Working in these off months?

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by morning dew, Feb 10, 2002.

  1. morning dew

    morning dew LawnSite Member
    Messages: 23

    Here in Michigan, the weather has been very mild and not exactly winter-like.

    I am thinking about getting some letters out to our customer base to let them know that we can start doing things in the landscape. Things like tree and shrub pruning, bed edging, etc.

    Does anyone else think this way too? If so what kind of letter can be used to inform them without looking money hungry or desperate for work?:D
  2. There's an arborist advertising on the radio locally. He's telling people "now is the time to get any tree work done". He's right of course.

    I don't think it hurts at all to appear willing to work, maybe even a little anxious. It sends out the right message.

    I wouldn't send out a generalized letter. Unless it said something like "I'll be contacting you soon about your winter season needs".
    Then sell them directly on what they need. You know their yard, and are aware of what they need. Explain it to them.

    LCOs with more foresight than myself have their customers signed to an agreement. Then they just drop in as weather permits and do what's needed in the yard. I'm working on that.

  3. LawnLad

    LawnLad LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 738

    I wish we had more snow... but we don't. So we want to be as billable as possible during the winter as well.

    We have been mailing out post cards for dormant pruning to our mailing list. Our regular contract customers get the service anyways... so they're scheduled. But we wouldn't mind picking up another couple hundred hours of dormant pruning. We see it as something we'll grow over the next couple years so we can develop a steady income.

    My thought was to mail after the first of the year when things are slow, but getting closer to spring. It's also a lead into spring services - so maybe if we don't get the impulse call for dormant pruning, we'll get a residual effect... where people will call us later on for spring services as a result of the mailer.

    Not terribly expensive either... $.21 for first class postage, plus the cost to print the post card (bright green paper, black ink double sided) - costs about $.08 per unit. 5.5" x 8.5".
  4. 1MajorTom

    1MajorTom Former Moderator
    Messages: 6,073

    Quote: . 5.5" x 8.5".

    I'm just curious how you are able to send that size for 21 cents?

    When I called the post office to inquire about the size, I was told postcard regulation size was 4ΒΌ x 6.
  5. morning dew

    morning dew LawnSite Member
    Messages: 23

    Fella's, here in MI I am using a mailing service which they provide the bulk rate & it only costs me .15 per 5.5 x 8.5 postcard.

    You might want to look around locally and talk to these type of mailing companies.

  6. After posting to this thread, I got a call with the OK to renovate.
    This courtyard lawn is weak and browns out in summer.
    They'd been watering daily, and fertilizing way too much.

    I'm going to verticut it and topdress, heavy on the sand.
    I'll have to do it all by hand. But if it turns out OK,
    There's another 192K sq. ft. outside of the building.

  7. LawnLad

    LawnLad LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 738

    MajorTom - I'm going off of what my printer told me when I asked him how big I could go. We've mailed out about 2600 post cards at $.21... the ones that have been returned are ones with bad addresses. So - I guess it's okay. But I see what you're talking about on the USPS website... they do state the dimmensions you mention. Go figure - the post office doesn't know what it's talking about.

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