How important is advertising

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by rutwad, Aug 26, 2006.

  1. rutwad

    rutwad LawnSite Member
    from Alabama
    Posts: 179

    I know everyone needs advertising, but how much. Do you figure a percentage of Gro$$, have a set amount, or what. Starting in a new business is expensive and I can see how people would take short cuts to save money. So how big of a part of a new business should be put into advertising?
    Has anybody ever used radio advertising?

    Thanks in advance:usflag:
     
  2. WJW Lawn

    WJW Lawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,330

    Radio alone wont work...but if you combine it with the yellow pages or Newspaper it's more effective. But the alternative would be flyers or even door to door. Before lawn care I worked in Radio...and know for a fact you have to combine it.
     
  3. garth1967

    garth1967 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 640

    really it depends on your budget .there is so many ways to advertise.can you be more specific
     
  4. rutwad

    rutwad LawnSite Member
    from Alabama
    Posts: 179

    yep, just about to take the plunge and buy a skid steer with mulcher head attachment. It is a large investment and I feel there is definitely use for it. But I need to find the best way to let people realize the services I can perform with this machine.
     
  5. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,927

    A big generalization here with this assertion. It depends on how large you wish to grow and what rate. A solo operator primarily doing mowing should never need to spend any direct money on advertising.

    I started 10 seasons ago, work solo, have more work than I can handle. I bought an ad 10 years ago, ran it one time, got six customers, and have never spent another dime. I have no marketing brochure, only a simple business card with name and phone number. For me, my advertising is the "brochure" I leave on every property worked -- the quality of the job being done and the relationship built with the people. This advertising costs a bit of time on a few occasions, but is worth much in getting word-of-mouth referrals, or gaining customers in the same neighborhood. Clearly, this will not work for those intending to build to hundreds of customers, so the initial question needs better definition.
     
  6. PMLAWN

    PMLAWN LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,535

    Ah- have you ever heard the saying-- putting the cart before the horse.
    What info do you have that supports your "feelings".
    Before you buy any tools you need to know exactly where and how you will use them and what kind of demand there is and what kind of income the demand will pay out, Than decide what the ROI will be-- Doing this will produce the advertizing path that you need to take as you will have already pin pointed the customer and their needs. At that point all you have to do is contact them again with the info that you are ready to answer the needs
     
  7. Poncho25

    Poncho25 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 369

    I put forth a business plan before I actaully started which was about 3 months ago now. Part of that plan was a set budget for advertisment, and its already paid for itself 10x over!! ATM i am at 26 accounts solo and will probably not take on to much more till next season.
     
  8. Total.Lawn.Care

    Total.Lawn.Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 841

    I would say that before you make the investment in the purchase, find the same equipment available for renting (or Demo from the dealer you intend to purchase from) and go ahead and advertise the sevices. This way, you can begin to get your name out with this available service and start to receive some work in the process. Each time you take a job, us the earnings from that job to pay the rental, and put some aside for the purchase. Then by the time you are ready to make the purchase, you will already have work comming in demanding that machine and it will be making you money, rather than sitting in the yard costing you a $800 a month payment and nto making you any money.

    On a smaller scale, I am going to do the same thing. I am looking into offering pressure washing as an additional service to help supplement cash flow in the winter and bring additional customers during the season. I have already started to advertise this service, although I do not have a pressure washer. But I will rent the pressure washing equipment from the dealer that I intend to buy from as I get business for pressure washing. If I decide to continue the pressure washing, I will already have enough money to probably pay for about 1/2 of the cost of the equipment and then only have to finance the balance.
     

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