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jasonw
10-22-2009, 10:25 AM
I don't get it. I have put up fliers, handed out business cards, put adds on CL and the local papers yet still I sit here with no calls at all. Several weeks have gone by with no calls at all. This is getting depressing, is this the economy, am I doing something wrong? I want to suck all my marketing money back because I feel stupid paying for marketing when its not even getting my calls for quotes or anything.

picframer
10-22-2009, 02:21 PM
I don't get it. I have put up fliers, handed out business cards, put adds on CL and the local papers yet still I sit here with no calls at all. Several weeks have gone by with no calls at all. This is getting depressing, is this the economy, am I doing something wrong? I want to suck all my marketing money back because I feel stupid paying for marketing when its not even getting my calls for quotes or anything.

How often do you stop and talk to a customer who may have a lawn or other issue you could fix and explain how you could cure the problem for them, when you see another provider at a place and let's say their quality doesn't meet yours, do you ever talk to the home owner to see if they are satusfied.....very, very few people will come to you unless one of their friends have told them about you, you need to go to them.

jasonw
10-22-2009, 02:29 PM
I don't do any of that but it may not be a bad idea. I have thought about walking around and knocking on doors whose yard is in despair. I'm not sure I would feel right trying to steel a client away from someone ells by waiting until they leave and seeing if the customer is satisfied. Maybe its a last resort but I am not sure I feel good about that.

picframer
10-22-2009, 05:52 PM
I don't do any of that but it may not be a bad idea. I have thought about walking around and knocking on doors whose yard is in despair. I'm not sure I would feel right trying to steel a client away from someone ells by waiting until they leave and seeing if the customer is satisfied. Maybe its a last resort but I am not sure I feel good about that.

Take this for what it's worth, I am in this to make money, if it was a neighbour who mowed a lawn across the street and I knew I would do a better job I would be across the street and I would get the account, this is bussiness my friend, people are not going to track you down.

By dropping cards on properties that needed a service that we offered, I would estimate it generated well over $200,000 in business, that is not pocket change.

Not being critical but step out of the box, up to the plate and hit a few home runs, the first few might be awkward but buddy if you want the ship to come in, don't wait go after it as it's there waiting for you.

jasonw
10-22-2009, 06:33 PM
Understood. Not feeling right about knowingly trying to take someone ellses job maybe I can skip that part but for sure there is more ground pounding I can do all the way from taking to homeowners with nasty yards to talking to an old man the I see fighting his mower trying to keep his lawn nice.

StartALawnCareBusiness
10-22-2009, 07:19 PM
Jason:

Don't limit yourself to problem yards (those in disrepair or the guy fighting with his lawn mower).

Target nice yards too. Prospective clients with nice lawns know how much work it takes to keep them nice. They are proud of their lawns and willing to pay a good price to keep them looking good.

Talk to them. If you're just starting out, ask what their secrets are. If they do the work themselfs, point out areas where you can be of service (pulling weeds, raking leaves). Once your foot is in the door, and you prove yourself, you can turn them into regular customers.

It's a mistake to only target bad yards.

Remember: Great customers beget great customers.

Keith
Start A Lawn Care Business (http://www.StartALawnCareBusiness.com)

picframer
10-22-2009, 08:31 PM
I am curious if I have a great looking lawn, what could ever be said that would even interest me in moving? This would have to be the toughest sale in the world to make.

Case(s) in point....

I am buying my daughter a car for Christmas but early as she is coming back from Costa Rica in a few weeks so I was car shopping this evening, I drive a 2010 TDI Jetta, she likes the Toyota Yaris and Echo, I explained to the sales guy what I was doing and what I was looking for, he showed me a few options but proceeded to ask about my Jetta, it's a loaded highline with a special rim package, I almost bought an Audi as I love the look but I run diesel anyhow he gets side tracked and tries to tell me how the Camry would out perform it, it just pi$$ed me off as he didn't know what he was talking about, the Jetta will blow a Hybrid away in every sense of the word and it was not me that wants a car.....I won't go back, I will buy her a VW diesel.

On job sites I get sales guys stop by offering their brand of excavator or tractors on a regular basis, I get emails from suppliers wanting my business, I am very polite but I am not interested in any sense of the word, what I have works perfect, my equipment performs way beyond my expectations so why would I be interested it trying anything else..?

It's not that I totally disagree but if you want to make money and get your name on the street fast, start with the lawn from hell and turn it into a golf course, I have done it many times which is why our growth is nuts this year.

I am not intrerested in a customer with a very nice looking lawn, a nice landscape or a very nice driveway, wasting my time and theirs as I would be shocked if they would even talk to me and if it's not broke they won't fix it.

Steve
10-23-2009, 02:24 AM
Well the thing I wonder is, when you target messy yards, are they messy because the homeowner is broke and can not afford to clean it up? Or are there usually other reasons to explain the condition of a yard in really bad shape?

jasonw
10-23-2009, 02:40 AM
Well the thing I wonder is, when you target messy yards, are they messy because the homeowner is broke and can not afford to clean it up? Or are there usually other reasons to explain the condition of a yard in really bad shape?

Steve, My area is full of retired people that for no better reason just cant keep up with the yard work. I hear it time and time again from my current customers "We like a nice yard, if not for you doing it we would be forced to sell the house and get a place with 0 upkeep" There are also a lot of rentals in the area and lets be honest, most renters can care less what the yard looks like, If the lawn is nice they may feel bad putting the broken down cars on it. On the other hand if its not presentable the city can and will site them for it. Its right in the papers we had to sign when we purchased our house. "Anything viewable from the street must be clutter free and presentable" so the landlords "most of them don't even live in the area" may pay to keep it presentable. I am currently doing work for a real estate investor from the bay area who owns houses up here. My job is to make them nice so they will sell better. The houses look sharp but unfortunately they arnt selling "The current market conditions are not my fault"

picframer
10-23-2009, 03:32 AM
Well the thing I wonder is, when you target messy yards, are they messy because the homeowner is broke and can not afford to clean it up? Or are there usually other reasons to explain the condition of a yard in really bad shape?

Good Question and I guess it depends on what one means by messy or how far do you go.

Reasons I have found is the homeowner has not used the right products, generally they do not overseed, they had grubs or cinch bugs at one point and didn't take the time to find out how to bring it back, poor quality cutting, trees that have fallen, they had a quote but it was too expensive.

The target market for me is middle and upper middle class, generally speaking they just do not have time but they would like to to look nice.

If a yard is full of junk I would never stop, the only clean up jobs we do is leaves, branches and trees.

Steve
10-24-2009, 08:37 AM
I am not intrerested in a customer with a very nice looking lawn, a nice landscape or a very nice driveway, wasting my time and theirs as I would be shocked if they would even talk to me and if it's not broke they won't fix it.

This whole discussion fascinates me. It makes me rethink things.

Have you ever had a situation where a customer with a nice property did want to switch to you? If so why?

On job sites I get sales guys stop by offering their brand of excavator or tractors on a regular basis, I get emails from suppliers wanting my business, I am very polite but I am not interested in any sense of the word, what I have works perfect, my equipment performs way beyond my expectations so why would I be interested it trying anything else..?

Do they ever do or say anything to try and get you to sample their service or product? Have they ever offered you a deal where you thought to yourself, 'heck, I gotta try that.'

Or do each of them basically do the same thing and offer the same pitch?

Have any of them ever blown you away to the point where you felt you learned something about sales from them?