Flyer distributing alternatives?

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by kc2006, Jan 5, 2006.

  1. kc2006

    kc2006 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,443

    Hey guys, I'm trying to think of different ways to get mass amounts of flyers out. I've tried the only local company that distributes them, they put them in bags with other flyers, it didn't work all that great but I did put them out over a month too late in the spring. The cost was ok, 4 cents a flyer. The budget won't allow for direct mailing either. I know alot of people probably have their employee's put flyers out...I'm solo though so that option is out.

    Are there any different ways you guys have gotten them out? I'm looking to put 10-15K out.

    The only other ideas I've had are: pay high school kids to put them out, put an ad in the local paper and find a few people to do it, or go to a local work agency and hire a couple of guys for a few days. Of course its always, how do I know the people will put them out and all the other variables that come with that. Plus technically I'd need to put them on payroll wouldn't I? Which that right there would make it a no-go for me, I don't want to be bothered with that, especially for just a week or so.

    I have to get a hold of the local newspaper and see about having them inserted in the paper. I know the sunday paper comes with ad's for national stores and alot of people actually look through those. I've asked around (my little surveys I hold on people I know :) ) and alot of people said thats about the only thing they do look at. So this could be a good option...if I can get in it.

    Thanks for the help in advance, hope to get some good ideas! :waving:
  2. walker-talker

    walker-talker LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Midwest
    Messages: 4,771

    Last year I got my nephew and a couple friends of his to help out. I think I paid them about $5 an hour...not too bad for a couple 11 year olds. It's been talked about here, but I spoke with another LCO and he used the cub scouts. This guy paid them each $7 an hour and I feel that was too much. If you do have kids pass them out....give them strict guidelines on what to do and not to do. My nephew's friend was passing them out last year and came across a guy that said he was not interested and didn't want a flyer. He was bragging that as soon as the door closed he slipped the flyer in the door anyway. He thought he would impress me by telling me about...I guess. Anyway, I got a call from the guy later that afternoon and he was upset. I will probably try the boyscout idea this year. I will also probably get myself on of those electric or gas scooters for myself. For that matter, I might buy my nephew one if he helps me for a couple weeks.
  3. kc2006

    kc2006 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,443

    Thanks for the suggestions, Matt (did I get your name right?)

    The only family I have that I could get to help are my two neices, but they're alittle too young (8/9). I would rather have boys doing it too, I wouldn't feel safe with the girls out there, even if I was riding down the street watching them.

    I'm going to talk to the priest at my church, see if I can somehow get the youth group to do it and then donate to the church or pay them, or just have him tell the youth group about it and see if a few would be interested and pay them. I still have to call the newspaper on monday about inserts.

    Any other suggestions?

    HOOLIE LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,981

    I am pondering this question as well, kc. I used 2 different companies to distribute them my first year, and ended up signing up over 30 mowing customers. Last year I had a similar number distributed (my 4th year) and hardly got any calls, and only signed up 4 :confused:

    Part of the problem (a big part no doubt) was there were often 10 or more LCOs flyers in a single flyer distribution. So there was a ton of competition.

    I actually had much better luck from the spot-flyering I had my part time employee do.

    Not sure what the solution is...maybe to try other types of advertising. Newspaper ads are not that pricey, especially when you start to figure the true cost of flyering.
  5. Landscape25

    Landscape25 LawnSite Member
    from Florida
    Messages: 199

    If you hire temp. labor they cover all the employee things like taxes and insurance- Labor Ready or a place like that. I don't know if they will get passed out though. I would want to be there to supervise if I ever used them for anything.
  6. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Messages: 4,899

    Check with your local paper about adding a sticky to the front page. its relatively cheap and its so convenient, customer pulls it off and sticks it to fridge or what ever. You can even have it printed to say this is the only notice you will get or something along those lines so that they are kept by any potential customers. when I checked it was 22 cents a sticky in bright yellow plus printing cost. Don't remember what that cost was but it was cheaper than mail and You can hit 15-20k or more customers with 1 distribution
  7. 6'7 330

    6'7 330 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,821

    There are flyer distribution services around here,and they target only the areas you request.We have not use such a service for a while now,but back in about 2002 their rates were acceptable.
  8. kc2006

    kc2006 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,443

    Hoolie, I'm already putting an ad in a free local paper thats distributed to all homeowners in the 3 towns I work in. I have an ad in the towns largest church's bulletin and I'm in the yellow pages. The flyers is just another attempt to get as much work as I can. I'm doing as much marketing this year as possible all at the same time so hopefully when people are looking around for service they will see my name more then once.

    Mac, the sticky idea is a good one, I'll have to check into it.
  9. SouthernYankee

    SouthernYankee LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 789

    In Houston there are two ways to do this.

    First there are two companies that I know of that put your buisness onto a "slice of a wheel" or on a large doorhanger, they have a no compete rule so that there wont be anyother type of LCOs on the wheel. The bennefit is that in one printing and distribution, your ad gets out to 30k homes in the specific target neighborhoods .For me this is perfect since I can only work in one small section of Houston. (Houston is the size of the whole state of Rhode Island.

    The other way to go is to hire cheap day labors and put them seperately in different neighborhoods, by doing so you know that they wont run off and not distribute them. You can go back and check on them to make sure that they are passing them out.
  10. Rick414

    Rick414 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 7

    For what is worth, I have never bothered with advertizing other than word of mouth and see lots of fliers etc. just thrown away. Since I have been doing this at least part time since I was 12 years old, this year being 41 total, I have a large customer base. Most of them are in the same neighborhood that I grew up in and some have been with me the whole time. My wife, 2 sons, and I do about 127 yards a week and the majority were signed on by the folks seeing us in the neighborhood and seeing our work and reliability. The close grouping affords us low travel time, less loading and unloading, and lower overall prices as a result. I have seen lots of services come and go, mostly because they charged too much and were not reliable. Many leave fliers where I work but none have cost me any work. I welcome the competition and hope to sell some of my accounts to a good service whenever I no longer can handle the load, in 20 or thirty years.

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