bad competitors copying you

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by americanlawn, Jan 20, 2008.

  1. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Messages: 5,955

    Copying: your lawn program? your tree program? your spray rigs? your lawn flags? your brochures?

    Our estimate forms were also copied by this outfit (EVEN THE MISSPELLINGS!!!:laugh:) .

    Has this happened to you? If so, what is your opinion of outfits likes these?

    Please note that I am not mentioning any names so as not to violate forum rules, but I sure wished I could, cuz of many more reasons>>>> like several other local companies who have fought back by hiring "tree experts".

    Bankruptcy, false advertising, etc are also part of this organization's history. In fact, courts awarded us compensation (thousands of dollars) regarding the aforementioned culprit.

    Any of you experienced outfits like this?
  2. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Messages: 5,955

    I forgot to mention competitors stealing flags off lawns.

  3. GravelyGuy

    GravelyGuy LawnSite Silver Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 2,548

    That's pretty bad, and I thought it was bad around here:laugh:
  4. bill8379

    bill8379 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 778

    Oh jeez, at first I thought u were talking about me because I just registered a new business name and when I googled it, it was already taken by an american co. actually there were several with that name but none in my area.

    I went to one of their websites and thought.. man they got nice lawn signs:(
  5. rcreech

    rcreech Sponsor
    Male, from OHIO
    Messages: 6,163

    That is definitly bull crap....but also a complement to you and your business!

    They know you are good and know what you are doing!

    Its still bull crap though!
  6. PHS

    PHS LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 724

    AL, I hate when companies do that stuff. It seems like wherever I've been there are always a few companies that seem to spend all their time following, copying, and badmouthing thier competition. Everyone else in the same business is seen as an enemy.

    In your case where they are actually stealing your stuff they should be prosecuted for that without question. In a more general sense it is sort of a compliment. I figure they don't know enough or aren't confident enough in themselves to blaze their own trail so I just ignore them. In the long run if you are doing the best job you can your confidence and knowledge shines through with most customers. If you are spiteful and paranoid about your competitors that shows through too.
  7. ted putnam

    ted putnam LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,746

    I never had someone copy me but I'll tell you what I did have happen when I first started. One of my main competitors knew I was not the type to go after his customers.I try to go for the lawns that don't look so good or are just plain crap. He went into most of the really juicy neighborhoods and put one of his flags in virtually every lawn in the hopes that I would not pass a flyer to them. I'm all for a little competition but that seemed to me to be "dirty". Of course I passed them anyway, but I thought "what a schmuck!"
  8. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,800

    It felt so familiar, I worked for a company whose "Lawn Analysis " forms resembled those at Tru Green, where I used to work. But of course Tru Green borrowed heavily from Chem Lawn--in fact Tru Green's original name was "Chem Green" in about 1976. Until Chem Lawn's lawyers forced them to change it.
  9. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Messages: 5,955

    I must admit that we copied the lawn care program of ChemLawn -- not the one now, but the "original" ChemLawn which is nolonger in business. But before I did this, I "ran it by" Iowa State University to see if it was a sound program. This was nearly 20 years ago.

    More recently, we've had several customers call us reporting XYZ company stole our lawn flags from their front lawns. One day, one of my guys saw a compeitor in his truck at a comvenience store with one of our flags in his hand. To this day, I can tap on a competitor's website and read "ver batum" our tree & shrub care program that I designed back in 1990.

    I don't feel threatened by the actions of these competitors, but I question their character. Most lawn/tree companies around here pretty much know each other. They all know who are "good people" and those who they don't have a whole lot of respect for. The vast majority are respectable outfits. It's just 2 or 3 that...............
  10. lawnservice

    lawnservice LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 589

    let me get this KNOW you have misspellings on your estimate forms, yet you use them anyway?
    huh, interesting

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