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  #11  
Old 11-12-2001, 12:55 PM
kutnkru kutnkru is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: 93-04 (Zone5b) 05-now (Zone9a)
Posts: 2,662
I think that general census here would tell you to stay away from the calls.

Many many many people get so irritated by TGCL and various others for their mass marketing phone techniques and I think that your company would best serve potential clients with a flier. If you are going to selectively place your materials I would jot down the adresses and then later send them a letter after the Holiday season with another flyer/biz card.

I would think that you would be better served/productive just placing them at the doors. If someone comes out introduce yourself, and give them a brief summary of what your after. About three sentences, to maintain the KISS (keep.it.simple.stupid) format.

If you were to try the phone calls I would try calling during the weekday when they shouldnt be home and leave a brief message explaining that you didnt want to interupt their evenings so you thought it would be more of a courtesy to call while they were at work.

Kris
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  #12  
Old 11-12-2001, 12:55 PM
XOFMOT XOFMOT is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Fairfield County Connecticut
Posts: 161
BRENTSAWYER, I'm also in the same boat as you. I have an aggressive plan in place at this time for a seroius growth spurt for the 2002 season. From offering current customers discounted service rate for signed on refferals, to neighborhood discounts for streets with 2 or more routine service stops.
Yellow page advertising will also be taking affect and a continued advertising campain in my local newspapers "AT YOUR SERVICE" section. I tried the flyer route this past summer when I first started out, and with aprox. 3000 flyers out there I have had about a 1% positve response. Spent many hours and miles distributing flyers and I felt it was not a good return on investment. But at least I got my name out there! Good Luck!
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  #13  
Old 11-12-2001, 12:59 PM
TGCummings TGCummings is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Salinas, California
Posts: 773
Tom,

How is the response to your 'At Your Service' ad in the newspaper?

Thomas Cummings
Cummings Lawn & Garden
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  #14  
Old 11-12-2001, 01:06 PM
SprinklerGuy SprinklerGuy is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Scottsdale, Arizona/Colorado Springs, Colorado
Posts: 1,777
What we do is this.
We have a flyer/large sized postcard that we printed up with a spot for the name of the client that you already work for.


"we have a special offer for the neighbors of:__________"

that type of thing, it almost is a prequalifier, as if the neighbor is referring you. Seems to work well for us.

I also would NOT recommend a phone call, but I would recommend speaking with the neighbors any chance you get while working. May seem like a distraction but it is good publicity to be nice while you work.

I wish you success, it excites me to think of all these ideas. My problem is that I am so busy chasing existing clients there is not enough time to put most of this stuff into practice. I guess that may not seem like a problem but my motto is " to not grow, is to die" and I really believe that. Growth is not always measured by the amount of business you do but sometimes by the amount of new blood introduced to your business throughout the year. Just my .02
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  #15  
Old 11-12-2001, 01:12 PM
TGCummings TGCummings is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Salinas, California
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Hey Tony,

I agree with you whole-heartedly. When my wife was working full-time, I never seemed to have the time to implement any of these ideas, either. Now that's she's working with me it seems we have the time to be really aggressive about marketing. She's enjoying it, too.

Of course, in the interim, we're starving -- but that's a small price to pay for the benefits we hope to reap...

Thomas Cummings
Cummings Lawn & Garden
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  #16  
Old 11-12-2001, 01:19 PM
SprinklerGuy SprinklerGuy is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Scottsdale, Arizona/Colorado Springs, Colorado
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Your attitude and your wifes' involvment should carry you far! Congratulations on converting her, as for my wife, she wants no part in the business except my Disbursement checks of course.
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  #17  
Old 11-12-2001, 01:32 PM
David Haggerty David Haggerty is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: sw Ohio, Wilmington (the wettest place in the state)
Posts: 2,382
I've just came in from passing out ball point pens with my business name on them. I targeted #1 Existing customers, #2 desired accounts.

I'm solo so I really don't have the time to wade thru the crap calls that mass advertising brings in. Besides this spring I ran a newspaper add and didn't get a single new account from it.

So this year I'm trying direct targeting of new clients.

These are really nice pens from: National Pen, PO Box 740561, Atlanta, GA 30374-0561 http://www.orderpens.com/home_pens/

I'm recommending this company's promotional material because of the superior quality of the pens, plus their willingness to sell small orders without a severe price penalty.

If you get on their mailing list they'll send you a free sample with your name on it.

I'd ordered 200 of their colorama Image pens, and when they sent me a sample of their blue gloss lasergrip pen I ordered another 100 of them. These pens are nice enough I think people will keep them. We'll see next spring.

Dave
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  #18  
Old 11-12-2001, 03:40 PM
XOFMOT XOFMOT is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Fairfield County Connecticut
Posts: 161
TGCUMMINGS,
Have had very good success with the "AT YOUR SERVICE" section of my paper. It costs me $150.00 for a 30 day advertisment. The only problem is I get alot of "SLUM LORDS" calling. But overall, It has generated about 50% of my business
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  #19  
Old 11-12-2001, 04:03 PM
gogetter gogetter is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Yardley, PA.
Posts: 3,256
I too like to see the ideas flowing here.

Kutnkru: Would you happen to remember where you read/heard about the higher % rate for color flyers? Was it here on LS?

Also, I have to comment on the cold calls and door knocking thing. I for one can't stand calls when someone is trying to sell me something and I have a "no soliciting" sign on my door! Leave all the fliers you want at my door, I'll read them if I'm interested, but don't knock, and don't call me.

I know it's been said that LCO's need to be good salemen, but I'm no saleman! I couldn't knock on someones door and try to sell myself. I'll gladly say hi to a neighbor when I'm at an account, and maybe that will get a ball rolling, but that's about it.

I do kinda like the idea of targeting direct neighbors of existing accounts with a flyer or letter and including a quote. And mentioning that you do their neighbors lawn. I would love to more accounts closer together!

And along the line of the pen idea, I was considering magnets. Something that people will have around for a while and will see from time to time. I have stuff on my fridge that's been there for 2 years!

Or maybe even small calendars. These will be around and seen for at least a year
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  #20  
Old 11-12-2001, 04:10 PM
bruces bruces is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Independence, MO
Posts: 648
I am considering posting small signs "Lawn Mowing" and my phone number at the entrance to subdivisions I want to target.

I would have them professionally printed and post at the entrances.

Anyone tried anything like this?
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