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View Full Version : Most effective way to get residentials


LawnShark Kiley
05-11-2010, 09:13 PM
I know I'm beating a dead horse by asking "how do I get more clients?" But I just want to know what methods have worked the best for everybody. We have our "foot in the door" so to speak in a few neighborhoods, whats the best way to pick up more people in that neighborhood. Maybe after we get done mowing, go around and hang door hangers?


any input appreciated, don't torch me for being a newbie

ShooterK2
05-11-2010, 09:59 PM
I've had great success this year by running a non-stop ad in our local newspaper, and by inserting a flier into the newspaper to target certain areas. I've also done well by knocking on doors and speaking directly to the homeowner.

lawnkingforever
05-11-2010, 11:45 PM
Make your current yards stand out. Spend the extra time making perfect lines and trim around everything. Also edging can make a property really shine, when the others are not edged. The yards I have in developments get edged everytime and not with a trimmer. Do a good job and be patient and the work will come your way. I have 10 yards in 1 neighborhood and 5 in another. It did not happen overnight. I flyered all these areas multiple times, but very few accounts were acquired this way. It was mostly through referals and people just approaching me in person.

LawnShark Kiley
05-12-2010, 02:17 PM
What about real estate properties, are they easy to obtain? Or are they a PITA

cgaengineer
05-12-2010, 02:58 PM
What about real estate properties, are they easy to obtain? Or are they a PITA

PITA, what reason does a Realtor have to want to pay you for a house thats sitting earning him zero income...especially in this economy...be warned, some will also not pay. I am not saying all realtors are crooks, but some of them are.

Is your truck lettered...like not with magnetic signs? This has gotten more people approaching me then anything I have done...not all equals work, but they know you are serious if you lettered your truck.

LawnShark Kiley
05-12-2010, 05:14 PM
well for right now, all I have is a magnet. That is because its an old truck, and to be honest, I plan on getting a new one soon, so the less money I stick into it the better, ya know? Good point about realators, I was just thinking they would want their properties to look nice, but since you mention it, I guess theres no real reason they couldnt just do it themselves, I'll be careful.

AllSeasonServices
05-12-2010, 06:31 PM
Im on the other end of the reality opinion. That is actually where most of my maintenance has come from in two neighborhoods. I try to deal with the homeowner trying to sell the home and just use the realitor to refer me. Then ask them to refer me again to whomever is buying the house. I picked up 7 full service contracts from new owners where I was referred by the realitor,3 of which im also doing major renovations for. And ive got 2 more bids pending for new owners. Even if I dont know the realitor if I see a home with a sale sign and the landscape is unmaintained I drop a flier, If the sign says under contract, or Sold I drop a Flier. Almost every time I do this I atleast get a Phone call about pricing. Where ive had the problem was with two contractors that flip houses. Not that they dont pay they just try and beat me up on the price. I have to explain every time that the grass is a foot tall so its going to be more expensive. And I almost always get the "I can get someone for half that price" reply... I just tell them that they should go with that guy and they give me the work anyway because they are mostly just talking out there a$$ and they need it done fast.

turf and snow
05-12-2010, 06:52 PM
Word of mouth is the best advertising. Do more than the customer expects and they will tell others about you and how great you are. I also give my customers a one time $30 credit for every person they refer who goes with me for at least a season. I started with 2 properties 5 years ago and am up to 95 eleven years later. I turn people away weekly because my customers keep giving out my name. In the beginning dont be too selective about the properties you service but dont work for peanuts either to land these accounts. The work will probably be hard at first but as you get larger you can be much more selective about the customers YOU CHOOSE. Hope that helps

Lawnut101
05-12-2010, 09:08 PM
PITA, what reason does a Realtor have to want to pay you for a house thats sitting earning him zero income...especially in this economy...be warned, some will also not pay. I am not saying all realtors are crooks, but some of them are.

Is your truck lettered...like not with magnetic signs? This has gotten more people approaching me then anything I have done...not all equals work, but they know you are serious if you lettered your truck.

I work for a really good realty company. They pay within a few days of receiving an invoice, and they appreciate a good job.

fiveoboy01
05-12-2010, 09:25 PM
Make your current yards stand out. Spend the extra time making perfect lines and trim around everything. Also edging can make a property really shine, when the others are not edged. The yards I have in developments get edged everytime and not with a trimmer. Do a good job and be patient and the work will come your way. I have 10 yards in 1 neighborhood and 5 in another. It did not happen overnight. I flyered all these areas multiple times, but very few accounts were acquired this way. It was mostly through referals and people just approaching me in person.

This.

Word of mouth...

People seeing me around - it's amazing how many people will approach you when you're out working. This ties in with what the guy above said, do a good job, dress clean and professional, and carry yourself with pride... People can sense this.

For non-human contact, flyers have gotten me the best results by far. Not just any old flyer, high quality full-color on glossy paper. They cost more, but they get kept at a higher rate than the ones that get tossed in the trash immediately.

cgaengineer
05-12-2010, 10:57 PM
I got 2 multi colored decals made for my doors for $120 so even if you are in an old truck it would be worth it.
Posted via Mobile Device

LawnShark Kiley
05-12-2010, 11:58 PM
Thanks guys! I just ordered a bunch of fliers from vistaprint, high quality glossy ones, I'm just going to keep heavy on advertising, and we do do a good job, from what our clients tell us! We did just get some shirts made up too, so we dress and act professional, no gimicks. Ill keep you updated!

LawnShark Kiley
05-13-2010, 12:05 AM
also threw up an ad on craigslist, figured it couldn't hurt

topsites
05-13-2010, 12:06 AM
Word of mouth is the best advertising. Do more than the customer expects and they will tell others about you and how great you are.

We have a winner!

fiveoboy01
05-13-2010, 12:16 AM
Tip-put a minimum price in your Craigslist ad, otherwise you'll get millions of phone calls from people wanting you to mow their lawn for 10 dollars:)

Pennington Lawncare
05-13-2010, 12:18 AM
Try this. Tell your regular customers that for every new customer they refer to you, you will mow their yard once for free. The new customer has to become a regular customer too is the only catch. It hasn't worked worth a crap for me but, you would think that it would.

unkownfl
05-13-2010, 12:20 AM
The most cost effective way is to mow late in the day and on the weekends.

fiveoboy01
05-13-2010, 12:22 AM
Absolutely. People are out and about. I try to install mulch on Saturdays and Sundays too. A lot of neighborhoods have the "competition" aspect and if the property you're working looks twice as good as the guys' across the street, someone's going to stop and talk to you.

STIHL GUY
05-13-2010, 12:48 AM
i have gotten most of my accounts by word of mouth

rain man
05-13-2010, 01:35 AM
What is the most effective way to get more clients? Lowballing seems to be pretty popular from what I observe. One guy and a cheap mower can pick up an entire neighborhood.

Ok, but seriously. College is a better choice.

Coming in a distant third is hard work, word of mouth, lots of sweat, a little savvy, flyers, newspaper ads, etc.

ShooterK2
05-13-2010, 09:33 AM
Am I seriously the ONLY person here that goes out early in the season and knocks on doors and asks politely if they have a lawn care provider for the season? I mean, I'm not trying to steal work, and I certainly don't lowball, but this has been a very effective means of gaining clients.

unkownfl
05-13-2010, 11:02 AM
Am I seriously the ONLY person here that goes out early in the season and knocks on doors and asks politely if they have a lawn care provider for the season? I mean, I'm not trying to steal work, and I certainly don't lowball, but this has been a very effective means of gaining clients.

If you do that here it would last about 3 houses. When I hang door hangers I have about 5 people in one sub to knock it out in like 10 mins because we get kicked out or yelled at every time its more of a PIA than a legal issue because they really can't do anything about it.

cgaengineer
05-13-2010, 11:14 AM
I mow in a thong which gets a ton of attention, 165 pounds of twisted steel and sex appeal. The ladies love it.
Posted via Mobile Device

Southern Lawn Maintenance
05-13-2010, 11:48 AM
What is the most effective way to get more clients? Lowballing seems to be pretty popular from what I observe. One guy and a cheap mower can pick up an entire neighborhood.

:laugh: lol i never seen this one coming

mowslot54
05-13-2010, 12:34 PM
what i did was at first posting something on craigslist saying "first mow for free to show you want i can do" you run into a bunch of people who just want it once and never talk to you again. so if you do that check it out first (neighborhood and such). word of mouth is still best. i got one account and ended up getting 3 more on the same block from just doing a good job. best of luck to you!:)

fiveoboy01
05-13-2010, 01:19 PM
Am I seriously the ONLY person here that goes out early in the season and knocks on doors and asks politely if they have a lawn care provider for the season? I mean, I'm not trying to steal work, and I certainly don't lowball, but this has been a very effective means of gaining clients.

I myself hate door to door salesmen, this is why I don't to this. It might be effective but I also feel it's a bit of a pressure type tactic because some people are too nice to say "get off my property".