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Discussion in 'Christmas Trees & Seasonal' started by David Gretzmier, Dec 9, 2009.

  1. David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,645

    I've had this come up before, and the ugly side of it came up today. I had a customer that really wanted a 2500 buck dispay, and agreed to do a 1/2 cash 1/2 trade out last night. it was customer #36 for the year, and I was happy to get it. 2 weaths, 6 strands of garland, c-9's across the front, bows on wreaths, etc. beautiful display. the trade out is advertising, which is another word for gambling, I know, but you gotta roll the dice to win big.

    The ugly side of bartering is when they agree to one thing, as he did, and then try to change the deal when the guys show up today to hang the job. I had no plans to advertise in his magazine, but he absolutely wanted an awesome display for his house. At least he did no wait until it was all up to change the deal, he stopped them before they started. he called me and asked if I had talked to thier advertising person, and I said no, but I was fine with what we agreed, 1250 bucks in advertising value from their magazine and 1250 in cash from him. all of a sudden he starts backing away from that deal, taking a tone that he really did not want to spend that kind of money.

    Nothing angers me more than someone who cannot keep their word. further upsetting me is folks that want the deal to go their way more after they agreed to something. So I asked what he was looking for so my guys can do thier job. I took a giant step in his direction and said i would be pushed to the max if he could do 750 in cash and then I get 1750 in advertising value.
    At those dollar amounts, I am being forced into a corner I do not want to be in, being forced to spend money on advertising I did not plan on. but at least I cover the cost of some items and I am eating all the labor.

    I am aware these items over the year will set on the shelf and gather dust, and if they can create some landscape light sales for me, That is better. but I don't like being forced to change a deal. I like it to be my choice. and I would not choose to spend that kind of money to advertise with their magazine. but then he obviously would not choose to spend that kind of money on Christmas lights.

    i'll let you know how it works out.

    ah, bartering can be good, bad or ugly.
  2. LouisianaLawnboy

    LouisianaLawnboy LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,199

    Tell him you want 2000.00 advertising dollars and 750.00 cash.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  3. hotrod1965

    hotrod1965 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 587

    That guy knew all along what he was doing. I agree, you should have said, "you're changing the deal at the last minute, so I get $2K in ads and $750 cash, or my guys come back home". You would have got it.
  4. turf hokie

    turf hokie LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,751

    So far the only things we have really bartered for have been bucket trucks.
    Which we needed, and that was AFTER that customer approached us about lights.

    And that has worked out for everyone....so far.

    I know what you mean when people change things because the guys are there and most companies are not willing to pull the crew off the job.

    Had one this year, after much discussion about wreaths, garland, all 4 sides of the roof, they decide they dont want to spend the money. we are agreed to a c-9 fascia in clear lights. I am nervous about this and I confirm the day before "Mrs. Smith we are coming over tomorrow to install the front of the roof ONLY for $xxx.xx in white lights" She calls back and says ok

    Guys get there and she wants multi on all 4 sides, "she'll work it out with me later" I tell the guys to tell her they dont have the material on the truck and have her call the office for a change order and leave for the next job. They leave, she never called the office, go figure....
  5. David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,645

    The deal went down hill from where I left off up above. I got a quote from his advertising lady on the phone at his office for 3, 1/4 page ad's for 1500-1600 bucks, then she raised that price to 2500 bucks later today when the email quote came in. i cannot trust these people so I severed the tie and said as much.

    It is ridiclulous. They could have had a beautiful 2500 buck display on thier home for 1250 out of pocket plus their printing costs of 1/4 page for 3 months. I would have gotten 1250 in advertising dollars in a magazine I have wanted to try out anyway. I would have covered my costs and gotten another client. win, win, win.

    instead folks try to change the deal, play you and get greedy. they want everything for nothing. well, I am doing a soup nazi. no soup for them.
  6. turf hokie

    turf hokie LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,751

    They are the ones that lose. No lights on the house AND no future PAID advertising from you. Did they not look down the road and think that maybe if the ads worked you would do more?

    Very short sighted on their part, but typical of some people this year, wanting something (everything) for nothin'
  7. hotrod1965

    hotrod1965 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 587

    That's the way of a lot of people and companies. Think of how many light companies are going to go bust this year because they are just low balling trying to make a buck right now!


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