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where to start looking for work

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Bucky Hughes, Apr 6, 2011.

  1. Bucky Hughes

    Bucky Hughes LawnSite Member
    Messages: 3

    I new at looking for customers n not sure where good place to look for bids and new jobs any help would be great. Im not looking to over do it just want few accounts to get started
  2. Midwest_cutter

    Midwest_cutter LawnSite Member
    Messages: 34

    Keep a close eye on your local newspaper.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  3. JB1

    JB1 LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,904

    thats kinda like not being able to see the forrest for the trees.
  4. IES

    IES LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 296

    Unemployment office? Monster.com maybe?
    Posted via Mobile Device
  5. grincon

    grincon LawnSite Member
    Messages: 246

    Drive to a neighborhood with all your equipment and start knocking on doors. With the weather warming up you should pick up at least a one time gig.
  6. TriageLawn

    TriageLawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 49

    I got into the lawn business by accident. 25 years ago, I was cutting grass in the neighborhood as way to make money, so I could go on family trips and have my own money. I didn't advertise. I didn't market but somehow I got alot of business and people were paying me to cut their yards.

    I was like you my friend. I didn't know where to start or how to begin. So one day I was out cutting my neighbors yard and then it hit me, it hit me so hard I stopped cutting and starting thinking. How about I cut someones lawn for free and advertise like that? I just laughed it off and forgot about it for about 2 hours. Then I watched a show called Yard Crashers, I think. It was a show where they find the ugliest yard on the block and make it over. I was like, "Thats what I will do"

    So I devised a plan and executed it with impeccable results. I chose a neighboring subdivision and found a yard that was hideous. The yard had spots, the bermuda was growing over the sidewalk, the grass was 3 different colors and to top it off, she had just been fined by the HOA for not maintaining a well kept yard.

    I knew it was a long shot, so I convinced her to let me maintain her yard and in exchange for my free services, all she had to do was let me place my sign in front of her yard with my flyers and pricing information. She trusted me from the very beginning, so I knew this would be an easy sell.

    Well to make this long story short. That one yard in that ONE subdivision gave me 8 clients. 2 of those clients wanted their yards done like the ugly yard, the exposure was great because I was referrred by alot of people.

    I just want to make one point. It is a must to think outside the box. Sometimes traditional methods will not work and you will need to reinvent yourself and your business. I recently did a subdivision where i was offering free lawn service for one day. Sounds crazy doesn't it??? But I gained such an advantage because people that wanted that offer had to come to me and talk to me directly. I gained 11 customers from that subdivision and from that very subdivision, I gained another 2 clients that wanted their yards completely made over.

    I can guarantee you this my friend. You're not going to get anywhere by competing with the rest of the guys that JUST CUT GRASS. You need to create a culture around your business.

    1. Start a newsletter
    2 Go to the park and hand out free water but with your BUSINESS NAME and logo on the water bottle.

    3. Put a sign on your car
    4. Enter into a business network : Joining others that can help you benefit from their business. For instance, become friends with a landscaper, become friends with a turf care company, become friends with people that have access to homeowners. And then once you guys make a business connection, you can form your own business network and make money that way. Do you get my drift? Network with those that can benefit your business and services.

    5. Think outside the box
    6. FREE is not such a bad word

    I joined a network called THE UNTOUCHABLES. The name sounds weird but can you believe some people love it. We are made up of.....

    1. Turf Care Company
    2. Landscaper
    3. A/C Heater Company
    4. Gutter Cleaning
    5. Painters
    6. Interior Designer
    7. Roofers
    6. Mobile Detailing

    There are 10 of us but I can't quite remember the others. I have access to all their customers and they have access to mine. We've gained new customers and let me tell you WE ARE ROLLING.

    We all approach it as something WE NEED. These are tough and DARK economic times and WE all need each other. Going at it alone is possible but such a long process. Create a network and sell yourself.
  7. DocClark

    DocClark LawnSite Member
    Messages: 76

    Triagelawn, I like your way of thinking! I've combined the biggest newspaper advertising you can get in our paper, truck decals that are big and colorful, Door hangers that have a line where we write the esimate on, craigslist, and I have 2 residential lawns that are getting free weekly service in exchange for putting up yard signs, and I'm trying to get one small commercial lawn to do the same with.

    I'm hoping that with all these things taking place, I will be able to get enough work to sustain through the year. I also am doing complete landscaping minus sprinklers so I'm hoping this will pay off.

    Do you have any other ideas that you would be willing to share?
  8. zopi

    zopi LawnSite Member
    Messages: 53

    Go blow thirty buck on a book called guerilla marketing...and yes there is nothing wrong with blowing an hour cutting some ones grass for free...every now and then I do some work for older people on fixed incomes..like tree work they definitely cannot afford..have made alot of free firewood and lumber logs that way..I have a sawmill too..just ask them to recommend me around the neighborhood and give them some cards.
  9. cslawnandlandscape

    cslawnandlandscape LawnSite Member
    from CT
    Messages: 53

    TriageLawn has a great idea there with the networking group that I never thought of. Thank you for a new idea. :clapping:

    Like DocClark said check with your newspaper, the ads might not be too expensive. An ad slightly larger than a business card runs $130.00 & up in the paper that is sent to all the homes for free in my area. 1 clients pays for that and some.

    Craigslist has gotten me a few calls (it has been a mix in customers both good and not good). I mailed out 200 letters to select areas I wanted to hone in on. Got 5 calls and 2 clients. Paid for.

    Doorhangers finally got me a couple calls putting out 1,000 in the area. $189 for 2,500 from Adea's and it's paid for now. The rest are going out in a flash in the morning.

    If you can do it get nice clean simple looking truck decals so your name is visible(that's my last step I'm going at)

    Make sure when you go out on estimates or even going around town you can promote your business. Be neat, and professional looking on all estimates. Queensboro.com has good quality uniform pieces for really good prices.

    Be knowledgeable when talking to prospective clients and listen to the client. Let them do the talking and you'll know exactly what they need and add your input in when necessary (which at times will be)
  10. jdutcher003

    jdutcher003 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 181

    This info is very helpful to me guys. I hope some of this works for me! I am going to try it. Thank you

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