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View Full Version : How to get 30-40 new accounts


pickupman96
03-15-2011, 01:53 PM
I am looking to get 30-40 new accounts this year, I have 7500 postcard going out in the next week or two, a ad the size of two cards in the local paper for the next 3 months and a ad next to the newspaper name on the top of every web page for april and may. Do you guys think with that its possible or no.

aarons lawn
03-15-2011, 06:44 PM
no most people that you send post cards to dont call you to mow there lawn ive tried that i sent 5k n got 3 lawns they want other stuff if u get 10 i think u did good

tradeyouraccounts
03-16-2011, 03:42 AM
Try networking with a non competitor maybe like a cleaning company or pest control company, Pool service company maybe you can network your'e services to each others clients. Its free and most people that use one service are likely to use another.

CLS LLC
03-16-2011, 05:26 PM
You'd have to put out closer to 40,000 flyers to get 30-40 lawn mowing customers. Like aarons lawn said alot of the calls will be for other things like aerations, dethatchings, fertilizations, weed control and the like. A realistic number for response rate on flyers is less than .5%. So out of your 7500 flyers you might get 30 calls. Of those 30 calls, 15 of them will be looking for services other than mowing. And of those 15 looking for mowing 7-8 will go with a different company (for any number of reasons). That's what I'm predicting at least.

These people who claim 1-2% response ratio's must be REALLY good at making a good looking flyer, because I've done my best to give a call to action and had mine professionally designed and have never seen results anywhere near that. I think a response ratio of .5% is pretty good.

Good luck to you, and get a website if you don't have one yet. It was by far the cheapest and most effective marketing I have done to date. But you have to make it nice and optimize it well for the search engines, otherwise it is worthless.

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walker-talker
03-26-2011, 10:47 AM
NicholasMWhite is pretty much spot on....at least is what I would think. I did 10K flyers and picked up 7 accounts. I still have a few estimates out there that may come in before mowing starts. Just remember...if mowing is what you want, you need to market for THAT service. My flyers and signs were cleary designed to advertise for mowing and that is what I got the majority of my calls for. A few years ago I did a postcard campaign and received about a 1.7% response rate, but my postcard listed all my services and thats what I received calls on. I only pick up 4 mowing accounts.

Kelly's Landscaping
03-26-2011, 07:57 PM
Depending on the look of the cards and how well you screened your mailing list before hand you ought to get a 1-2 % hit ratio. I'm not going to give away marketing secrets especially cause your close by but were also doing 7000-8000 post cards and from past mailings we know that will generate 75 accounts plus.

Keep the cards simple and to the point if mowing and fertilizer is the core of your business then that's what you push. You don't want calls for bs services we got one every year it seemed for replacing a bush from plow damage though insurance hehehehehe yea no thank you next.

JFGauvreau
03-26-2011, 08:16 PM
You'd have to put out closer to 40,000 flyers to get 30-40 lawn mowing customers. Like aarons lawn said alot of the calls will be for other things like aerations, dethatchings, fertilizations, weed control and the like. A realistic number for response rate on flyers is less than .5%. So out of your 7500 flyers you might get 30 calls. Of those 30 calls, 15 of them will be looking for services other than mowing. And of those 15 looking for mowing 7-8 will go with a different company (for any number of reasons). That's what I'm predicting at least.

These people who claim 1-2% response ratio's must be REALLY good at making a good looking flyer, because I've done my best to give a call to action and had mine professionally designed and have never seen results anywhere near that. I think a response ratio of .5% is pretty good.

Good luck to you, and get a website if you don't have one yet. It was by far the cheapest and most effective marketing I have done to date. But you have to make it nice and optimize it well for the search engines, otherwise it is worthless.

Ya this year I sent out 2.5k post cards, better than last year which was 0. But I'm only offering services like aeration, dethatching, fertilizing, top dressing, over seeding etc. Hopefully I will get a bunch of calls.

Kelly's Landscaping
03-26-2011, 08:18 PM
9 years ago we did letters using something we bought from Sean at this site and actually saw 3-7% hit ratios. And when your first start out that's huge granted the letters promised the moon and got us some accounts we wished we never met. We had high end cotton paper an envelopes with our own letterhead on each and a business card in each. The point is you can get better the .5% this is one part of the business you need to put time into and get right. Advertising is probably about the only area left to us to save money these days iv shopped about everything else. So we don't just hap haphazardly do advertising we track what worked and what didn't.

JFGauvreau
03-26-2011, 08:30 PM
9 years ago we did letters using something we bought from Sean at this site and actually saw 3-7% hit ratios. And when your first start out that's huge granted the letters promised the moon and got us some accounts we wished we never met. We had high end cotton paper an envelopes with our own letterhead on each and a business card in each. The point is you can get better the .5% this is one part of the business you need to put time into and get right. Advertising is probably about the only area left to us to save money these days iv shopped about everything else. So we don't just hap haphazardly do advertising we track what worked and what didn't.

Ya, but a lot of it has to do with timing and believe it or not weather.

I do mainly door to door sales, as for me, it has been proven to be the best, its free, a bit hard on the legs at the end of the day, but it pays off more than any other advertising I do.

The first nice sunny weekend of spring, when everyone is outside trying to figured out what to do with their lawn, and I pass on the street offering great services for their lawn, my rate is almost 25%. But those are just 1 time service and not anything like a mowing contract for the season.

But same scenario, same weekend, but it's raining or cloudy, everyone are inside watching tv, it's totally not the same. Probably more like a 5% on that weekend.

grassmasterswilson
03-26-2011, 09:06 PM
I think it depends on your market and competition and size of your mailer area. I'm not going to argue with the 1%+ response rate, but I've never seen that in the 5 or 6 mailers I've done over the last 4 years.

Mailers are by far my best way of picking up customers, but I'm more in the 0.5% or less range. I've got nice shiny cards with a great layout. I have about 5k going out in the next week or so. I will keep everyone posted with the success rate.

Kelly's Landscaping
03-26-2011, 10:11 PM
Ya, but a lot of it has to do with timing and believe it or not weather.

I do mainly door to door sales, as for me, it has been proven to be the best, its free, a bit hard on the legs at the end of the day, but it pays off more than any other advertising I do.

The first nice sunny weekend of spring, when everyone is outside trying to figured out what to do with their lawn, and I pass on the street offering great services for their lawn, my rate is almost 25%. But those are just 1 time service and not anything like a mowing contract for the season.

But same scenario, same weekend, but it's raining or cloudy, everyone are inside watching tv, it's totally not the same. Probably more like a 5% on that weekend.

No your right weather is huge iv not sent out my post cards their stamped and ready to go. And why not well lets see we had a late snow storm 2 days ago its gone but today's high temp was like 37 degrees with 25 mph winds. If people don't feel comfortable out side they don't think about outside which sucks for us cause its our business. The window we work with is about 6 weeks that's it we sign up 95% of all new work for the entire year in just 6 weeks so timing is critical.

CLS LLC
03-27-2011, 01:32 AM
Weather definitely plays a large part in it and timing is everything but no matter how perfect the weather and timing is I still don't think I'll ever see anything better than .5% in my market. That's not to say it can't be done in your market. If it can be done, that's awesome. I envy you but I don't think people should be expecting numbers like that.

JFGauvreau
03-27-2011, 10:05 AM
Weather definitely plays a large part in it and timing is everything but no matter how perfect the weather and timing is I still don't think I'll ever see anything better than .5% in my market. That's not to say it can't be done in your market. If it can be done, that's awesome. I envy you but I don't think people should be expecting numbers like that.

The .5%+ is only for door to door, the rest, newspaper, yellow pages, door hangers etc is definitely in the range, even like you said you have good timing and incredible weather.

meets1
03-27-2011, 12:38 PM
To me go buy someone out. All the money spent advertising, papers, postcards, flyers, radio - save the money and buy someone out.

Yes I do advertise but nothing like in years past. Sponcer some school events/auctions, a spot or two now and then on the radio. A quick 2 week ad in the paper to keep our name out there.

I go throughout the year. I don;t go heavy in spring and eat thru budget for remaiing summer, fall, winter.

I also find numbers to be discouraging. Send out 1000 and get 100 calls and get maybe 10 jobs. 1 job maybe worth the hassle.

Gone Green
03-27-2011, 01:47 PM
Consider gearing your campaign to reach prospects around existing routes AND as many as 8 impressions per prospect. This method can be built around any marketing budget.

One impression is they see your trucks. Impression 2 is the doorhanger you left them. 3 is the spring postcard. 4 is the google search result that produced your website. 5th impression is the door to door sales. 6th impression is the lawn flag or road sign they saw driving home. 7th impression is the summer postcard. 8th is when they start calling you.

The above is just a possible scenario. Obviously You do not control when they search on google, drive by your sign, read your postcard etc. However the important idea is to get 7 or more impressions. Once you reach that level people remember you when they are ready to be a customer on the market (and in their mind you have a brand !)

PM me if you want the webinar slides. There is very compelling data about the impact of 7-8 impression It's not my webinar or anything I don't do marketing consulting. But a lot of my colleagues grow their green industry businesses this way.

Gone Green
03-27-2011, 02:02 PM
Buying a competing company's accounts for a good price is less risky than marketing because you should know what you are going to get. It happens much faster than building 8 impressions. You can seller finance a small acquisition, you can't do the same with a marketing campaign. I agree with that suggestion by Meets1.

I have free resource for this specifically for the green industry. It's a significant tool for those that can work it into their organic marketing, worth finding out more.

JFGauvreau
03-27-2011, 02:14 PM
Buying a competing company's accounts for a good price is less risky than marketing because you should know what you are going to get. It happens much faster than building 8 impressions. You can seller finance a small acquisition, you can't do the same with a marketing campaign. I agree with that suggestion by Meets1.

I have free resource for this specifically for the green industry. It's a significant tool for those that can work it into their organic marketing, worth finding out more.

In other words, most consumers need to see a company logo 8+ times before they remember it, so that when they think about "Lawn" the first thing that comes up to their mind is the company they saw 8+ times.

bohiaa
03-28-2011, 03:25 AM
funny how this will work there, and that will work over here.

it's always been hard to guess what the public will do, BUT YES, IT's possable.

let us know how it turned out for you, and by all means, ask the customer what worked for them, take this information and use it in the future.

Best of luck

zopi
03-28-2011, 10:11 AM
Spent a few years as a Navy Recruiter...wanna talk tough sales..sucked, but I learned alot..Unless you have large resources available, mass mailings are only going to generate 1-2% return..and the quality of client is often not great..as you are out and about, take some notes..write down addresses of homes with butt ugly yards but which otherwise display signs of affluence..very often these folks are too busy to maintain greenspace, but they would like to spend what little free time they have out in a nice yard..hit them with a targeted mailer..wait a couple days..or the next time you are mowing in that area, do a drive by, knock on the door..no answer, take a yellow stickywrite sorry I missed you..stick a business card to the door..only takes minutes, and targeted mailing is a bit better producer..but..there is no substitute for boots on the ground personal contact..the grip and grin..of course the industry standard is to offer free estimates, you may offer another incentive for first service or contract subscription service..
Best thing going though is a happy customer..statisitcally speaking, a person who has a positive experience is going to tell 2-5 people, a person who is unhappy will tell 10-25 people..the numbers suck..but happy customers make more customers..

Google Guerilla marketing...live it and breathe it.

zopi
03-28-2011, 10:13 AM
Oh...EVERY TIME...you enter a business, or meet someone, or help an old lady acrosss a street..offer a professional looking business card..in the pocket, they cost, in someone else's hand..they earn.

bstsrvcs
03-31-2011, 05:47 AM
I've read all of the various marketing strategies on this site. All the time-tested stuff is here. 1 of my methods gets a good 12-15% every time I do it and I've not seen 1 person here, Gopher or elsewhere bring this up. I really wonder when I am going to hear of someone else doing what I'm doing.

8 impressions, imho, is a waste of money and resources. We're mowing lawns, not running for Governor ;)

johnnyhem
04-01-2011, 10:59 AM
I tried the Valpak, cost $850 for a full color mailer, now im locked in for 2 months another $850 i got 3 calls from about 20k - 30k+ ads in 4 zip codes from 1 mailing. not doing that again, i get more calls just posting on Craigs list. and thats free! I get most my customers from word of mouth, thats the best advertisement you can get.

CLS LLC
04-01-2011, 11:03 AM
I've read all of the various marketing strategies on this site. All the time-tested stuff is here. 1 of my methods gets a good 12-15% every time I do it and I've not seen 1 person here, Gopher or elsewhere bring this up. I really wonder when I am going to hear of someone else doing what I'm doing.

8 impressions, imho, is a waste of money and resources. We're mowing lawns, not running for Governor ;)

well, lets hear it...

PostcardMania
04-25-2011, 05:21 PM
I am looking to get 30-40 new accounts this year, I have 7500 postcard going out in the next week or two, a ad the size of two cards in the local paper for the next 3 months and a ad next to the newspaper name on the top of every web page for april and may. Do you guys think with that its possible or no.

I know I'm late on the chain, but thought I'd give my two cents...

This is a great campaign you've put together, the only thing you need to be aware of is that just one mailing won't make leads pour in. Just like any form of marketing, it's a continuous effort... you should repeat your mailing to the same list at least two more times.

Different people respond at different speeds, so if you're not staying in front of those who take longer to respond (who probably threw out your postcard), you're potentially losing those leads.

Have you registered your biz on all the local search engines? If not, you should definitely do that! What does this do? You know when you type in Google "landscaper tampa, fl" (or wherever your location is) and a list of businesses pop up? Well when you register on these sites, such as Google, your business will pop up within the search. The company I work for created a report that has a list of all the URLs to sign your business up, you can get this report for free here: http://bit.ly/gR3zsh

Hope this helps you out, let me know if you have any other questions on direct mail or marketing in general, I'm happy to help :)

kyfireman2004
08-05-2011, 11:39 PM
Best post of this thread.......




Consider gearing your campaign to reach prospects around existing routes AND as many as 8 impressions per prospect. This method can be built around any marketing budget.

One impression is they see your trucks. Impression 2 is the doorhanger you left them. 3 is the spring postcard. 4 is the google search result that produced your website. 5th impression is the door to door sales. 6th impression is the lawn flag or road sign they saw driving home. 7th impression is the summer postcard. 8th is when they start calling you.

The above is just a possible scenario. Obviously You do not control when they search on google, drive by your sign, read your postcard etc. However the important idea is to get 7 or more impressions. Once you reach that level people remember you when they are ready to be a customer on the market (and in their mind you have a brand !)

PM me if you want the webinar slides. There is very compelling data about the impact of 7-8 impression It's not my webinar or anything I don't do marketing consulting. But a lot of my colleagues grow their green industry businesses this way.

C.D.L.
08-06-2011, 02:03 AM
post on craigslist. completely free. in the spring i posted every other day and gained 25 new accounts pretty much one a day. its august now and last post was in very early june, still getting called even tho its way less frequent. people do use it and you cant beat the cost wich equates to 10 mins in front of your computer a couple times a week.

2brothersyardcare
08-06-2011, 10:38 AM
9 years ago we did letters using something we bought from Sean at this site and actually saw 3-7% hit ratios. And when your first start out that's huge granted the letters promised the moon and got us some accounts we wished we never met. We had high end cotton paper an envelopes with our own letterhead on each and a business card in each. The point is you can get better the .5% this is one part of the business you need to put time into and get right. Advertising is probably about the only area left to us to save money these days iv shopped about everything else. So we don't just hap haphazardly do advertising we track what worked and what didn't.

you got the new dodge and you just mow with it?

larryinalabama
08-06-2011, 11:17 AM
I searousluy thought of taking my truck to home depoit on a saturday and pass out flyers in front of the garden center, never tried it though

ptjackson
08-08-2011, 03:47 PM
What about using different social media tools? I'm sure most everyone has at least a facebook. What about featuring a different project each week with the hope that person shares with their friends? Maybe a weekly post that is something funny that happened on the job just to get people to reshare and get your name out there. It's super successful for many local eateries so why can't it be for landscaping.

Not sure what would work but social media is word of mouth on steroids. Give them a reason to share and they will.