"I did it" lives on...

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Royallawncare, Jul 24, 2005.

  1. Royallawncare

    Royallawncare LawnSite Member
    Posts: 73

    During Recent weeks i have been very intrigued by the thread started by PTP who as many know started with a very strange business plan last season and has since been very successful. In a way he has shoved it right back in the faces of all the doubters. I too this year am planning on doing something very similar. I started my life in the lawncare business 5 years ago at the age of 12 when my uncle purchased 2 used aerators from a local dealer. He used these aerators one month out of the year as a side business and was able to make a few thousand each year off of them I was assigned to knock on doors pass out flyers and mark the sprinklers of the potential customers. I did this for a few years until he allowed me to run one of them full swing to help ease his load I was able to pick up a few maintenance contracts around my neighborhood at this time. The next summer my same uncle was able to pick up a few sprinkler repair jobs that he would often have me come along to earn more money. I am very mature both physically and mentally for my age. When i turned 16 and was able to drive my uncle expressed interest in getting rid of his aerators I immediately purchased them from him and paid them off 3 days they have since been a wonderful investment bringing in loads of money. With this increased interest in the industry i began an advertising campaign passing out flyers each day after school sadly enough i printed up over 2000 and only was able to pass out 900 of them because i became to swamped in my work to quickly with these 900 flyers i was able to aerate just a little over 600 properties and pick up 18 new mowing accounts i am now at 23 total weekly accounts i only aerate during the spring as i dont have time with my mowing to accomadate this service. I am a very busy person my family is very prominant in this area which has helped with my business. During this coming year i plan on adding 180 + full time accounts and hiring out my work I will become more efficient this way because of scheduling etc... I plan on purchasing a new truck stihl or redmax back pack blower and a new trimmer i have everything else for the new crews i will be hiring a crew leader and helper late january and begin advertising middle of February. I know this may be a little early to be planning for next year but i want to get a jump start so i will be prepared. I plan on running 2-3 man crews using minimal equipment and a high rate of customer satisfaction i believe i will be very successful this coming year please help me with my goals and bring on the criticism!
     
  2. Shuter

    Shuter LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,171

    Sounds good. Good luck.
     
  3. ALarsh

    ALarsh LawnSite Silver Member
    from Midwest
    Posts: 2,412

  4. Royallawncare

    Royallawncare LawnSite Member
    Posts: 73

    I am by no means a low baller my prices are very competitive i have done the research and have been turned down for being too high and often i have turned away service because i simply wont do it i have my "prototypical" lawn that i want for my routes. By "minimal equiptment" i meant that i am only using Honda 216 and 215 21" lawnmowers, stihl trimmers, a stihl edger, and a backpack blower I will never purchase a 48" or larger riding or wb they simply will not be cost effective to me.
     
  5. ALarsh

    ALarsh LawnSite Silver Member
    from Midwest
    Posts: 2,412

    Ok... so you didn't read the whole thread.
     
  6. PTP

    PTP LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Tulsa
    Posts: 1,383

    Good luck with your plans.

    But I must warn you, it is not easy. It may look easy when you are reading my posts on your computer but it is not.

    But it can be done. That is what sustained me especially in the beginning. I just kept telling my self "It has been done before."

    Planning and perseverance. You need both of these. If ever there was a key to success in this business, or any business, that is it.
     
  7. PTP

    PTP LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Tulsa
    Posts: 1,383

    Oh yeah, read the thread that Alarsh told you about - all of it. Take notes.
     
  8. tinman

    tinman LawnSite Bronze Member
    from ga
    Posts: 1,348

    I was gonna start a new thread ,but this is along the same lines as what I was going to mention. Has to do with marketing, brand name recognition, and quality.
    "Just mow it" approach is advertise like crazy & make it easy too call him & easy to get a price on the phone. There may be better "FULL SERVICE" companies in his area, but he obviously gets alot of work...2000+ accounts last I read. And I'm not saying his company does bad / cheap work. I'm just saying it looks like his main focus is advertising.
    What I was gonna mention was today at the MAll in Buford, me & the family were eating in the food court. My kids (picky eaters) had McDonald's & my wife & I had some sautaed chicken with vegatables, which was obviously better for us & just tasted better. What I noticed was the long line at Mcdonalds in the food court...which is about 1/2 fast food & 1/2 are "one level above fast food ( 1 meat 2 vegatable type places). And it seemed every other table had MCdonalds sacks on their table. And the meat & veg places all give out little samples of their meat,,,usually chicken...alll good to me. So folks know that it is good quality stuff. So what I got from all that is when given a choice people will choose lower quality (still ok food), more recognizable biz name over better quality, lesser known biz name a high % of the time. McDonalds has been pounded into our heads for years,,,no way anyone in America does not know about it. Point is marketing & advertising go a long way.
     
  9. Royallawncare

    Royallawncare LawnSite Member
    Posts: 73

    Thank you for the comments so far i am glad to see PTP following as of now him and TJ Justice are who i am looking to follow. Tinman that is a very valid and interesting point I believe there are 2 kinds of people in this industry mainly there is either those who just dont have the time or dont care about there lawn and just want it cut and there are those that live for their lawn and want it to look immaculate i figure i will stay away from the latter. I will let those who want run themselves ragged pulling weeds trimming bushes etc with there 9 man crews go to work i have found a more efficient low overhead way of operating I am not saying volume is the key there are certain levels of properties i am looking for i hope to get a good customer base so that i will be able to be a little picky about what i do and what i dont service.Until then i am about halfway through the post Alarsh reccomended thanks for the advice it is very much so along the lines of what i'm thinking. My first bridge to cross over will be going through all of the legal issues which i am looking into this week.
     
  10. Lawnworks

    Lawnworks LawnSite Fanatic
    from usa
    Posts: 5,407

    Much easier said than done. Good crew leaders are expensive and I have spent months training them to get every detail right. I would like to know exactly how you plan to add 180 accounts. I have spent about 20k on advertising this year and have added 30-40 quality accounts(5k-7k a month). I don't see how you can achieve that much growth w/o spending 100k on advertising.
     

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