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First Year in business

cowboy

LawnSite Member
Location
Renton, WA
Hey All,

I was wondering how many accounts you guys got the first year you were in business (for people that started off with one truck)

How many Seasonal accounts:?
Residential
Private Drives
Commercial

And about how many people called up just for a one time plow during/after a storm?

Thanks for the help, just trying to do some loose estimations.

 

GeoffDiamond

LawnSite Bronze Member
Location
Maine
My advice. Stay a way from commercial for your first year. There is a lot more stuff to do and know about plowing commercial.

Geoff
 

Snow Pro

LawnSite Member
Location
Hammond, Indiana
Go for it! Don't be afraid to take on more work. The only thing is don't overpromise. If you're aggressive you can get as much as you want. You won't get a lot of calls during the first snow because nobody knows you're out there yet. I don't remember those numbers from my first year (too long ago). But I can tell you the first storm last year we got 200-300 calls and turned them all down because we had been booked up for a month already. Good luck!
 

SlimJim Z71

LawnSite Senior Member
Cowboy... I'm kind of in the same boat as you. I've been plowing for a couple of years, but this is my first year with my own stuff, and my own accounts. I've taken on a few residential accounts, plus Motorwerks... the dealership I work at (www.motorwerks.com). That is a big lot to do, so I'm trying to keep my accounts to a minimum until I see how everything goes. BUT... I've gotten a TON of phone calls for plowing. Complete strangers notice the lights and stuff on my truck and are like... "Hey... you interested in doing my driveway/parking lot/business?"

I called another insurance agent to get a quote on plowing insurance, he said "Well, we don't write snow-plow policies anymore, but I'd be interested in getting a quote from you!"--- How's that for ironic?

-Tim

P.S. SNOW PRO!!! You're web-site won't come up.
 

HandyHaver

LawnSite Member
Location
Phila Burbs
cowboy

This is my first year out on my own and had very good luck with putting out a few flyers & a small classified add in one of the local papers. Phone has been ringing off the hook. I have 14 signed and a bunch of estimates still out. Most of these res are "large" properties some with walks, some without. I'm making a list of those who don't sign and if they should flag me down while I'm on thier block, it's going to cost them. The only problem with the add is calls are coming from all over. With the flyers I can target my area and when I get a call ask about the neighbors. If I write a referal I'll throw in a small walk or some de-icer to the customer who gave it to me. Seems to be working for me. Anyway, good luck out there and listen to these guys out here, the know thier sh$t.

Mark
 
OP
C

cowboy

LawnSite Member
Location
Renton, WA
Thanks to the people that have posted so far, keep em coming.

Well I have a a "metro" area of probable 7,000 or a little more, but there are more private drives and roads that definantly need plowing up here, so I figure it will offset the lower population, and there is a lack of snowplowing business (excavating firms will come out and plow when the snow gets deep)and one landscaping business but I think I can make it.

non of these guys advertise in the local paper either.

Well thanks again

Cowboy
 

jaclawn

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
South West PA
My first year:
Sent out 100 post cards to local business in Oct. Got about 10 calls for quotes. Landed about 5 jobs.

I picked up another commercial during the winter.

An ad in the local paper only produced a few one time jobs, residential, and only after it had snowed for days. Not worth the effort.

I also take note of of any lots in my service area that are not serviced in a timely manner, or that are not serviced properly. I will direct mail them right after a storm while the dis-service is still fresh in their mind.

My best advice is to put the word out that you are plowing. Tell the business that you deal with that you need eplowing work. There seems to be no lack of work available. Just a lack of snow.
 
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