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Mike M
03-19-2008, 07:24 PM
I think it would be cool if willing members would post a brief report periodically on year to year sales comparisons or month to month, etc., or just things have been slow or things are picking up...

I'm gonna see if I can get the poll to work to make it interesting.

Mike M
03-19-2008, 07:35 PM
Okay, it worked. Multiple selections okay and no names posted, poll ends in March. I could do it once a month if anyone participates.

In my case, I started a year ago, so naturally it is up, but things are slow for landscape design/build around here. I was told renovations are good.

Lite4
03-19-2008, 10:27 PM
Mike do a month by month on the poll. That should show current trends pretty well. Good idea.

Pro-Scapes
03-19-2008, 10:39 PM
Good idea mike. So far this year lighting has been doing much better.... new construction landscapes are down but since i no longer do that its fine with me. Seems the guys with an excellent high end following are doing very well still

extlights
03-20-2008, 01:44 AM
We're starting to get a lot of responses, but because of the rough winter and the ground still frozen we're going to be behind this year. At this time last year we had 6 projects finished....It looks like we won't be able to start the first one of this year for at least a few more weeks. Stupid winter! :cry:

Pro-Scapes
03-20-2008, 09:01 AM
We're starting to get a lot of responses, but because of the rough winter and the ground still frozen we're going to be behind this year. At this time last year we had 6 projects finished....It looks like we won't be able to start the first one of this year for at least a few more weeks. Stupid winter! :cry:

Sunny and 70 here today...been close to 80 then got windy the last few days. Bad enough we have not been up in trees. 8 tree lights to hang today I gotta get running! Dave having work on the board is a good thing. Its called job security!

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
03-20-2008, 09:52 AM
From a guy with a degree in Economic Geography & Demographics I gotta say, that is a very strange 'poll' up there.

On the question of sales during the month, the total responses = 50%
On the question of YTD sales, total responses = 87.5%

Neither of these results correlate to the response rates of each category either.
The Monthly question has had 4 respondents, but 1 out of 4 does not equal 12.5%
Similarly, on the YTD question there has been a total of 7 respondents, but 5 out of 7 does not equal 62.5%

Please enlighten me on how this can be? I just don't get it.

extlights
03-20-2008, 10:04 AM
Well it shows under the poll that there has been 10 voters. Looking at the poll having had 10 people vote the percentages look right. The thing that throws me off is that unless I'm reading the results incorrectly, it looks like there has been more than 10 votes?

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
03-20-2008, 10:22 AM
Ahh, good eyes there Dave, I missed that bottom line.

So with a total of ten respondents, clearly not everyone has answered each question. This throws things off a bit.

Oh well, interesting exercise.

Mike M
03-21-2008, 08:53 PM
James, it's permutations not combinations. I configured it so people can answer just one q if they want, or they can do both month over month as well as ytd. Next time I'll specifically ask each participant for both. The admin can set the polls up to have multiple q's, which is what we really need for this. I was only able to do one.

Chris J
03-21-2008, 10:48 PM
I find these computations and graphs usless. My business is such a roller-coaster that it is very difficult to even determine when "the busy season" is going to occur. This month is a perfect example. I've already done over 50k this month, and we have numerous jobs lined up that we are going to try to get done before month end. This would be an odd March, as the usual is around 50K for the entire month! I've never been able to figure out why this happens, but I guess you just have to roll with the tide as it happens.
I will say this though: recently I stopped doing a lot of random advertising and went back to the "tried and true" direct mail piece that I have spoken about before. Business is now back on track better than ever.

Mike M
03-22-2008, 09:11 AM
recently I stopped doing a lot of random advertising and went back to the "tried and true" direct mail piece that I have spoken about before. Business is now back on track better than ever.

That's awesome, Chris. I was talking with a marketing guy who said his clients are not cutting back on spending, they are just scrutinizing all placements now more than ever.

Huge price difference between rsvp and going solo with quantummail. I'll post my results.

I'm also getting some quotes from the rsvp guy on my own independent runs using his company.

Chris J
03-22-2008, 11:05 AM
You can use RSVP's corporate printer to print your cards for cheaper than the normal rate (as long as you are a customer). I used to do this, but I would obtain my own list. City Publications is another "deck" company that does the exact same thing as RSVP. CP is the company I used to print my last batch of 60k cards.

irrig8r
03-26-2008, 12:50 AM
My basic measure of how the economy is going is how many serious prospects I get via phone or email. Now, because some of my work is sprinklers, then the weather enters into the picture too...

But just as an example, I didn't get to my voice mail over the weekend and yesterday got home too late to return calls. In 3 days got 12 calls about new work, 11 of them from people I've never met:

One where I had looked at the property regarding sprinklers and lighting and put them in touch with a landscape designer friend of mine. They were in the process of putting in a pool and I told them where to run conduit for the future lighting. The pool and hardscape are in and they're ready to get going.

One additional serious call about lighting in a very nice area in the hills. We're meeting on Saturday.

One sprinkler controller replacement call.

One drip irrigation call.

Another call about new sprinklers and lighting.

One about a whole sprinkler system renovation or replacement.

One about sprinkler repairs at a condo complex.

The rest were about residential sprinkler repairs.


I don't advertise. I have a couple of A ratings on Angie's List, and one at Yahoo Local. I get referrals from a couple distributors, gardeners, and a spray and fertilizing service, but half of these 12 calls came from them running across my website while searching for the services they need.

Mike M
03-26-2008, 09:20 AM
Gregg, does your license plate say irrig8r? I'll bet that's where you get all that business.

I'm trying to add upscale fertilizer and landscaping, downscale fertilizer and landscaping, and anything that will help get me out the door and keep a full-time helper going.

I got a commercial prospect along a main corridor here from my mag ad. I'll be meeting with the county zoning office today. They have an "approved" lights list which includes mercury vapor, florescent, incandescent, high pressure sodium, but no mention of halogen. I said what about new technology as it becomes available, and they said they've already been giving the okay for LEDs (I can't imagine this, but one of the communities has those solar lights in flower beds by the gate). This is the most strict zoning I've ever seen in my life in regards to landscapes and architecture. But the present lighting is very bad (line voltage, no service, all floods and glares).

This is why I need pic's for a powerpoint presentation and some educational materials. It's not just county approval for commercial applications--I have to work with a couple dozen upscale community review boards, too, for approval of residential jobs.