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Marketing to LCOs

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by SprinklerGuy, Feb 20, 2003.

  1. SprinklerGuy

    SprinklerGuy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,778

    Okay....most of you guys are LCOs right? Some larger than others....I have a question.

    We only do irrigation repairs and installations. We also do sod, but we do absolutely no lawn maintenance or anything like that. Ever since I started my company in 1994, the LCO has pretty much kept me in business. I established many relationships early on in my companies life and have gotten many, many good referrals from LCOs. Most of them ask for nothing in return as they are quite established and the referrals from me are meaningless. They ask for me to service their accounts the right way and right away. I happily have obliged because I know what their business means to me.

    Now for the question...less of a story!

    I haven't every marketed to new LCOs. I occasionally will pick one up because they have either spoken to me or one of my techs in the field or supply shop. Or another LCO will refer them to me. This has gone on for several years now and I am very happy with most of the LCOs that I service. I haven't really ever lost one to another sprinkler company.....most of the ones I have lost have gone out of business...(they should have found this forum group!)

    My question to you LCOs: What could a sprinkler guy do to make himself known to you and get you to refer some work to him? We have great LCO references.....put yourself in Arizona for a second...you are an LCO who doesn't have a sprinkler tech on staff...you need help....how would we find each other.

    I picked up a new LCO in October of 2002...He has given me over 30k in work since then! If I had 2 or 3 more guys like him, I could hire another guy. Or two guys. Or I could make one of my guys the LCO specialist......anyhow, I'm just wondering if anyone has ideas for this.

    I know the obvious choice would be to call on them one by one, or write letters....or put ads up in the supply houses....any Marty Grunder type ideas out there? Thanks in advance.
  2. I have had a hard time finding a GOOD company to refer my sprinkler work to. Besides a letter, just stop and talk to anybody you see working. Also ask the LCO's that you work for now for referrals.

    If somebody is coming to me looking for work
    1. Do you do irrigation only (I see you do sod installs-wouldn't be a problem to me
    2. Time in business
    3. Size of company
    4. References

    and I'm sure you know this but don't forget to acknowledge the referrals that you get, I know you can loose my referrals for the lack of a thank you. And thats a thank you in words, nothing else required.

    All that said I would respond best to a personal visit, then a letter.
  3. SprinklerGuy

    SprinklerGuy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,778

  4. SprinklerGuy

    SprinklerGuy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,778

  5. Gravely_Man

    Gravely_Man LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,075

    A letter to all of the LCO in the area that you don't currently have an arrangement with is a good start but must be followed up with a personal visit. I would have a package ready to give the LCO owner (similar to the one you give to prospective customers) and repeatedly mention that you do not perform any lawn maintenance. This will help ease everyone's mind that you are not trying to take his or her customers.

  6. SprinklerGuy

    SprinklerGuy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,778


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