Do You Follow Up, or Not?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by MOturkey, Jun 18, 2006.

  1. MOturkey

    MOturkey LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,781

    I'm curious as to your policy regarding following up on potential clients. For example, I listed in the Yellow Pages this year, and have given a couple of estimates, with an "I'll call you in a few days" from the property owner, which doesn't happen.

    I expected this to happen with some frequency, and in one case, I'm really glad they didn't call back! Friday, however, a lady called and I went to look at their place. It is a new housing development, about 8 miles from town, 3 acre lots. The place hasn't been landscaped yet (which I don't do), but also hasn't been mowed, and they were wanting it all mowed, and possibly, weekly service thereafter. The "grass" is a couple of feet high in places, but due to the dry weather we've had this spring, isn't very thick. I told the lady I'd prefer to just do the job by the hour the first time, then could give them a firm bid for regular service, and gave her an hourly rate, and told her to plan on at least 3 hours, but it might go a bit faster, as there are no trees or other obstacles to speak of.

    She said she would discuss it with her husband, and give me a call. So far, no word. I wouldn't mind having this job, as they are building several houses in this development, and I suspect I would eventually end up with another property or two.

    Now, my question is, do I call, say tomorrow evening, assuing I haven't heard anything, and ask if they've made a decision, or just wait for a call that might never come? And, no I'm not an assertive person. I'd starve to death selling door-to-door, but think maybe I need to sometimes do a little more follow up.
  2. CutInEdge Lawn Care

    CutInEdge Lawn Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 677

    The longer you wait the thicker and taller it gets. So what happens after the first time and you get more effeicient and bigger better equipment and now it takes you x amount of time. You think they wont be watching with a stop watch. Well this time it only took you x amount and last time it only took you xx amount of time. Will you please lower the amount because you arent spending as much time. No mam we just upped our Hourly wage sorry. Hmm
  3. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,501

    In this situation, it would simply depend on how much I wanted the job.
  4. meathead1134

    meathead1134 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 637

    Whenever I give a quote and they say I'll get back to you. I automatically call them 24 hours later. With phone messages I get back to them in less than 3 hours. Prompt and professional reponse has landed numerous jobs that have paid well. I can't stand crappy customer service and will not put up with it.
  5. MOturkey

    MOturkey LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,781

    Maybe I'm just dumb, but I don't quite understand everyone's reluctance to give an hourly quote for work? I mean, just how intelligent does someone have to be to divide the price charged by the LCO by the time on the job? I'd think everyone you mow for would have a pretty good idea what it is costing per hour, if you asked them.

    Also, my hourly quote was just for this original cleanup, and the hourly rate was higher than what I normally shoot for on a weekly service account. I explained to the potential client that this was just for the original mowing, and I'd give a firm bid for subsequent mowings. Perhaps giving a firm bid in such situations is desirable, but I feel the hourly quote for something like this protects me and the client. I'm not going to be eating anything if the job takes longer than I anticipate, and the customer knows they aren't going to be paying more than they should be.

    I did one of these just last month, and the guy ended up hiring me for weekly service. Thanks for your input, though.

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