first year need help best ways to advertise

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by J&KLAWNSERVICE, Jan 14, 2007.

  1. J&KLAWNSERVICE

    J&KLAWNSERVICE LawnSite Member
    Posts: 40

    Hi,
    This is my first year of lawn business i havent had a customer yet becuase of winter and little snow, but i have been giving out alot of business cards to restraunts so far!! so hopefully people will grab them to get ready for spring!! who has any other ideas where to give out business cards cause im not gona do flyers just yet. But wat about Realtors offices like coldwell banker and there customers that are selling houses i could mow?????????? im not doing commercial my first year also!!! so any pointer would be appreaciated Thanks
     
  2. Grits

    Grits LawnSite Silver Member
    from Florida
    Posts: 2,994

    Since you mentioned realtors....I picked up one of those free magazines that are everywhere that has a ton of houses for sale in it and a bunch of realtor ads. Realtors love to put ALL their contact information in their ads. So I went through the mag and added all the email addresses to my email address book. I think around 60 adresses. I then typed up a professional sounding email, introducing myself and explaining what I could do for them....in as few words as possible. Sent out the email. I got a few responses back saying theye will keep my information on file. Some told me they were very thankful because it has been hard for them to keep up with lawn maintenance and one asked me to estimate her own yard. And best of all, it costs $0 to do this. Maybe about a total of an hours time. Just be careful with realtors and have them pay up front. I also think the business card holder can cards at the popular local restaurants is a good idea. I just started doing this. Matter of fact, I went to a restaurant tonight that I put my cards at....I put ten there to start with and there was only 5 there tonight. Less than a week later. It may not sound like much, But the only people that would take a card are people thinking about hiring an LCO. Also, put your cards and flyers up on gas station bulletin boards...most have a board for this. It's free, and i can't hurt to have a card and/or flyer up.
     
  3. LB1234

    LB1234 LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,210

    Be careful with realtors. You (most likely) won't be getting full-service accounts. You'll be getting phone calls to 'clean this place up so I can sell it' or ' I need to get the lawn cut before my clients move in' or 'can you remove this shed', etc., etc., etc.

    At least that is my experience. It has worked out well for us, don't get me wrong. BUT, nothing has ever turned into a full-servce contract. All one or two-time items.
     
  4. echeandia

    echeandia LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,131

    LB,

    Don't you charge a premium for these services? I certainly would.
     
  5. J&KLAWNSERVICE

    J&KLAWNSERVICE LawnSite Member
    Posts: 40

    has anyone tried putting a sign in a customer yard?
     
  6. StBalor

    StBalor LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 798


    If your not willing to pass out flyers yet what is stated above sounds like great advice. But in my experience the best form of advertizing is flyers and door hangers. Just be prepared to do alot of walking. And be prepared to sign people up on the spot. while passing out flyers if you meet the home owner in their yard and they need someone, they will most likely hire you cause you are there.
     
  7. J&KLAWNSERVICE

    J&KLAWNSERVICE LawnSite Member
    Posts: 40

    yea i will do flyers when the weather warms up! what about newspaper and little classified ads stuff like that
     
  8. DSLND

    DSLND LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,205

    This year was a whole new beginning for me. I had to basically start over due to split partnership (never doing that again) and it was like starting over. I started in March passing out flyers and putting cards up at Casey's and other local business's. I typed letters to realtors and contacted a few commercial properties. I ended up passing out about 200 flyers and then i got too busy to continue. About May i stopped advertising and Word Of Mouth took over completely. I ended up starting the season with 4 weekly customers and ended with 14 weekly. Then i wanted to really get into fall clean ups and get my back pack blower to pay for itself and it did. I did a business card ad in the local paper and for $100/Month i got around 16 clean ups and i would recieve at least one call a day with a maximum of four. This year i will be doing some flyers to advertise into landscaping and then do the newspaper ad. I plan on doing the ad all year but if i get as much work as i can handle then i will cancel it. Also i will be purchasing company shirts, signs for my trailer, and yard signs like the real estate agents have for landscaping job sites. Hope This Helps and Good Luck! -Mitch-
     
  9. J&KLAWNSERVICE

    J&KLAWNSERVICE LawnSite Member
    Posts: 40

    thanks!!!! since this is my first year starting i want to have alot of properties to mow!!! im thinking about typing a letter and pass them to my neighbors!! so far i have 2 push mowers blower all misc tools weedeater usual stuff like that i have 900 business cards sitting in my bedroom .. i cant wait till spring
     
  10. out4now

    out4now LawnSite Bronze Member
    from AZ
    Posts: 1,796

    Most will go with the flyers. Pick up Guerrilla Marketing by Jay Levinson. Should be at any library. Try and get them in front of people at least 3 times. It takes several times to get people to remember the name. Asses your competition and try to keep your route tight. Windshield time isn't profitable. If you're just starting read and read through all the old threads and there will be tons of stuff. There's one titled Tips and Tricks I think that has lots of good stuff in it. Several pages long. The search box will come in very handy. Good luck.
     

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