Advertising - Some feedback on different types and their effectiveness.

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by A1 Grass, Sep 10, 2003.


Best Bang for the AD Buck....

  1. door hangers / flyers

    7 vote(s)
  2. direct mail postcards

    0 vote(s)
  3. coupon packs - (Advo, Val-Pak, etc)

    0 vote(s)
  4. Signs / Billboards

    2 vote(s)
  5. Radio / Television

    0 vote(s)
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. A1 Grass

    A1 Grass LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 330

    I have looked at lots of different types of advertising and it seems to me that NONE of them really has a "high" return rate.

    I have tried local-paper advertising, Signs and door hangers. No real return from newspapers and signs. I usually get about a .2% return on door hangers (2 customers per 1000). So for about $290 ($110 for 3000 door hangers printed/$180 for delivery) I can "buy" about 6 new customers. Seems like a decent trade-off, but I'd like to see some figures from you guys about your experiences and returns on ad investments.

    I know this is a common topic, but I think that this is a topic that can benefit all who participate...
  2. LawnLad

    LawnLad LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 738

    How about referral?
  3. Hamons

    Hamons LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 706

    I have sold baout 15 overseeding jobs and signed 5 new application contracts from a monthly ad in a local gardener newspaper. Ad cost me $300 to run and about $200 to create.

    This paper is a free paper ditributed at local nurseries. I think around 15,000 copies are printed at the beginning of the month and distributed.

    A copy of the ad is posted on the pesticide forum. Not the color one in the business forum.

    I don't know if you would consisder that a good return or not. but.... that 500 ad is going to get me 10x that in revenue.

    To me its the quality of tha ad and presenting the right message -- not how many you can get in front of people the cheapest !!!
  4. A1 Grass

    A1 Grass LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 330

    If you think repetition and budget are not important then you are wrong. You just happened to find a good publication that yields a high return, which is not the norm. I saw your ad and it looks nice. So keep it up. Most are not that lucky. I am going to see if we have that type of publication here...

    For those of you who haven't found a golden-goose (like myself and most others) - "how many you can get in front of people the cheapest" is a GREAT rule to follow. BTW - I spent 20 years in advertising...
  5. Hamons

    Hamons LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 706

    You would definitely know better than me with your advertising expereince -- I'm just giving you my empirical exprerineces.

    Other things I have tried that have been less effective.

    Newspaper inserts -- most people don't even see them. Worse than junk mail.

    Door - to Door Flyers -- time consuming to hang out. I think this is a great way to target neighborhoods, but has its limitations.

    telephone pole signs -- only people who called were looking for something for nothing.

    I will stand behind my stateemnt that quality advertising is worth paying for.
  6. A1 Grass

    A1 Grass LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 330

    We can both agree "quality advertising is worth paying for".

    The question we are trying to answer is what makes a quality ad? Basically, it's return.

    When I said "cheaper" you may have misunderstood my meaning. The fact that your ad cost you $500 total and brought you a .13% return means that your ad is "cheaper" than my door-hangers.

    yours 15,000 circ = $500 / 20 customers = $25.00 a customer

    mine 15,000 dh = $1100 / 30 customers = $36.67 a customer

    That is the info I am looking for. See, you were being cheap and didn't even know it! (That's NOT a dig)
  7. Hamons

    Hamons LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 706

    I think you also have to look at your target audience. If you are trying to appeal to high end clients that are willing to pay for high end advertising.

    Another thought -- I have found you have to look at the value of each customer. An annual application customer is going to be worth about $300/yr to me. Where as a one time landscaping cusomer might be worth $2000. For example: I played with the idea of advertising in a very high-end glossy magazine called Kansas City Home and Garden for more appliations customers.

    It was going to cost me $1200 with a 6 month minimum. When I ran the numbers there was no way I was going to get a satisfactory ROI -- since my target was application customers. The sales lady who was trying to talk me in to it said that all type sof landscapers advertised int heir and had great results. I pointed out that they were selling $3000.00 and up jobs. I was looking for cusomers who were only worth around $300. If I was trying to sell more landscaping jobs -- which I've got as amny as I can handle as it is -- then I would definitely run an ad in there.
  8. GLAN

    GLAN Banned
    Messages: 1,647

    The small yellow book is all we do, that and the truck lettering.

    I never tracked where the calls come from. Some when calling do say where they got the number. As long as I am hearing from time to time where it's coming from is fine.

    Well that and some journals, like the Chamber of Commerce journal, Safety books for the kids and a couple others.
  9. walker-talker

    walker-talker LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Midwest
    Messages: 4,771

    Little $100 a month, newspaper ads work well for me.


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