What would you do...

Discussion in 'Landscape Lighting' started by extlights, Oct 23, 2008.

  1. extlights

    extlights LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 439

    To help grow this industry if you could. Now I know that as business owners we help grow the industry with every person we talk to about it and every project we install. But let's look at the bigger picture here for a moment.

    I was looking at our demographics the other day and decided to look back at our total number of new projects installed over the last 5 years. While the numbers were fairly accurate with what I had thought in my head, realization suddenly kicked in. I remember the number of homes that there were on our last direct mailing list with our specified criteria. Now if I take 3 of our mailing lists and we were able to do new installs on 1/8th of those homes, we would be booked out for years and years....heck when new construction picks back up (maybe in 7-10 years!) that adds even more possibilities..

    So why don't more people purchase LVL systems for their homes? Is it the lack of community awareness of this industry? Is it a lack of education on what we can achieve with LVL (after all the big box stores have people brainwashed that "solar" is the way to go). Is it because of the price of a professionally installed system? I think if more people were educated on what we do our numbers would be way up. That's only my opinion however.

    People see a house with a nice system and might think to themselves..well that looks nice, but do they think about the safety and security that the system provides... or the energy savings that they can get by having lvl opposed to those big glare bombs on their homes? So what do you think could contribute to this industry being more publicly noticed? Yes I know some of you get booked throughout the year early in the season, but that's booked within your capibilities only. Me...I think it's about consumers being uneducated about our industry and what we do. Is there a reason for concern about future business?
  2. lx665

    lx665 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 147

    I feel price is the biggest reason more poeple do not have lighting systems.

  3. worx

    worx LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 252

    Pricing may be an issue, but I believe my biggest hurdle is the lack of home owner knowledge. I live in an area that is 30 years behind the rest of the country as it is. I certainly feel that with more home owner awareness I would grow much faster. I have told myself that even though the awareness is not there yet once it is I will be positioned to take advantage of it. So goes the growing pains I guess!

    If we could recruit those "global warming" marketeer's for LVL we would be a household standard.:cool2:
  4. Mike & Lucia

    Mike & Lucia LawnSite Member
    Messages: 67

    I think you hit the nail right on the head. As for price... there are price point for everybody and a provider will always enter the market to fill those points that are under served.

    Getting back to the issue of education. I wouldn't shout to loud here, but the reason we don't see more people jumping on the LVL wagon, is because of a lack of awareness and market education. The younger a new industry is, the fewer the buyers. As the buyers increase, so goes the amount of competition. And the circle feeds on itself... the more competitors peddling their wares, the more we collectively increase awareness and therefore demand. I feel like I'm beginning to sound more like an economist than a lighting designer, but that the gist of the business cycle. Ask any paver guy whose been in business 20 years - he'll tell you. Ask a network integrator how many millions he made between 1995 and the burst in 2002! It all stems from consumer awareness and market education.

    All that being said, I try to do my part. I offer myself as a speaker for garden clubs, universities and anyplace else like-minded people are likely to be interested in hearing about LVL and seeing pretty pictures. I will speak in December to landscape architecture students. I've spoken to landscape designers. Etc, etc....

    Of course these venues offer a low pressure way for me to get my name into the market, also. I've gained a few projects and some local recognition. But on a larger scale, it helps to educate the public. Maybe a few of them redirected their glare bombs, or toned down the wattage.

    I talk about energy efficiency, the future of solar and LED technologies, beautiful lighting techniques, and the difference in quality fixtures as opposed to those offered in a big box retail store.

    I believe what goes around comes around. Keep fighting the good fight!!

  5. NightLightingFX

    NightLightingFX LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 580

    Great point about speaking. I have made that a goal of mine this year to get as many speaking gigs as possible. I have a GREAT! presentation but I haven't been able to do as many presentations as I would like. About 4 mo. ago I spoke to a Rotary club and right now I am just finishing up a 42 fixture job I got from that presentation. Last mo. I was able to get in front of my local AIA (American Institute of Architects) and do a presentation. That was fun to get infront of a bunch of Architects. Last year I did an informal presentation infront of a Master Garder club and 6 months later got a small job from one of the members. I think doing presentations infront of a group is the BEST way to market yourself not the mention the educating benefits that Mike talks about. Any more ideas on how to get more speaking gigs?
  6. JoeyD

    JoeyD LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,933

    Great Post Mike! :clapping:

    We have said it for years but we compare LVL to the Roll up garage door of the late 80's early 90's. One guy in the Neighborhood put one in and the rest of the neighborhood followed suit. Now a home isnt built with out a roll up garage door!

    Hopefully we will see the same thing happen with LVL. One huge hurdle we have already got over was with design specification. It's rare a residential home is designed without outdoor LVL already specified or budgeted in. Now whether or not it gets eliminated or not is another deal. Thats obviously another hurdle we need to get over is showing homeowners it is a neccesity to have. Unfortunatley being the last phase of most projects it tends to get put on hold or eliminated due to blown budgets.
  7. INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting

    INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,102

    So true about being the last phase and losing out to blown budgets... this used to happen with me on a regular basis. Now I work very hard at getting involved in the design phase of new construction projects and then getting a signed and paid for installation agreement as soon as construction begins. This can and is justified by the amount of infrastructure work that goes into a new construction project; conduit, chases, power supplies, pre-wiring, rough-ins, etc all need to be done throughout the building process to achieve a truly built in and custom lighting system.


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