advertising question....

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Carolina Cuts, Oct 12, 2004.

  1. Carolina Cuts

    Carolina Cuts LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,152

    long story short.. was in the business for nine years... age 16 - 25. Before I got out of it... against my will... I had 80'some residential accounts. 98% of em' came from word of mouth... Although I put out hundreds of flyers I would have to say I got one or two calls from every 500 flyers. Of course the one or two calls is what lead to word of mouth customers. THEN I didn't take the business serious... it was fun for a 17 year old kid to go out and make $800.00/week cash. But eventually I got burned out. Six years later, I'm starting to buy some new equipment.. (Snapper 52" z-turn) and Im preparing to start up again in a totally different state. I DON'T WANNA PASS OUT FLYERS!!! so the question is.... what's the most effective advertising for this business... besides word of mouth. In otherwords, how does one go about getting lotsa calls right away...??? Was thinkin' quarter page local news paper ads... naturally, business cards everywhere... maybe a mass mailer???
     
  2. lqmustang

    lqmustang LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 620

    I use my local paper. They have a business directory in the classified section, and I'll put in an ad that is slightly larger (longer) than the rest to get noticed. Bold print helps also. While I didn't keep count, I probably got about 60 or so calls for every 30 days I ran my ad. Timing is key tho. I start the ad about 2 weeks before the season really kicks in, and then run it for 2-3 months depending on how much business I am looking to add.
     
  3. Carolina Cuts

    Carolina Cuts LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,152

    Cool... thanks for the info. In the past, I never tried the newspaper. Here's another question.... is it worth it to place an ad now for fall clean ups...just to try and line up some cuts for next season?
     
  4. lqmustang

    lqmustang LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 620

    It's never too late to start. That is, unless the snow is flying. I started my fall ad one week ago, and so far have gained 2 mow customers, 2 leaf removal customers, 1 snow plowing job, and will be giving a quote tomorrow for another plow job. Well worth the $127 I paid for the ad, and I still have 3 weeks left for it to run.
     
  5. buddhacj7

    buddhacj7 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 54

    What exactly did your say? other than plowing, I live in SC and we don't do that around here.
     
  6. Team Gopher

    Team Gopher LawnSite Platinum Member
    from -
    Posts: 4,041

    Hi Carolina Cuts,

    Many times we see on this forum the response rate for flyers and direct mailings to be very similar. The low single digit response %.
     
  7. lqmustang

    lqmustang LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 620

    My current ad is pretty simple, all in bold for the ad..........

    (10/7/2004) Classified Connection
    JASON’s LAWN SERVICE
    Mowing, leaf removal,
    aeration, snow plowing.
    Call today for a free
    estimate: 330-xxx-xxxx


    My spring ad......

    Jason's Lawn Service

    Accepting new customers throughout Perry, Canton, and surrounding areas for mowing, mulching, edging, and cleanups. Get professional results at a competitive price. Call 330-xxx-xxxx or 330-xxx-xxxx today for a free quote.


    Despite all my good luck with the ads, next year I will likely try the door hangar route to try to increase coverage in certain areas. The big downside to the newspaper ad is that you don't have any control over the areas you get calls in. It's been very nice to build over the last 2 years, but now I need to increase route density in certain areas, and weed out other areas to keep building.
     
  8. buddhacj7

    buddhacj7 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 54

    Anyone know how to go about doing a mass mailer? Would you go to a printshop and have them made up and then take to post office?
     
  9. buckeyes04

    buckeyes04 LawnSite Member
    from Ohio
    Posts: 21

    About what month does the season kick in?
     
  10. lqmustang

    lqmustang LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 620


    I've started cutting the first week of April every year so far. I try to start doing spring cleanups a week or 2 before that, weather permitting.
     

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