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Those of you who have changed your name..

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Expert Lawns, Jul 8, 2004.

  1. Expert Lawns

    Expert Lawns LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,660

    There are many negative things about changing a business name. I am also aware that there are reasons for it too. I was wondering what some of those are. For those of you that have changed your name in the past, why and how did you do it? If people change their business name to run from problems or to hide their bad practices then of course that would be wrong. I would like to hear some other reasons for changing your name.

    I have been considering a name change for three reasons:

    1. I just simply do not like my name. I had to pick it at the last second because the one I wanted was already taken.

    2. I would like to project the fact that we offer other services than just lawn care.

    3. Almost everyone around here has "so and so's LAWN CARE" as their name and I think something without 'lawn care' in it would be different.

    By changing my name from "Expert Lawn Care" to "Professional Property Management", I believe that it would let people know that we provide full property maintenance. This would especially cater to commercial accounts. Professional Property Management would coincide a bit better with keeping the sidewalks and parking lots cleaned, mowing the lawn, plowing the snow, trimming the hedges...whatever it takes to keep that property looking spectacular.

    I believe this would be a good move and I am slowly but seriously considering it. My main concerns are for my current customers. What will they think I am doing? They might think my name change is for negative reasons or that I have merged with another company and they will not be receiving the same great service anymore. I would have to take care of my customers first. Either with letters or telephone calls reassuring them and explaining to them the reason.

    What have you guys done in this situation? Or, for those of you who haven't done this....what WOULD you do?? by the way, do you like the new name?
  2. Turf Medic

    Turf Medic LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,073

    First of all when I see a name property management I think of someone that manages rentals, you know takes the rent, does repairs etc.

    If you really want to change the name, I would send letters out to all of your current customers telling them about the name change. I would explain it by telling them that as your business has grown and will continue to grow by adding more services, you want a name that represents more of what your company does. I would also reassure them that you are not going anywhere and they will still reiceve the same level of excellent service they have come to expect. On my truck signs and and advertising, I would list the use the new name, but I would put in smaller letters underneath "formerly company name. As you replace equipment or after at least a full season you could start leaving the "formerly company name" off.

    For current customers, if you don't already supply them with your cell number, ie if they just have access to your business line, I would make sure they get your cell number so they can have quicker access to aleve any concerns that might arise. I would put a small PS on the bottom of the letter, giving them the cell number, type the letter, but hand write the PS.
  3. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,501

    Very good point...I remember when I was in the training field that studies had shown that a handwritten ps is the first thing that is read by a person on a 1-page letter. 2nd is who the letter is coming from and many times 3rd thing read was the ps a second time.
  4. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 14,700

    I changed my company name back in 2001 from AM Lawn Service to Richard Martin Services. The A in AM was a partner who lasted about 2 months when we first started out back in 94. I hope you can figure out what the M was for. But, I digress. The reason for the change was everybody always got the name wrong, thought it meant morning or wanted to know who A was. It is far easier with just my name and I skip the 10 questions a day about the company name.

    In so far as how did I do it? One month the invoices said AM Lawn Service and the next month it said Richard Martin Services. No one asked any questions and all of the checks came with the new name on them.
  5. tiedeman

    tiedeman LawnSite Fanatic
    from earth
    Posts: 8,745

    Well, I have been using my LLC name more, but on all my invoices, ads, etc. I still have "Tiedeman, L.L.C." and then under neath it "Tiedeman Lawn & Landscaping"
    So its been a slow process of switching over to stricting the LLC name
  6. Turf Medic

    Turf Medic LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,073

    Are there any requirements where you live concerning the LLC. Here in Nebraska, once you set up a LLC you are required by law to include the LLC any time you use the company name.
  7. Expert Lawns

    Expert Lawns LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,660

    I was actually thinking about that today. Maybe "Professional Property Maintenance" would be better? Or "Professional Turf Management" or "Turf Management Team (TMT for short). That way the word TURF is in there to aleviate any confusion.

    Good pointers turf medic, thanks.
  8. Turf Medic

    Turf Medic LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,073

    Professional Landscape Management ???? should cover most aspects of the trade. If you use Turf Mangement, you are still limiting the scope of your business as it relates to the business name. IMO professional property maintenance still implies building and land maintenance ie heating and ac, parking lot and sidewalk repairs, plumbing roofing etc.
  9. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,372

    2 years ago I changed my name from J & H Lawn Service to J & H Outdoor Services.

    The biggest problem I had was getting my commercial accounts to change the 1099s, since when they sent them to the IRS, the IRS sent them a letter stating there was no J & H Lawn Service at that address.

    Then they would call me, wondering if I'm running a shoddy operation. It took me a couple of weeks and some phone tag, and I finally figured out what was going on. I then CALLED all my accounts and personally talked with the invoicing person and made sure they were aware of the name change and changed all their records.
  10. hartslawnmain

    hartslawnmain LawnSite Member
    Posts: 56

    Turf and Property Management, maybe.

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