What do you guys think about this?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Albery's Lawn & Tractor, Feb 24, 2007.

  1. Albery's Lawn & Tractor

    Albery's Lawn & Tractor LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,674

    So I'm trying to decide what I should do this season for advertising. I want the most bang for my buck like most. Last year I spent about $1,500 for a 10 line classified ad that ran for 6 months. The results were ok, most of my work was more landscape and tractor work rather then mowing so I didn't get a lot of jobs but the jobs I got paid well. So I've been going over some numbers and I am thinking about taking out a 1/8 page ad for maybe a two weeks to a month and say 1 month free mowing w/ a 12 month contract. Even if I only get 20 more customers w/ 42 mowings per year @ $35 a visit thats $29,400. Now take 4 mowings off per client and that still leaves $26,600 plus all of my current accounts. I personally think I'd get more then 20 clients but it's a simple number. I figure during fall and winter I'll mow 2 times a month and weekly during the summer. Any trimming of bushes or fertilizing is of course gonna be extra.
    What do you guys think?

    Second question is I think accepting credit cards would be a big hit too. What is the best way to go about doing this? Should I just go to my bank or should I just tell clients to use paypal and add 5% or so to cover the fees?

    Thanks for all the help so far, this really is a great site.
     
  2. googles

    googles LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 294

    I dont know how that would work out with a lot of the older clients. plus you would have to charge them tax still on top of the paypal fee. paypal charges you a fee and also the person paying. so you are both getting charged on paypal. customers hate to spend extra money and why should you pay extra money as well. just make them pay on time and charge them a late fee if there late. it works ok for most of my clients.
     
  3. daveintoledo

    daveintoledo LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,587

    those small ads in the classifieds suck, and are expensive, its cheaper to run a 1/4 page ad for two to three weeks in most papers....)around here, your area may be more)
     
  4. LLandscaping

    LLandscaping LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,016

    I would run the ad but I wouldn't give away a month of free mowing. Maybe offer a parentage discount toward future services with a yearly contract.
     
  5. Albery's Lawn & Tractor

    Albery's Lawn & Tractor LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,674

    It would only be like losing $10 per month per account. Obviously I'm not gonna go mow in April for free but I could give them the option of paying a set price each month with the discount billed in, most people like being billed monthly anyways.
     
  6. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    I think once you get out of the classified section, you should see your problems alleviated considerably without having to give away free services.

    I also think you'll see how more than one of us has been disappointed by the result of classifieds, it appears it's not the way to go for a business.

    Other than that, you should be fine.
     
  7. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    I think once you get out of the classified section, you should see your problems alleviated considerably without having to give away free services.

    I also think you'll see how more than one of us has been disappointed by the result of classifieds, it appears it's not the way to go for a business.

    Other than that, you should be fine.
     
  8. googles

    googles LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 294


    I wouldn't give away a free month. thats crazy, what if they move, or what if they are unhappy with service or lose there job or whatever it may be. then you been screwed out of money. plus after busting your back in the heat and doing all these free lawns for a month you will regret it. its easy thinking now but when you out there working a whole month free (some months are 5 weeks) you may wish you didn't keep that promise. plus all the gas, workers salaries and repairs that happen you may want to think of giving a discount instead or just advertise and without discount. where i am it may be different but over here its easy to get clients. you cant grow as fast as you want. as long as you do good work that is the best thing they can get and if you get someone looking for a good deal then they wont be there the next year. you want long term customers. its funny when i first started i did something similar and gave the fifth cut free. i got a lot of old people on set incomes and cheapies. most of the clients dropped me the next year when i told them there was no fifth cut free anymore. they went with other cheaper company's. i may now be a few dollars higher then some of the other companies but i am there with crew and job gets down right. other companies send non speaking people without boss and clients get what they give them. i am there so its done right. thats my thoughts so i hope its helps.
     
  9. daveintoledo

    daveintoledo LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,587


    classified suck, too small and no one will look there
     
  10. Willofalltrades

    Willofalltrades LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,000

    Haha way to sum it up Dave.

    The one free month is a bad idea. I mean you loose income for four weeks while you are still paying expenses... theres better ways... get "The Grasscutting School" to help you. lol
     

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