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  #1  
Old 11-17-2012, 09:04 PM
GreenGuysLC GreenGuysLC is offline
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Looking for a supplier

I have read many threads, but no one really seems to mention their supplier. Who are you using, are there fees, and are you pretty satisfied? Getting my feet wet here and trying to get some useful insight.
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  #2  
Old 11-17-2012, 11:55 PM
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GreenI.A. GreenI.A. is offline
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The Holiday lighting section is pretty good at protecting our sources. Those of us who participate in this forum are dedicated companies who have worked hard to build this niche of the business. If you read through a lot of the threads then I am sure you also noticed that the posters seam to be from larger more successful proven companies for the most part. Unlike the other sections of lawnsite that has more fly by night companies than anything else. One of the big reasons I can compete in my market is because I am offering higher quality products that I purchase at wholesale pricing. Ninety percent of my competitors are purchasing their products of the shelf at homedepot or walmart.

We try our best not to give away to much info here, that is why you will very rearly see anyone post prices they pay. We don't need our competitors or customers googling us and finding threads here were we sy we pay XX for this, and the customer sees we charged them xxx for it.

As far as tthe way wholesallers are, there are a number of different formats they fallow. Some such as HD/HBL charge you a one time fee to join their company. CD is a franchise company and you must purchase a franchise from them. The good thing with both of these companies is that they also have marketting on their own sites that will direct potential customers to you for proposals. Then there are a number of companies that sell online with out you paying for access. Some of these companies sell only in bulk, others with sell any quantity. I would recomend not putting all your eggs in one basket and to purchase from multiple sources. We have a prefered vendor for c9&c7's, a different vendor for wreaths and garland, etc. We also have a completely different vender for extension cords, timers, and other electrical suplies, those we purchase from an electrical wholesaler.

If you keep reading the threads in this section you will find the names of the different vendors have been used quite alot.
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  #3  
Old 11-18-2012, 12:49 AM
GreenGuysLC GreenGuysLC is offline
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  #4  
Old 11-18-2012, 12:57 AM
GreenGuysLC GreenGuysLC is offline
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Well....first off let me say....this site is worthless if you arent willing to share ideas. I too am a very successful business owner and am considering branching out into something that is currently not offered here. I didnt nor would i ask for your pricing....i simply ask for some vendors you have had success with...kind of like to you prefer john deere over exmark???? A vendor name doesnt give away any trade secret... you are right i can google and search the hundreds of threads here....but again...without reinventing the wheel....i ask who you had good luck with. We could all provide good quality service at better prices and make more if we shared tips..techniques...and yes...even vendors. Professionals are gonna bid what the job is worth....not what the wholesale price was. So when people throw this line of bs at me....i just question how successful they really are....or are they just another low baller?
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Old 11-18-2012, 01:23 AM
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GreenI.A. GreenI.A. is offline
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i'm not trying to be a d***, I only offer quality product. When I go to meet with a potential client I bring along a number of samples. The big thing that sells our product is the product itself. When the client sees the quality of the lights, or how lifelike our garland and wreaths are, that sets us apart from our competition. I don't need my competition coming on here and finding the names of my supplier, the day that happens I loose a big leg up I have.

You do not have to read much on here to find names of the suppliers we use. I quickly looked at the threads and the first five pages have the names of all of the big suppliers. I didn't open any of the threads, the names of the suppliers are clearly in the titles.

Like I said, I'm not trying to be a ****. But there are certain things a number of us in the lighting forum feel we don't think should be done here. For an example, one of the top posters here who is one of the most knowledgable guys posting in this section has stopped posting as much as he doesn't want the information coming up when his name is googled. While you may think it isn't a big deal it is. You may think Guy A isn't posting because of what Guys B,C,D are posting, how does that effect me? It effects my business, it effects my wallet. That knowledgable guy's posts have given many here a wealth of knowledge that we use daily to start, grow, and sustain our businesses.
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  #6  
Old 11-18-2012, 08:03 AM
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turf hokie turf hokie is offline
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Green explained it very well.

To the OP, this site is far from useless....unless you are looking for a handout.

You can find vendor information on here, much to my dismay mind you. I spent the better part of 6 years playing around with different vendors, searching, calling etc. and I still am today. Why would I take all that time I spent and just post it on here for all to see?

To explain a little more, I already have more competetion than I care for. This business is a far cry from cutting grass...

A) does the customer care if you use a john deere or exmark? no, that is your preference....does the mower you use change the look of the cut? nope....

Does the material you use in Christmas decorating change the look of the job, of course. Does the customer care if you use 10" garland? 14" garland? with pine cones? without? do you c-9's have a blue tint or are they true warm white? sure they do....do you see where the material will seperate you out from the competition?

B) does everyone need their lawn cut...of course...does everyone want Christmas Lights? NOPE....to give you an idea, my area is 30% Jewish, so that means out of the gate I have 1/3 less potential customers than you do for cutting the grass....

C) There is one of the posters on here that just got a taste of what I had been preaching... be careful with the information that is shared on here, someone may be on the other side of the country from you, but that person may be in someone elses backyard....he just had someone start doing lights because of the information found on here....1 mile away from him.

It is hard enough to get new customers and retain old ones, my competetion has at least tripled since I started, and as I said the potential customer base is infinitley smaller than the grass cutting customer base, so forgive us if we hold our cards a little closer to our chest...

All that being said, you should already know about the primary suppliers just from a 2 minute search on here and about 10 minutes of reading.
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  #7  
Old 11-18-2012, 10:20 AM
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GreenI.A. GreenI.A. is offline
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turf made a good point that I missed. I mainly stressed my concearn about information being seen on here by my competitors or customers. But even private messaging can hurt us. Say a guy in NYC starts asking the same questions as you, I could private message him and give him all the info he needs, doesn't effect my business at all, my competition doesn't see it. But it does further saturate Turf's market and can potentially hurt him. Out of respect I wouldn't do that, and I would hope for the same in return.

Guys ask plenty of questions on here, they ask for opinions on what you would do for this or that. And they get plenty of different answers from guys with years of experience. Look in the threads and you will see people saying things such as "use LL's from HD (or guys in NE)". Like we both said it wont take long for you to pick up the few abbreviations we use.
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Why do people not respect us as they do other tradesmen? Because every Tom, Dick, and Harry doesn't think he can be a plumber or electrician!
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  #8  
Old 11-18-2012, 10:31 AM
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GreenI.A. GreenI.A. is offline
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Turf - have you tried marketting directly to the Jewish Community? I did it last year and had great success. We did marketting material with pictures of a house with only white and blue lights, with a Menorah and stars. Obviously they tend to stear away from Red & Green lights and don't want a 12' 3d Santa in the lawn. We got the add into a number of local synagogues' pamphlets. And in towns with large Jewish populations we did this spesical postcard. Feed back was great, a number of homeowners commented that they never would have thought of it, and liked the fact that they could fit in in the neighborhood during the holiday season to. Just thought that is something you might want to consider
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Why do people not respect us as they do other tradesmen? Because every Tom, Dick, and Harry doesn't think he can be a plumber or electrician!
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  #9  
Old 11-19-2012, 05:11 AM
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addictedtolandscaping addictedtolandscaping is offline
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Hokie is completely right. People are one minute asking simple questions, then you led into who to talk to on and on. Then low and behold they are in your back yard or someone else.

I have seen the numerous threads on here over the years, and this has always been a point driven by the senior guys. There are numerous threads on here with suppliers names and contacts. There are thread that get into issues with supplies products, recommended products on and on.

When I first joined this site and started this journey, there were pages per day on here of posts. It took me weeks to read all the threads, then reread them. The information was beyond abundant. It has quieted immensely in comparison.

As Hokie said, the market is notably smaller with Christams Lighting or Holiday Lighting, than grass chopping. Look around at how many fly by nights are running around chopping grass, then look at how many real lawn/landscape companies there are. The number of fly by nights grows every year. As hokie pointed out, people don;t care what you use to chop grass, just as long as it gets done and looks nice. With lighting, you are creating a visual statement, fancy equipment won;t get it done, and it is not required. The start up costs are even lower in this business as far as what you "have to have" to do it.
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  #10  
Old 11-19-2012, 06:53 AM
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turf hokie turf hokie is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GreenI.A. View Post
Turf - have you tried marketting directly to the Jewish Community? I did it last year and had great success. We did marketting material with pictures of a house with only white and blue lights, with a Menorah and stars. Obviously they tend to stear away from Red & Green lights and don't want a 12' 3d Santa in the lawn. We got the add into a number of local synagogues' pamphlets. And in towns with large Jewish populations we did this spesical postcard. Feed back was great, a number of homeowners commented that they never would have thought of it, and liked the fact that they could fit in in the neighborhood during the holiday season to. Just thought that is something you might want to consider
We have, no success. I will pm you later with why I think we wont crack that market....
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