Christmas Decor

Discussion in 'Christmas Trees & Seasonal' started by addictedtolandscaping, Dec 10, 2011.

  1. addictedtolandscaping

    addictedtolandscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    from NY
    Messages: 569

    Hey guys question for all of you that are Christmas Decor people.

    I was just on their website - obviously after the best LED products I can get my hands on. Anyhow, their franchise costs are amazingly lower than they were last time I thought about this.

    Can anyone give me an honest opinion on what they feel about CDI. As some of you have seen the past couple years - especially this year has really been a bit of a pain in the neck. This year, I experienced 0 yup, that is a zero for new residential growth. Actually is you read my thread from yesterday, I downsized, but that is another story. Now truth be told, the only thing I did for advertising was strictly the HBL direct mail program, which at first seemed like it was going to be successful again, but produced strictly tire kickers. A few of you have been so very kind in guiding me along my path to this point, Dave, Bryan come right to mind of the bat. After this season, I am actually taking a true step back and evaluation where I am at. Now don't get me wrong, I did pick up a new commercial client, and that was great, but it was a referral from an existing client. Three years into it, I am still only at about $35k this year. Of that $35k, I would say 80% is commercial - which I love, not so crazy about residential. I am at the point where either i need to have some serious growth next season so I can afford to add a full install crew, or stay where I am. Right now, we have one left to do and as I noted yesterday, still waiting on the renewal. It really is becoming a total pita dealing with these residential clients I have. I know for sure, I can not do any more myself. MY son is able to hop in on occasion and is a tremendous help, but he is still in school and I will not have him lose his education to help me.

    I am feeling like I am missing something though, and I think it was in the training. There was very little sales training/marketing at the HBL training I went to. Great hands on portion, great introduction to product, but not alot of sales/marketing. Dave has mentioned numerous times about Christmas Decor's training.
  2. turf hokie

    turf hokie LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,753

    Well, I think I am the only Christmas Decor that posts here, I am sure there are one or two that probably I will answer.

    First, I left you a voicemail a little bit ago so give me a buzz when you can. I know I have talked to you a bit about it but have not had a ton of time to really go in depth

    The initial investment looks pretty enticing, much less than what I bought in for 7 1/2 years ago...but then again so is HBL....

    Material is hands down some of the best out there, costs are usually less than most competitors and the quality is almost always better.

    Marketing is very good, great informational material and exceptional prices from the print company, I am not a fan of direct mail, but the pricing is great.

    The website has a great presence and I get great leads off of it, most of them are serious and not tire kickers. Some of my biggest jobs have come from the CDI website.

    There is a great staff with CDI, there is always someone that can answer questions and help you out, or at the very least get you in touch with the person that can.

    Sometimes the protected territory is great, other times it sucks...

    I hate the royalty payments, but I can usually justify them by looking at the support, ongoing training and savings on product and marketing materials, as well as the leads and sales generated by the website.

    Like every relationship there are ups and downs, good and bad.

    There is a lot more to it and I am more than willing to go over it on the phone.

    Good luck
  3. addictedtolandscaping

    addictedtolandscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    from NY
    Messages: 569

    Thanks Bryan!!, I have gone over our past conversations in my head time and again. I just feel like there is something missing, and as I mentioned when we talked the other day, the idea of LED was always my intention, but the HBL prices scared me let alone with client base I have. I do all C-9 type work, I like the classic look, and find it is more accepted here than anything else, I think I told you what I have dealt with in regard to LL. I also need to figure out a rental option like I mentioned, I have been asked about that numerous times this year. People seem to feel like they are stuck with something once they buy it.

    There are some other concerns I have as well, such as a few current clients in an area that is serviced by a CD guy already, if they would tell me I had to give them up etc. I know there are ways around that though. Then there is an area I wan to expand into I may have mentioned to you but don't know if it is still a possibility if I were to sign up as I think there is already someone there.

    Dave has commented a few times on the training. The quality of product and pricing is really what has my thoughts going. I almost fell out of the chair this am when I saw that they have dropped it down that far. I like the idea of the marketing plan you mentioned the other day, and I like the idea of the direct mail program that Dave has talked about numerous times. There are of course other things that need to be accomplished as well, I never got any of our signs out this year, I picked up 2 or 3 dozen last year after seeing how many times Dave has mentioned it, I was just so busy doing installs and then having to step back in for black top runs as I agreed to with the company I work with during the rest of the year, then of course no matter whom I seemed to contact this year, my bucket truck just wasn't meant to be lettered. That has significantly frustrated me, there is a neighborhood I have a client in - actually a couple of them, that people stop and look and we have actually been approached by a few people on these neighborhoods, just got an email from one, they want to sign up for next season, 3k just a bit to steep for two weeks or so and I agree with them in all honesty.

    I have quite a few things in my head already, some of them are trivial. Tomorrow we finish up the project form today, the damn snow melting got me a bit wet, hell I looked like a drown rat when I got off the roof, then when the sun went down, that was that for me. It really sucked walking on a roof with 5 inches of snow on it yet; but it is what it is.

    I will give you a call during the week, I know you are busy tying up loose ends, and I do not want to interrupt you on that, and the dump truck is coming back out for Monday as well, go figure, December., snow on the ground and we will be running black top.

    Gonna finish up in the am, client told me today if she had gotten the renewal in October show would have loved to add a few wreaths and seriously looked at expanding to her lower roof like I had suggested. That would have been another 1500-1800. None the less, alot to look at.

    Thanks again!!!!!!
  4. TexasFire221

    TexasFire221 LawnSite Senior Member
    from Texas
    Messages: 480

    Hey Bryan I myself am going to look into CDI next season. There are only a few guys in this area that work with them. Ill message ya later and maybe you can give me a few pointers.
  5. turf hokie

    turf hokie LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,753

    By all means. i will help any way i can.
    Posted via Mobile Device

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