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WTF happened a little help on Marketing

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by griddeath, May 22, 2002.

  1. griddeath

    griddeath LawnSite Member
    Posts: 6

    My partner and I admittedly got a late start we advertised in the local pennysaver - approx circulation 110,000 for 2 weeks. We put a business size card ad in it came out very professional. The ad ran May 3-17th. Lets just say we got 2 calls-. we were very disappointed we put some flyers out as well -no response. I want to blame it on the late start but we are mainly doing this on the side and were hoping to pick up 25-30 accounts. We are gearing up for fall for cleanups and to get a jump next year. The local area is booming with new constructions priced at 400-500,000 dollars. the area is ripe for the taking. My question -is the phone book effective? -what are the best ways to get some accounts up and running? what are the best ways to market a landscape business? Any help is apppreciated!
  2. HBFOXJr

    HBFOXJr LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,712

    go buy some of the Guerilla Marketing books at the book store

    They make you sleepy but worth it.
  3. What happened is that you are not willing to spend the money to run an effective marketing campaign. Two weeks in the local penny saver? With advertising you truly get what you pay for. How may radio spots have you run? How many ad's do you have in the MAJOR News papers. How many direct mail peices have you sent out? Any TV Spots? How may thousands of flyers did you say you put out? If putting a ad in the local penny saver is the extent of your marketing campaign and you got two calls, you did get what you paid for.
  4. 65hoss

    65hoss LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,360

    Timing is your main problem. Call friends and family and ask if they know anyone that might need your services. They may know people at work that would be interested.

    Put out more flyers. I mean thousands. You get out of it what you put in it.
  5. TGCummings

    TGCummings LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 773

    Hey Fox,

    Explain this comment, please. I'm looking into getting a book on Guerilla Marketing so the wife and I can learn a few more tricks and, as a born insomniac, I could use a little drowsiness... ;)

    Also, we put out 5000 flyers in the local paper 3 weeks ago and have had nearly two dozen calls and closed a half dozen or so sells. Not world shaking, but we turned away another half dozen one-timers and at least 3 more out of route. What we have picked up so far has already more than paid for running the flyers in their first month and they're all year-around service...
  6. Fantasy Lawns

    Fantasy Lawns LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,913

    I'd suggest contacting a direct mailer list n "buy" an address list of homeowners in zip codes you wish to start ( we sent out 15k ..this was about a $2K investment ) ....leave your card Everywhere .... wear you company shirt ( a nice polo with logo embroidery) or hat Everywhere ....give em to family n friends ....

    Get signs on your trucks n cars .... drive your trailer loaded with equip n a BIG sign on the back with the phone # .... do this when your waiting for the phone to ring (get call forward to your cell or something ....NO ANSWER MACHINE only on Sundays) GO OUT ON SATURDAY when everyone is out .... park it (leave someone with it ) n door hang ....walk n say hello ..... YOU have to Sell IT!

    Good Luck ;->
  7. griddeath

    griddeath LawnSite Member
    Posts: 6

    LC- We put out approx 2000 flyers - like I said we are doing this as a side gig just looking for some advice on how to affectively market a landscape business. The ads were $700 my point was the weekly circulation was over 110,000 WE got 2 calls -and got a job that profited approx 200 each. the 2 calls for 110,000 and 2000 flyers concerned me I figured we would gfet 20-30 calls and some jobs enough to warrant buying the equipment. I hope timimg is the main issue its a little late pretty much everyone has a landscaper already at least thats what I assume. I wasnt looking for 50 accounts just some calls no need to get your balls in a bunch - THX for the advice on the guerilla books Ill pick one up. Again experts just looking for an effective way to market a business not spend 10k to do an HBO special (radio ads? Whattttt???)
  8. nu83

    nu83 LawnSite Member
    from omaha
    Posts: 238

    With a good mailer you can expect about 2-3% return, if it sucks then almost zero. Also, do you know if the calls you did get were from the mailer or the penny saver. Stay away from the penny saver if its your main source of advertising, its not the ideal customer base you are looking for. From reading others experiences from the yellow pages most have said that they dont pay for themselves directly, however if someone knows the name of your company it is an easy way for them to find you and it gives the impression that you are a real company. The other responces are right, your not going to get 20-30 accounts from sending a couple thousand flyers. Good Luck
  9. summitgroundskeeping

    summitgroundskeeping LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 410

    Here's how it is...
    My area is booming too. Big housing developments and many enormous houses too. When someone spends over $300,000 on a new home in my area you look at their garage. If there is one higher end car (like a BMW or Audi) don't bother. If there are 2 higher end cars or more, you're good, but they won't pay much. Doctors pay less than lawyers, lawyers pay less than business owners. They blow all their money on the house and cars, and have no money for their kids collage and no money for home maintance and car maintance. Big houses mean they have no spendable cash. My parents will not ever take out any kind of loan and own their home and 5 cars. They spend their money on the little things and not on an enormous house (ours is around 3,800-4,000 sq. ft.)

    I put about 200 fliers in a high end development this year and last year (cheapest house listed for $375,000) and I have gotten a total of 2 calls. 1 from a man going to China on business, another from a man who needed his lawn cut onewce b/c he hadn't cut it in a month and a half. Wrong type of people to deal with.
  10. Brickman

    Brickman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,249

    For me the card in the door, and going and talking to people looking for work and they didn't call you first is a waste of time. I have to assume door hangers and direct mail flyers would be the same for me. How ever the capital city news paper, AND the yellow pages have given me more than enough work. I turn an unbelievable amount of work away. Unless I know the number of the person calling me I do not answer the phone. Half or more of the people calling won't leave a message, saves me from calling them back to say I don't have time to work for you.
    I messed around for 2 years and didn't get into the phone book like I should have. When I finally did the phone started ringing off the hook. And more of the kind of customers I wanted started to call me too. Instead of the elcheapo SS income folks.

    I tell every body that askes me about starting this biz. IF you are really serious about making this a go, and not being a one or two season outfit, GET YOUR NAME IN THE YELLOW PAGES.

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