pissss me off too.

We have a newspaper here that occasionally distributes papers.
They are free, but thrown out like a regular paper delivery does.
Even that ticks me off.

To a lot of people, this sort of thing is just littering... an annoyance.
And door hangers... those are sort of an INVASION... at least in my area anyways.
Come on..... nobody invited you on my porch!

Anyways, the front door is seldom used anymore. Right into the garage and through the door in there.

gmanlq
02-26-2008, 09:06 PM
You should know that putting anything on any part of a mailbox is a federal offense. We put out door hangers -- one at a time; and yes, they are hung on the door!
That settles it. Thanks. I even asked the mailman and he said not to put anything in the mailbox or on the flag, which I didn't. OK. I'm finally clear on this.

CurbAppealCounts
02-26-2008, 09:14 PM
Anyone ever tossed bags with flyers in peoples driveways? Surely you can't get a good response from this. It would piss me off, but I see it all over the place.

qualitycut
02-26-2008, 09:19 PM
What development in Cumming is it? I have a uncle that lives in one there and could ask him about it if its the same one.

SEALAWNMANAGEMENT
02-26-2008, 09:29 PM
What resources do you guys use to get addresses in key areas to send out mailings?

Grits
02-26-2008, 10:23 PM
You can't lose a business license for passing out doorhangers. Even if you were soliciting, fliers are not soliciting, it is not an actual law. Noone can really do anything to you except ask you to stop. At least that is the way it is around here. I do not know if it differs other places, but I doubt it.
I know this because I have asked the authorities about it because the teen scam selling magazines was hitting our neighborhood last year. I was told that they can not really do anything to them.

Jay Ray
02-26-2008, 10:23 PM
If anything is attached to a painted surface the blue, easy removal masking tape is the best. Anything that creates a touch up paint job for a potential customer isn't likely to make them into a new customer.

Grits
02-26-2008, 10:27 PM
If anything is attached to a painted surface the blue, easy removal masking tape is the best. Anything that creates a touch up paint job for a potential customer isn't likely to make them into a new customer.

So true. That is why I mainly do postcards and ocassionally doorhangers. If you are too lazy to walk up to the door, put the flier or whatever in the newspaper tube......yes, that is legal.

gmanlq
02-27-2008, 09:49 AM
What development in Cumming is it? I have a uncle that lives in one there and could ask him about it if its the same one.The Polo Fields Country Club.

gmanlq
02-27-2008, 09:55 AM
So true. That is why I mainly do postcards and ocassionally doorhangers. If you are too lazy to walk up to the door, put the flier or whatever in the newspaper tube......yes, that is legal.
I'm not lazy or I wouldn't be doing this. I was just thinking walking to the door isn't very efficient. Thanks for the feedback. :)

CurbAppealCounts
02-27-2008, 07:55 PM
The Polo Fields Country Club.

That lady is full of it. We have a handful of accounts in that neighborhood. I have seen several different companies in there as well.

lawnman_scott
02-27-2008, 08:03 PM
Anyone ever tossed bags with flyers in peoples driveways? Surely you can't get a good response from this. It would piss me off, but I see it all over the place.When I did flyers, that is the way I did it. I would get one or two complain a season. They worked great actually, and nothing is faster or more efficeint.

gmanlq
02-27-2008, 08:32 PM
That lady is full of it. We have a handful of accounts in that neighborhood. I have seen several different companies in there as well.

My thoughts exactly along with a few other @#%9 words as well.

CurbAppealCounts
02-27-2008, 08:33 PM
When I did flyers, that is the way I did it. I would get one or two complain a season. They worked great actually, and nothing is faster or more efficeint. Is this a common practice in your area?

gmanlq
02-27-2008, 08:34 PM
When I did flyers, that is the way I did it. I would get one or two complain a season. They worked great actually, and nothing is faster or more efficeint.

Yep just got two calls today. Gave estimates and will follow up in a day or two. Happy hunting.

gmanlq
02-27-2008, 08:37 PM
Is this a common practice in your area?Seems to be. I get flyers and business cards on my driveway or mailbox about 2 to 3 times per week.

Grits
02-27-2008, 09:38 PM
I'm not lazy or I wouldn't be doing this. I was just thinking walking to the door isn't very efficient. Thanks for the feedback. :)

That wasn't directed at you. Heck, I don't hang my doorhangers, my daughter and one of her friends do!

tacoma200
02-27-2008, 11:31 PM
Here in Tennessee, I've heard of cases where flyers were placed in sub-divisions that had "No Soliciting" signs posted ... some people complained and the LCO lost his business license because of it !!

They have business licenses in TN? Not having one doesn't slow any one in Kentucky down.

Just joking, you know how they consider everyone in KY and TN hillbillies or rednecks and sad to say they are right in many cases.

JoeWorks247
03-02-2008, 06:43 PM
I am not in the lawn care business, but do own a business that offers services to consumers. We have tried many different types of advertising and carefully track the results. Surprisingly, flyer distribution has gotten us more customers than any other type of advertising, and we have tried mailers, such as Money Mailer and ValPak, postcards, the ad magazines such as Clipper, and a number of other types of advertising.

We have a professional, full color 8.5 x 11 flyer printed, 20,000 at a time, and have it bagged in a clear door hanger bag so that the flyer is not folded. We have a company that distributes them in compliance with USPS regulations. You can legally attach to the mail box post, but NOT to the mail box. You cannot attach anything to the flag, under the flag, under the door, or tape on the box. You do not want to touch the mail box itself in any way. For the mail boxes with wooden posts, they use push pins to attach the bags. For metal boxes, they will hang the bag on the scrolls of the post. They have experimented with high tack tape on brick mail boxes, but that has not worked very well.

They can legally distribute in neighborhoods that have no soliciting signs, but you have to weigh whether it will make people mad by doing this. I advertise to build good relations in the community and get new business. I do get some complaint calls when the flyers are distributed from some people saying, "Don't ever put anything in my neighborhood again." At the same time they are complaining, I am getting calls from their neighbors, saying they got my flyer and they want to use my service. I always call back any complainers and apologize and offer to take them off of the distribution list. I will take an address off, but not a neighborhood, unless the HOA calls and asks us to stop.

There are some local regulations that can impact your distribution of flyers. I live in metro-Atlanta. In Gwinnett County, if an individual has placed a quarter-sized sticker on the bottom right front of their mail box, saying "No Handbills", you can be fined for attaching to their mail box post. (See www.Gwinnettcb.org for the local regulations. Click on "Litter" and then on "No Handbill Decals" for more information.) Some neighborhoods have stickered all of their mail boxes, so those are obviously not on our distribution list. In neighborhoods that have "Private Property No Trespassing" and "No Soliciting" signs, you can be prosecuted for trespassing if you distribute flyers there. I always check with the local city and/or county government on regulations before I have flyers distributed.

If it is such a hassle and I run the risk of upsetting some people, you may wonder why I use flyers. We get 4 times the response from flyer distribution than we do from any other means of advertising we have ever used. Flyers work, but you have to be careful to follow USPS regulations and local ordinances. It also makes a difference if you have a professional looking flyer versus a black and white crumpled up copy.

I would love to hear from other people who have used flyer distribution for advertising and find out how it worked for them. :waving:

Evans Lawn Service
03-02-2008, 10:02 PM
well i have earthlink and we have (like most servers) white pages.go there and if you know a address in a particular neighborhood then look it up. it will probable say cant find. then look for in the corner revers address look up.don't put a number just the street name a bam it will give you the entire street addresses for that street. so if you have white pages then you can do it

DENNIS MOW
03-02-2008, 10:20 PM
In my neck of the woods they roll them up and throw them in the yards like newspapers. I have to pick them up when i mow. So I call the companys on the flyer and tell them they are littering.:laugh: