View Full Version : door to door?

12-12-2001, 03:50 PM
i got in a real jam this fall being overbooked and not having the man power to do the work. so, i know this guy who has a tree service and he asked if i need help, its been working out great hes here every day, has his own equipment, and knows how to do the work. what bothers me a little is that if the customers come out to talk, he imediatly starts soliciting other work. he will say hey those gutters should really be cleaned, we can do it for $75, or he will tell them about a limb that should be trimmed or something. i also found out that he goes door to door and introduces himself and gives them a card and tells them he is in business and will do anything they need. a few of my customers have told me they have seen him around. i dont know if this is a bad thing or not. going door to door is not for me, what do u guys think of this practice? one thing i noticed about him is that every time he gives a price the customer beats him down and gets the work from him cheaper, and also he always gets the crap jobs, never any nice landscaping work or anything. could this be because they think hes "rif raf" for going door to door. i dont know, what do u all think?

12-12-2001, 04:52 PM
If he is using his own equipment, he is a subcontractor. He probably has the right to solicit bus. for himself. In fact you may find that he has stolen some customers next year and will be a competitor. I would back out of this one soon. You could have him do the low profit jobs then when he lo-balls you he is dead.

Good luck:confused:

12-12-2001, 05:29 PM
Good idea 1grnlwn

Best thing is since your season is over, try to avoid using him any more in the future, if you have to next season use him like he just stated.

One other thing you could have done was to have a contract with him about what he can and can't do on your customers.

I did some subcontracting mowing for a LCO here a few years ago, they had contracts with every sub that worked for them. You could not solicit business in the areas you were working in. If a customer come out and asks you to do other work or bids on this and that you had to turn it in to him.

As that one went that LCO wanted out of mowing and after 4 years of doing this he sold those accounts to the subs, with the strict rights to the other work to be prefomed by him.

He is the easiest LCO to take accounts from. Gee I wonder why.

12-13-2001, 01:23 AM
i think u guys are missing the piont. my real question was, is going door to door soliciting yourself apropriate in this business? in my opinion, it shows that u r hard up for work, and more likely to work cheap. this, in my opinion, is also the cause of the customers haggling with him all the time. i had to just tell him not to ask my customers if they need additional work, it seems pushy to me. i have my own way of doing that, what i do is send a little information to them in the mail, thanking them for their business, and also explaining that to " better serve them" we also offer the following services......and they choose what they want and dont want. anyway, door to door? is it acceptible, or unproffesional?

12-13-2001, 01:27 AM
Well we tried it our first year in business. Looking back, I would say we would not go door to door again.

To begin with, I believe people are a little leary answering the door especially if they peep out and see a stranger there.

Sure, you may be perceived as a hard worker, but I'm just going by the reaction we had, I don't think people took us too seriously.

Door to door is not for us.

12-13-2001, 01:39 AM
what do you pay this guy? Do you think that he wants to work for your pennies? NO! He is taking advantage of you to get other work for HIS business. He looks like an extension of your business because he is with you, servicing your clients. This way it is not door to door but you have given him a "warm" lead because the client thinks he already deals with his co. but as you know, it is not your co. he is selling for. You already said that is not your style, so don't allow it while he is on your time!!!!! If you don't like it, cut him loose!!!!!!!!!! I guarantee, that he his associating himself as part of your business!!!!!!
It is your gig, don't let someone else steal your hard work!
Best of luck with this

12-13-2001, 01:40 AM
I don't have it in me. I can upsale to my customers but going door to door would never happen.

I guess its a personal preference.

12-13-2001, 02:09 AM
The early bird gets the worm.

Persistance is the key to sales.

He is a good sales men.

I did door to door sales when I was 15 and did better then than any other method now.

Once you get you foot in the "DOOR" it's all down hill from there.

2 man crew
12-13-2001, 02:48 AM
Bobbyged I would be extremely nervouse having something like that going on. As far as I'm concerned he has no right to be going door to door while he is working for you. Even if he is a sub he is still affilated with your company. What do you think your customers and your customers neighbors think when they are talking with this guy? Go with your gut on this one. Jm2c.

12-13-2001, 05:19 AM
bobbygedd wrote:
my real question was, is going door to door soliciting yourself apropriate in this business?

He was not to concerned with him doing it. Told him to stop.

bobbygedd wrote:
. i had to just tell him not to ask my customers if they need additional work

bobbygedd wrote:
door to door? is it acceptible, or unproffesional?

Do you remember from older movies that had "The traveling sales man"

Avon in the old days.

How did they sell products? Door to door.

They key to getting new business is getting your foot in the door. Getting the customers to speek with you.

I don't know which one I hate more cold calling or door to door.

OK then do you hate it when some one knocks on your door to try and sell you something. I do, but I do remember them. I may hate the product they were trying to sell because it was door to door but I remember it. Most likely future customers will remember him when they need somthing done and they will call him.

12-13-2001, 07:52 AM
I don't think it's "unprofessional" just a waste of my time. I do agree that it makes you appear hardup for work and that they would be expecting a low price.

12-13-2001, 08:23 AM
door to door is the fastest way to start a lawn service. If you want to start a business just pick a neighborhood and knock on doors and tell people about the services you offer. It takes a certain person with thick skin and a never say die determination but at the end of the day you will be in the lawn business. It just depends on how much nerve you have. Thats why salespeopl;e get paid big money. I used to have a business that I trained salespeople and if you don't have the personality for it , try another method and be patient but don't look down on door to door just because you cant do it. I have done some soft sell to neighbors where we are working by saying hello and striking up conversation and pointing out things I think Icould help them with but the cold call is tough!

12-13-2001, 09:41 AM
a lesson i learned about salesmen. during my very brief stint as insurance salesman. me and bob mckeller ,my super visor
stoped at this house. while the wife was telling us to get,
the husband is hollering from the back how ,if thats a salesman
im just gonna kick his ---. man i was worried. not bob.
he begins his flowery talk as if they were best friends.
he sold that man more insurance ,before we left there.
somepeople just plain good at that type of sales.
my hats off tooem. not me tho.

12-13-2001, 09:50 AM
When you go door to door make sure the town or village allows it
Most villages around here require you to go to the village hall and get a licence .Some dont even allow it or even putting out flyers.
I guess the rich dont like to be bothered in them villages.

12-13-2001, 05:30 PM
because of all th +'s and -'s in it. First of all, from the beginning, a red flag popped up. The reason being, is that it is stated that this guy has his own "tree service"? Why isn't he busy with this tree service? Every person I know, with tree services are so busy, they are booked for a month and a half back. And, ironically, this is the guy doing all this "salesmanship"? Something don't figure right, here. Just how elaborate of a "tree service" IS this guy. Does he have all the equipment? A bucket? A chipper? etc.? And, if so, WHY is he offering to clean gutters? If he DOESN'T have all this, than is he just a local scrub that goes around hacking on neighborhood trees? (there are aLOT of them!) If THIS is the case, allowing him up on a ladder on a job that is yours, that he obtained while working for and under your company, would be the LAST thing I would allow, because I'll bet a dime to a donut, that this guy has NO insurance, let aLONE this type that would cover aerial operations. Otherwise, he wouldn't be wanting to clean gutters for whatever price the customer later specifies! What happens if he does some damage to your customers house? Who are they going to look to? Again, the RED flag.

On the other hand, door to door is a great way to drum up business, IF you hit the market. Doing this on Bobby's time and his job, is very uncouth, and it ISN'T door to door. If you hire someone to represent your company, then have him represent YOUR company. This is much like a thread I read awhile back about someone doing some "landscaping" on the side, but this is a bit more extreme. Now, I have to say, I've pulled my truck over in instances like when I've seen someone's lawn in dire need of mowing, and it's in my area, introduced myself, and I was in like Flint. I remember one time, I was driving by in this subdivision, and there was this older man out in his yard, struggling with his Lawnboy, because his yard just sort of got away from him. Man when he saw the rig pull off to the side, and me jump out with a smile on my face and a card in my hand, he knew why I was there. His face just sort of lit up in relief! You would have thought I was a rescue squad pulling up. or something! Needless to say, he became a good regular customer. I've also, pulled up if I thought they may want or need a late Fall cleanup. (Right now is a great time for this - I can get work everyday) That's what I meant by the market. But this is just hustling. That's all it is. And I would NEVER think to do this at someone else's expense. When I say expense, I don't mean just monetary, I'm talking image and rep, also. O.k., I've carried on for long enough, now. Anyways, Bobby, use your discretion on this one. Take care.

12-14-2001, 01:23 AM
guys, guys, guys. hold it, am i writing this wrong? he did not start going door to door after he started with me. some of my customers mentioned that thay had seen him in the past knocking on doors selling work. and, when he tries selling my customers additional work while we r there, he thinks he doing something good for both of us. i personally dont do that, like i said i just send them a list of available services, and they can ask any questions they want. its like this, if a man knocks on my door looking for work, id assume hes hard up, and expect a low price. i dont believe hes trying to steal my customers. its just that he and i are in two different businesses. mine is a repeat service business, his is a one time( tree cutting) service. just dont think he conducts himself properly and wanted your opinions. thanks for all of them