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  #11  
Old 02-29-2012, 12:09 PM
mcw615 mcw615 is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Virginia
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Originally Posted by FLC2000 View Post
I send out letters to all my customers in early Feb letting them know whats new for the year, price increases, etc.

I let them when I expect to be starting which is around mid to late March and I also let them know we service on a year to year to basis with no renewal needed. Also if they want to cancel to do so by March 1st. If they choose to cancel after that we require 30 days notice.

Pretty simple. No need to complicate things.
Yes, that is what I used to do a few years back when my primary work was me solo simply just cutting grass. Under the maintenance side we have transitioned into all-inclusive property maintenance. I guess too my point is clients don't intend on signing with you for a period of one year only. When they hire your company they hire you until there is a reason to (budgets) to discontinue service or they are firing you. If you are highly focused on quality work and seeking to meet and exceed your clients expectations to truly ensure they are happy, you have a good year to year retention rate which has brought me to this...PAPERWORK REDUCTION! We all have our own way's and methods of operation our businesses, and some things work better for some than others.
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  #12  
Old 02-29-2012, 12:28 PM
FLC2000 FLC2000 is offline
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Location: Shawnee Kansas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcw615 View Post
Yes, that is what I used to do a few years back when my primary work was me solo simply just cutting grass. Under the maintenance side we have transitioned into all-inclusive property maintenance. I guess too my point is clients don't intend on signing with you for a period of one year only. When they hire your company they hire you until there is a reason to (budgets) to discontinue service or they are firing you. If you are highly focused on quality work and seeking to meet and exceed your clients expectations to truly ensure they are happy, you have a good year to year retention rate which has brought me to this...PAPERWORK REDUCTION! We all have our own way's and methods of operation our businesses, and some things work better for some than others.


I agree. At the same time Ive had people call me in early March to make sure we would still be servicing their property. I then have to explain to them that they dont need to call or renew and that we will be starting soon.

I started to do it because I got sick of the calls.

I only take care of about 50-60 properties weekly. I plan on getting off the mower this year and staying behind the desk at some point. Im sure as I grow I will stop wanting to take the time to send out the letters.
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  #13  
Old 02-29-2012, 12:51 PM
mcw615 mcw615 is offline
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Originally Posted by FLC2000 View Post
I agree. At the same time Ive had people call me in early March to make sure we would still be servicing their property. I then have to explain to them that they dont need to call or renew and that we will be starting soon.

I started to do it because I got sick of the calls.

I only take care of about 50-60 properties weekly. I plan on getting off the mower this year and staying behind the desk at some point. Im sure as I grow I will stop wanting to take the time to send out the letters.
Yes, and I have gotten a new customer or two when they call and say "there guy" normally calls in February to renew and they haven't heard from them and the grass will need to start being cut next week and they need mulching so they jump on our band wagon. As you said, it can get to be a hassle...the majority are going to continue using your service, and as long as you touch basis with them and ensure they are happy, you have no reason to hope and pray people renew and sit around checking the mail each day.

For my case, if it saves me time and the majority of my customers time and hassle...the one or two that want to gripe and say they want to see a new contract each year, well we can work that out or if they are fighting principle then they can just take a hike....the loyal customers are the one's you need to focus on and the majority of them just want it to be taken care of, they signed the contract from the start because they don't want to have to remember to call and have there mulching done, or there bushes cut, or to make sure you are cutting there lawn this year or do they need the hassle to try and find someone else.......it's better for the majority to say we're planning to do business for the long haul unless you write and let us know otherwise.
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  #14  
Old 02-29-2012, 12:59 PM
mcw615 mcw615 is offline
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Also, as you said about clients calling the first of March...touch basis, do a property check and leave a note on the door every three weeks in the winter. Send out a letter/newsletter in the mail in mid-January "checking in" and letting them know your intentions and what you have coming up schedule over the next couple weeks for early spring clean up etc. That way, they know it's being taken care of. You always need to be one step ahead. If not, a guy might knock on their door first of March before you have had a chance to contact them and they said, "well, my current contract expires at the end of the month and I have not exactly heard from them since my Christmas card...they must be too busy this year, sure let's do it." Instead, it's "sorry I already have a company that's been doing my lawn for years, there actually coming in about a week to have the mulch done and pick up some scattered leaves. Thanks anyway"
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  #15  
Old 02-29-2012, 02:01 PM
LB1234 LB1234 is offline
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its called an attorney. they'll get the words right
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  #16  
Old 02-29-2012, 02:52 PM
FLC2000 FLC2000 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcw615 View Post
Also, as you said about clients calling the first of March...touch basis, do a property check and leave a note on the door every three weeks in the winter. Send out a letter/newsletter in the mail in mid-January "checking in" and letting them know your intentions and what you have coming up schedule over the next couple weeks for early spring clean up etc. That way, they know it's being taken care of. You always need to be one step ahead. If not, a guy might knock on their door first of March before you have had a chance to contact them and they said, "well, my current contract expires at the end of the month and I have not exactly heard from them since my Christmas card...they must be too busy this year, sure let's do it." Instead, it's "sorry I already have a company that's been doing my lawn for years, there actually coming in about a week to have the mulch done and pick up some scattered leaves. Thanks anyway"

Not really a point in doing that with the amount of snow we get.

If there is no snow on the ground in late Dec/early Jan I usually head out and make sure nobody needs a final cleanup though but that hasnt been very often since Ive been doing this. Although this year we only got 3 inches all winter which is about 25 inches below normal.

I would like to start doing a newsletter though. I was also thinking about adding a seasonal tips page to my website and updating it once a month or so.
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