Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Total.Lawn.Care, Aug 16, 2006.

  1. Total.Lawn.Care

    Total.Lawn.Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 840

    I know that nothing will get your name out better during an initial start up than Advertising. However, some forms of advertising are really expensive and can be a big cash gamble when you do not have alot of capital to work with.

    So, how did you guys do your initial advertising to get you a good client base started? I have been working for about 6 weeks and have gotten 6 regular customers and alot of calls from one time visits. Almost all of my business has come from be putting out fliers in the middle of the night on Mail Box Posts. This has a return on it, however it is very small. In one about 2 1/2 weeks ago I put out about 1700 fliers and have only gotten about 6 jobs from them so far. I am still trying fliers, but I need to find something that is more effective.

    I am seriously comsidering ads in small papers (if anyone is familiar with them, things like the Penny Saver and the Tell-N-Sell). These ads will be about $40 each and will run for 2wks & 4 wks respectively.

    Does anyone have other ideas or methods they have tried that have worked well for them?

  2. GriffinLawnService

    GriffinLawnService LawnSite Member
    Messages: 235

    I am having a similar problem myself. Pepole have told me to try door hangers they are like a hundred and something dollars for like 1000.

    I also am about to try putting signs on my trailer and truck to try and get business that way.

    Also put business cards in business that will allow you to. I have got a couple jobs this way. I am not very experienced in this because I havent been operating but a year, but I think you just have to keep trying.

    Just keep in mind the old saying "You must spend money to make money"
  3. prn068

    prn068 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 20

    I have tried a lot this year but for low budget advertising local news papers were the best I spent 10,000 on yellow pages and yes they are good for big jobs. but for 50.00 a week, a business card size add went to five small towns and the response was overwhelming. I had to quit advertising for a while so I could catch up. I got several thousand dollars for 200.00 worth of add.
  4. Total.Lawn.Care

    Total.Lawn.Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 840

    I am still going to stick with fliers on Mail Box Posts and I just put an Ad in three small community news papers. I will run it for two weeks and I might re-submitt it for 4 more so that I get 6 weeks in a row, that will carry me into Early Oct. Still trying to get ideas and find ways to build the business during the winter.
  5. daveintoledo

    daveintoledo LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,587

    this stuff has been discussed a thousand times, and is there already for your reading....:)
  6. Total.Lawn.Care

    Total.Lawn.Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 840

    Thank you and I have read many of them, some of them old and some of them recent. I also know that many new operators have some on over the course of this season, myself included, adn they can benefit from soem fresh information or maybe even they have stories about of new methods that have worked for them. Either way, if you want to add to the discussion, please feel free, if not, then pass us over and we will carry on. Old posts are great, but that does not always help out. Someone can spend much longer re-searching old posts than just letting members post fresh.

    Thanks for the help, I will be sure to keep your comments in mind...
  7. firefightergw

    firefightergw LawnSite Gold Member
    from Texas
    Messages: 3,340

    Since you haven't been in business for very long, it's too late in the season to spend a lot of money on advertising. I will tell you this though. Flyers is probably the best form of advertisement for you money. I put an ad in the yellow pages this year and I will never do it again. This late in the year, I would put an ad in your local paper and in the Penny Saver. If you advertise in both, you usually get a price break. The local paper is a good source but not everyone gets it. The good thing about the Penny Saver is that everyone gets it. I advertised my first year in nothing but the local paper and Penny Saver and I always recouped my ad cost and then some.

    Preparing for next year, I would save as much as you can this year and have a company put out flyers for you. In my area, you can have 10,000 flyers distributed for about $600. The first time I dropped that kind of money, I was scared but I promise it is well worth it. A good time to start flyers is about about 3 weeks before the season starts. Hope this helps and good luck!
  8. Total.Lawn.Care

    Total.Lawn.Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 840


    You said that you had a company put out fliers for you. What kind of company did this. Is it an advertising firm that set up a bulk mailing by zip code or what? I used to work for a pizza company and we would do bulk mailings with an advertising firm all of the time, but I am not in the same area anymore and I have no idea what kind of companies we have around here that do that sort of thing. Can you give me more info???

  9. ChadsLawn

    ChadsLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,110

    Sorry to say, but here in Fla that is illegal. Heres how I did my flyers. Get your flyers made. Goto super walmart to the hair brush section. Look for the girl hair bands. There you will see packages of little rubber bands 200 per pack. Then goto where the storage bags are located. Get the off brand of 1 gallon bags(not the zip lock) there like $2 per 100.Next goto home depot and buy a bag of white river rock $2 and change. Take the rocks out of the bag, put them on a big garbage bag and rinse them off and let dry. now roll your flyers I rolled mine so My name was the first thing they saw without unrolling. Anyway roll them up, put the rubber band around the roll. Next put the flyer at the bottom of the bag and insert a rock or 2 depending on size. Finally tie the bag and walla.Now you can toss the flyers on the driveways. They wont blow away or get wet if it rains.
  10. Total.Lawn.Care

    Total.Lawn.Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 840

    Chad, this topic of puttng out fliers with your method was discussed earlier somewhere and most people said that they do not like them adn that it can be considered littering. I hate to say, but I would not liek it either. I have actually recieved a call from the post office concerning this, and as long as the flier does not touch the mail BOX, it is okay. I can staple them to the posts, pin them to the post, etc. as long as they do not toush the box.

    I was rolling them and putting them behind the flags, and quite frankly, I probably still will. I have only gotten one call in 3500 fliers about them being there. It is Illegal to open the box, but they did not say it was illeagal to put a flier on it, just that if it touches the box, it is supposed to have postage.

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