Selling tips

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Bunton Guy, Jan 8, 2002.

  1. Bunton Guy

    Bunton Guy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,920

    I will try to make this quick and painless...I have been having MANY MANY problems with selling this winter not to much from the cold weather its basically I think my way of going about getting the acounts such as gas stations...some are independently owned some arent. How do you find who to talk to ? I always went for the corporate office phone #'s and store manager #'s but the foreign people behind the counter never knew any of the #'s . And when I went to stores to talk to the store manager they said they were happy with there current service & or they just signed a contract and I always reply with . Well here are some of the things I would be able to do for you 1. Save you money each month 2. provide a clean image service. 3. point out the parts of the property in which there service is lacking and where I could make it better. 4. End it with asking if I can get a bid in to show you how much I can save you. And at that point they usually interupt and say sorry were not looking for a new service. So im kinda fustrated trying to find new accounts here in charlotte nc...most of the time I will send them a sales pitch letter than 3 weeks later follow up with a visit. Everytime I go to a new shopping complex or any other brand new building they keep the service who seeded the property and did the landscaping for the new building so I have no chance there. Thats also another question how to I become one of those companies that get the subbed work from builders ? Any tips on selling would be great I know this is a subject that has been beat to death but I am in dire need of some tips here. I have lately in the last week or so tried the major gas station chains such as Citgo, Exxon, BP, 76, Shell and all of the owners own multiple stations and allready have a service doing all of the locations which is what I want to do. I have also told the owner if he gives me multiple locations I can give him a deal and still I get turned down. Thanx in advance.
  2. A1 Lawn@Landscapes

    A1 Lawn@Landscapes LawnSite Member
    Messages: 220

    #1 Diversify. Cold call other places but gas stations.
    #2 Get yourself a good sales book. I like "the one minute sale" and anything by Tom Hopkins. Just my 2 pennies.
  3. GreenStar

    GreenStar Banned
    Messages: 114

    with prospects like this there is only one way LOW BALL ya i know it sucks but that's how that kind of business flows. really everything with gas stations and such all cash no taxes. trust me my brother is a commercial carpenter building 3 of them and the guy's house he comes correct every month with a bag of cash and 2 large guy's
  4. CSRA Landscaping

    CSRA Landscaping LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,232

    Try this, if you go for local businesses, talk to the owner. No one else matters.

    Another, try to look for places that look shabby ... that is your "in."
    Another, make a list of different places in your area that you would like to do, apartments, shopping centers, townhouses, etc. and then get the address/contact info. and send them a letter of introduction. ONE week after you send the letters, call them, see if they're interested and then go to see the ones that are.

    Like A1 (Great name! ;) ) said - diversify!
  5. AztlanLC

    AztlanLC LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,051

    Commercial places look for a person reliable they can depend on, if you go there and tell 'em how much money you can save 'em they also are going to think how long this will last, you have to star a good name maybe doing residential service first, after you create a good image they are the ones who star csalling you, and believe me when that happens you will ask yourself why did I wanted to do commercial work? 1 out of 10 commercial accounts are worth.

    If you do commercial try to get at least a 2 year contract on big places because you are going to need more equipment.

    Put a clause where allows you to charge interest if they don't pay you every month.

    And there also thousand other thing but it's kind of late.

    good luck
  6. A1 Lawn@Landscapes

    A1 Lawn@Landscapes LawnSite Member
    Messages: 220

    I chose A1 Lawn & Landscapes because it is first in the phone book. You would be surprised how many people call and say " I just need this done and you were the first one in the book". We all need any edge we can get !!!!!!!!!!:D
  7. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,876

    Bunton Guy,

    I think your success is fairly normal for commercial maintenance. That's why I do very very little on the commercial side. I love working with residents. They are easy to sell, pay quicker, care more about their image and property, and are way more loyal than commercial complexes.

    All I can offer is this; don't count on the yellow pages to get you a lot of commercial requests. I have had very large ads 2 years running (I won't be doing that again any time soon.) and I got very few calls from commercial complexes.

    As for getting in with the builder, just start asking some builders. When you see a construction crew building somewhere just ask for the general's name and number. They are always looking for new landscapers (and for good reason, but I'll let you figure out that one.)
  8. Russ

    Russ LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 540

    Working for builders is tough. If you take on a builder, don't count your money till its in your bank. I just got paid last week for a builder job I did in April last year. They do pay but when times get tough for them, times get tough for you. Gotta agree with jimlewis about the commercial work. It can be a good source of high dollar cash flow but the profit margins are small and there is no loyality. Be careful with your proposals. Most property managers who are not "on site" are interested in only one thing PRICE, and you will probably be bidding against someone who got the bid because they bid under someone else. If you consider your work to be first class, look at the upper end residential market again. Set your pricing so it's fair to them and to YOU, do a good job and you will keep those customers until you make a mistake.
  9. Bunton Guy

    Bunton Guy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,920

    Thanx guys im taking all this good info in...keep it comming I really really really appreciate it.
  10. gogetter

    gogetter Banned
    Messages: 3,256

    I haven't done this, but just an idea. How about taking some GOOD, quality photos of some of your best work and take them to prospects where the property is in less then great shape. Tell them you can make thier property look as good as the ones in the photos.
    A picture's worth a thousand words.
    Good luck.


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