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View Full Version : how long did you wait for your first customer.


Bennett scape
05-26-2008, 06:54 PM
hi all just a general question how long after your launch did you wait for the first customer. So far for me i am still waiting after a week. thanks :):):)

Liquidfast
05-26-2008, 06:58 PM
You got a SCAG and you don't have any customers???? Are you kidding????

On the bright side, once u get ur first one, they come rolling in. I had neighbors and friends lined up weeks before I started and I advertised heavily. Don't make the mistake of taking anything and everything. Choose to be picky, they will come and they will come quickly. Unless ofcourse you live in small town of landscapers.

Safari Lawn
05-26-2008, 07:26 PM
That's a pretty nice set-up for having no customers!!

I actually got my first 2 or 3 customers before I ever bought any real equipment. So I guess my answer is...I didn't have to wait. I live in a nice subdivision and there are 2 more on the same highway that mine is on. All in all, the three subdivisions have around 800 homes. So far I have spent $20 on flyers in my neighborhood and $60 on advertising in my subdivision bi-monthly newsletter. Currently I have 14 residential and 1 commercial client. I still work a 40hr a week job and do this on the side. It is DEFINITELY keeping me busy. I will say that the money spent on the subdivision newsletter was money well spent. I get phone calls and e-mails all the time for quotes. Once I get someone working with me regularly, I will begin to advertise in the other 2 subdivisions. I like everything close together. Since buying my truck last year, I have only put about 1200 miles on it because most days when I cut, I drive less than a mile!! :)

tacoma200
05-26-2008, 07:28 PM
I didn't wait. I started knocking on doors and had a whole street one day. A very short street.

mowerbrad
05-26-2008, 07:48 PM
You got a SCAG and you don't have any customers???? Are you kidding????

On the bright side, once u get ur first one, they come rolling in. I had neighbors and friends lined up weeks before I started and I advertised heavily. Don't make the mistake of taking anything and everything. Choose to be picky, they will come and they will come quickly. Unless ofcourse you live in small town of landscapers.


I have to agree, don't just take any account that is thrown at you. I have one account now that I wish I didn't take on this year. I really didn't see what it was really like until the second or third mow. You have to pick lawns that will make you the most money, otherwise it isn't really worth it. But you should be getting calls shortly. Things take time, you'll be getting calls before you know it, and once they start coming they seem to never slow down.

ojpent
05-26-2008, 08:31 PM
I started to line up customer during the winter, and made the mistake to take whatever I could get my hands on to start. Just learn to pick and choose which customers would be best and get a good contract drawn up so you don't lose out..

bohiaa
05-26-2008, 08:44 PM
I didn't wait. I started knocking on doors and had a whole street one day. A very short street.

same here. they just came outta no where.....

STIHL GUY
05-26-2008, 08:46 PM
i knocked on a door for the first customer and the rest came to me

jnrogers
05-26-2008, 08:54 PM
I bought a 1987 john deere 240 from a church and two of my parents neighbors were getting very crappy service from a guy who mowed to the dirt and would not trim. So I talked to the one neighbor and the next week the other neighbor called me, then they started rolling in, people would stop and get me to mow theirs. That was in 2000 now I still have them and have 9 more and a huge church, and I too have a full time job. Just be patient they will come, I sound like field of dreams dont I.

gravedigger5
05-26-2008, 09:01 PM
Couple of weeks and the 2nd customer I got is still with me after 8 years in the biz.

ed2150
05-26-2008, 09:01 PM
I started 4 or 5 years ago, got my first customer the first day my ad ran in the paper.

Like others have mentioned, don't feel like you just have to have every yard you get called on and don't underprice. I made both mistakes and it took 2 years to straighten it all out. I won't turn down bidding a yard just because it'll be a tough yard to mow; I price it for what time I'll put into it, sometimes I get it and sometimes I don't. Don't let it bother you, the next one's just around the corner!

flakebortch
05-26-2008, 09:39 PM
A friend of mine who owns the local copy shop posted my flyer and got me my first customer within a week by chatting her up.

I’ve got ads in three newspapers ranging from my side of the mountain to county wide, flyers in key locations and networking going on, and the score after one month of business looks like this:

1. One hired me via networking (copy shop lady), then fired me after another LCO convinced her too.

2. A one-time mow – friend of my mother. Learned to raise rates for one-time mows after that one. And try to discourage acquaintances who don’t know what a legit LCO charges.

3. Finally, a keeper. $120 a week worth of business, but at $40/hour. Actually, this was an underbid. I keep forgetting to ask him which one of my ads he saw.

4. Another keeper saw a newspaper ad. Decently priced mow, but far away. Much upside to this one like a $1800 mulch job, she offers to pay in advance, not a PITA by any means, and she likes me personally so I’m hoping she recommends me to all of the local elite.

5. One emergency mow followed by regular maintenance. Flyer. Took a bath on the initial mow because I underestimated the severity of the neglect, but I priced subsequent mows rather high. Keeper #3. Also, my main gig is bartending, and she caters, so there may be further money down the line not involving lawns.

6. I’ve turned down, or have been turned down by 5 others for various reasons. I believe all of which were from newspaper ads.

7. There are four prospects at-large at this time. Three from newpaper ads and one by word of mouth.

One month ago I was stressing over having spent a chunk of my 401k to finance this thing without any clients, but now I’ve got other things on my mind. If you’re doing what you can to get your name out there, then the ball will start rolling soon, and you’ll be stressing over what is enough but not too much to charge. Hang in there bro!

railman
05-26-2008, 10:18 PM
I started mowing for money 3 years ago. it all started by me cutting the neighbors yards then they recommended me to their friends.

first year cutting grass I had 7 customers.

last year I had 11

this year I have 18 so far and more on the way. I have three pending right now.

how I got more customers is by giving out flyers in the neightborhood and advertising on craigslist because it's FREE.

I promise you they will come.

Bennett scape
05-26-2008, 10:32 PM
what is craigslist? I am currently advertising in neighborhoods close to me and local business but a lot of them say no soliciting, I only have about 500 flyer's so far and business cards and a limited budget to advertise with. I am also quite shy, any advice? also because of all the other stuff I have to do daily it leaves me with a limited amount of time. :)

SmittyCity
05-26-2008, 11:10 PM
hi all just a general question how long after your launch did you wait for the first customer. So far for me i am still waiting after a week. thanks :):):)

Call me tomorrow, I think I have your first customer. 901-574-8633 CHRIS

To any Memphis guys reading this I have a customer in Germantown, TN I would be willing to pass on, b/c i just can't justify going that far for one yard.

railman
05-26-2008, 11:19 PM
go to www.craigslist.com for more info.

marthanmike1959
05-27-2008, 07:45 AM
hi all just a general question how long after your launch did you wait for the first customer. So far for me i am still waiting after a week. thanks :):):)
I'm just getting started on part time bases but i made a call to the landlord on some houses he takes care of repairs renting etc. I picked up 3 yards on my dead end road and picked up a 100 bucks yeterday but yards were over grown low bid on my part but hey im just getting started.I would suggest making a few calls to someone who owns some rental property pick up a few that way