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4,393 postcards went out to be exact

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by grandview (2006), Apr 24, 2008.

  1. UpNorth

    UpNorth LawnSite Member
    from NE,US
    Messages: 210

    RND has some nice stuff. I use them for my posting signs. The price on them can't be matched. However the other printed materials like postcards and door hangers are a tad(putting it mildly) bit high. I have been using www.plan-itgraphics.com and can't say enough good things about them. And trust me, I use RND every year for my signs so its not a knock to them. It's just that in todays economy, we need to find was to cut costs.
  2. MDLawn

    MDLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,284

    Thanks for the info UpNorth. Yea I have found some other places that do have better prices and yea we gotta watch the spending for quite a while. Especially on advertising, I would like the chance to get the most for my dollar.

    Another question. For the guys who send postcards do you have a company sell you the mailing list and also label all the cards for delivery or do you purchase a mailing list and then apply your own labels? Anyone work better? Thanks for all the replies so far.
  3. UpNorth

    UpNorth LawnSite Member
    from NE,US
    Messages: 210

    There are a few way to go about doing it, but I suggest you get a good quality list of your own first. I was just reading on another post that someone used/rented a list from Cactus Mailing and it was horrible. I am fortunate to have a realtor in the family so I get my lists for free, but you can check out infoUSA. I just got a brochure from them the other day, but have no experience with them.

    Now... Once you get the list, i then suggest you get more postcards than you need printed, and find a local "mailing services" company. I get my cards for Plan-It and then take them to my mailing place... It's what Ive been doing for years now. They will let you use there mailing permit for discounted postage, and charge you a fee to print the label and postage on there.

    It's really the way to go, you have almost total control, and since you now purchased extra postcards it makes it so much easier for you to do continuous mailings throughout the year.
  4. Jon11

    Jon11 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 24

    I used my county's appraisal website for addresses (and names). This allowed me to create several different lists for myself in excel, down to exact streets. On the website I can put in a street, and it will give me all of the addresses and names of people living on it. I prefer to know exactly what areas I am mailing to, and not take a chance on a "bought" mailing list including a few hundred I rather not mail to. Each of my lists contain about 1/4 of a zip code here in Fort Worth, all smack in the middle of my target area. Also, I might send out larger postcards to the $500,000+ homes as they are more likely to be hiring a lawn service (and paying for additional services) than a $125,000 home. (if you can't think of enough streets, just pull up google maps, you can see all the streets in your area, as well as get a general idea of the average backyard size as well)

    This method definitely takes more time, but you end up with a very customized mailing list for FREE that will save you money in the long run... and what else are you going to do in the off season?

    BTW, most larger counties have an appraisal district website. For smaller, less populated areas, you might be out of luck on this method.
  5. MDLawn

    MDLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,284

    Jon11, I do have access to my county web site that has a map feature giving you names, addresses, and assessed values for land and home but not income. Obviously, well hopefully, someone living in a $350,000+ home actually makes the salary to afford it. I like the idea but like you said it is time consuming but can save me some money. Plus I am really only trying to target the area in which I work so my routes stay tight. Nothing is worse than driving all around. Better get the label paper ready and get some postcards. Thanks for the idea. The other thing is I have found that the county website can be off by 6 months on new people moving so would you put an address as follows? Just don't want people to toss out what their name is not on. Thanks

    John Doe or Current Resident
    1234 Anystreet
    Anytown, state, 11111
  6. Jon11

    Jon11 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 24

    I am sure my county website is off too... Actually I know someone who got married and two years later it still has her old name on the house even though they changed it back then.

    I always just put the name that is on the website though. If someone is interested in lawn service, they won't care what name is on the postcard... I suppose the only thing putting "or current resident" might help with is people who have had their mail forwarded... I don't want Joe Shmoe who just moved 100 miles away getting my card instead of that house.

    I am pretty good with excel which really helps, so I can copy and paste all the raw data from the site, edit out all the info I don't want on 1000's of rows at a time. I can go from nothing, to a list of about 1000 homes in a very select target area (I pick each street), and ready to print on avery labels in about 20 minutes... I forget what it is called, something like "Mail Merging" in Microsoft Word... this will allow you to pull your excel fields into word (and arange them) then print the labels, you can select any size of standard label you want in Word.

    Like I said, it takes a bit longer for the average person, but it can save you literally $1000's over time, and you target the exact homes you want.

    This really comes in handy for gated neighborhoods if you can't get your hands on a homeowners directory.
  7. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,810

    When I try to copy and paste the list from my county website it copies all the columns at one time... and if I paste it to excel it turns into one continuous string in field number one. What is your method?
  8. MDLawn

    MDLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,284

    Jon11, thanks again.
  9. lifetree

    lifetree LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,369

    Congratulations, man ... nice looking post card, too !!
  10. Jays Green Daze Landscape

    Jays Green Daze Landscape LawnSite Member
    Messages: 46

    What type of "mailing services" company do you recommend?

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