So we keep taking this guy's customers...

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Precision Lawns, Apr 15, 2005.

  1. Precision Lawns

    Precision Lawns LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 283

    This is our first season and one of the very first people to hire us was the preacher at our church. We figured, while we were mowing him we may as well put flyers out in the neighborhood and see if we get any nibbles. Well, every time we've been out to that neighborhood we have had 1 or 2 more people express interest after seeing the lawns we cut (preacher had the nicest lawn in the neighborhood to begin with, and now we've got it looking even nicer), and every one of them has signed a yearly maintenance agreement. We are now up to 5 lawns in that neighborhood and we have the feeling we're not near done yet, since this is only 3 weeks into the season.

    Come to find out that every one of our new clients used the same LCO last season! What's even more surprising (but makes us feel pretty good about ourselves) is that we charge $5 MORE per cut and mow TWICE as often! He only mowed every other week. So these people are now paying more than DOUBLE what they used to - and they're happy about it! Apparently he was just really unreliable and didn't do the greatest work to begin with. All of them have made some variation of this comment to us, "well, you're more expensive than the last guy, but you do really good work, so I guess you get what you pay for." It's nice to have customers who realize this!

    Since we didn't lowball by any means, we don't feel that bad about taking his customers, but we're expecting to hear from him pretty soon...

    We keep reading on this site that word-of-mouth and our work will be our best advertizing, and boy were they right! We only put out 1000 flyers and had 5 customers to start the season 3 weeks ago, now we're up to 13 and the calls keep coming. It's very encouraging.
  2. ProStreetCamaro

    ProStreetCamaro LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,278

    Congrats and keep up the good work!! Word of mouth is indeed the best advertisement possible in this business. Be friendly, prompt and do quality work and you will do just fine. payup
  3. lawnranger44

    lawnranger44 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 370

    Thats awesome! Those are always the best customers, the ones who know what they are paying for. Treat them like gold, and i'm sure they will give you some good referrals.
  4. beransfixitinc

    beransfixitinc LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 592

    If the guy was really that bad and unreliable.. are you really taking his customers? Or are you rescuing them?
  5. SoloMow

    SoloMow LawnSite Member
    Messages: 173

    I don't want to rain on anyone's parade. In my area of North Texas, for me to pick up an account who is willing to pay more than DOUBLE, the last guy would have to leave empty beer cans in the backyard and string-trim the family pet! :D But, if it's happening for you in TN, then keep up the good work! :D
  6. Cut

    Cut LawnSite Member
    Messages: 133

    I was passing out door hangers and got tired after about 60 (cause of large hills) and went home. Got 2 calls and landed 1 $60 mow job (take me an hour to mow)! :)
  7. pjslawncare/landscap

    pjslawncare/landscap LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,410

    Sound like u found some customers that like to get value for what they pay for. Its amazing how a crappy LCO can make U look so good. Ive gotten many good customers the same way as well. Thank god for crappy LCO's
  8. carolinacutter

    carolinacutter LawnSite Member
    Messages: 38

    I knew of the exact same thing, only I was a liitle too late to get them, but this fool gave up 2 sets of next door neighbors (4 houses) never had to move the truck and they ALL wanted twice a week service the math......yeah he (had) a sweet deal for a while...
  9. Ptunia

    Ptunia LawnSite Member
    Messages: 13

    Good luck when he finally calls you. We had an interesting run-in with another company in a similar situation. We send out proposals every week to homeowners associations and commercial customers. We sent a proposal to a condo association and they were very interested. Come to find out the guy they have been using charges $60/month more than we quoted and uses a trimmer in the backyards instead of mowing. He spends about 1 1/2 - 2 hrs per week and charges them over $600/month. I ran the numbers twice and could not justify his price.
    I got a call last week from him threating the kick my a** if I accepted the job, because he said I had no right to bid on a job that he has had for 8 yrs.
    (How am I supposed to know who cuts what or for how long they have cut it?) :angry:

    Needless to say, my husband called him right back and "straightened him out". The point is, some people take things as a personal attack, even though business is business and there is nothing vicious involved.
    GOOD-LUCK! Hope he isn't like the guy I ran into!
  10. LawnScapers of Dayton

    LawnScapers of Dayton LawnSite Silver Member
    Male, from Dayton, OH
    Messages: 2,572

    When customers leave a poor LCO you really are not taking them away. The Poor LCO has given them to you.

    I don't have to spend a dollar on advertising. All I have to do is good work, and be reliable..........I have already turned 4-5 customer away since my plate is full.


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