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LawnHog
10-16-2011, 06:15 PM
Just joined the site after watching about 3 hours of video on Steve's youtube.
Starting my business in the spring and cant wait to talk lawn care with you guys!

-Chad-

Steve
10-17-2011, 03:49 PM
Hi Chad,

Welcome to our forum!

What got you interested in starting your own business and any thoughts on getting started this fall into winter, to get a jump on next spring's customers?

LawnHog
10-17-2011, 04:04 PM
Hi Chad,

Welcome to our forum!

What got you interested in starting your own business and any thoughts on getting started this fall into winter, to get a jump on next spring's customers?

I put post in the the new business owners section detailing all my gear and what not. I was really hoping to start full time hardcore doing lawn care and various other jobs but apparently from what other forum members have told me. I should just keep my job I have now because lawn care essentially doesnt pay very well.

jymie
10-17-2011, 07:36 PM
I put post in the the new business owners section detailing all my gear and what not. I was really hoping to start full time hardcore doing lawn care and various other jobs but apparently from what other forum members have told me. I should just keep my job I have now because lawn care essentially doesn't pay very well.

Lawn care is the stepping stone to other things, such as mulch installs etc. Developing that customer trust always leads to more work. Getting testimonials from work you have done leads to more work. If your aggressive in how you approach it you will have success, expect each year to grow, but don't expect the 1st year to be over the top as it won't be. Establish a presence in your area, as more people see your work truck on their street the more they will use your service. Market, market and market some more. Never be afraid to hand a business card to a total stranger.

First and foremost you must have a website.

There are a few ways to go about advertising your business. I have done:


Door Hangers
Post Cards
Display Advertising in my local pennysaver. They have a nice page inside they call Local Business Directory, it looks like a bulletin board.
Business Cards to every one I meet in Restaurants, Gas Stations, Bars and anywhere where there are people.


The best time to start is always. The peak time would be a month and a half before the grass begins to grow, then continue till the end of the season.

I drop off business cards to any place that has a bulletin board, like grocery stores, department stores Laundromats etc. You can get business card holders from Artie on this site. http://www.marketingholders.com/CARDCUES-CARD-HOLDERS-FREE-SHIPPING-CRDQS.htm

They hold probably 25 business Cards. Check out his other products on the site, he has a lot of stuff that could be useful.

Have magnets made with your company logo and phone number on them, one for both front doors and one for the back of your vehicle. People behind you can't see the sides of your truck when you drive around with no trailer. Good free advertising that way. This is a great site and the magnets are excellent quality: http://www.buildasign.com , I also order signs for the front lawn from them, also great quality for a fair price.

Utilize the free methods to advertise, google search free classified advertising


Craigslist
Backpage
topix.com
thumbtack.com
buysellcommunity.com
kijiji.com


Add your business to every business directory in your area


Yellowpages.com
Yellowbook.com
merchantcircle.com
manta.com
local.com
kudzu.com
thumbtack.com
yellowbot.com
citysearch.com
superpages.com
local.yahoo.com
superads.com
landscaping-companies.com
neighborhood.letsrenovate.com
start.cortera.com
allpages.com
local.garden.org
insiderpages.com
bizhwy.com
getfreelisting.com
mylocalservices.us
diyodp.com
evliving.com
freebusinessdirectory.com
volta.net
freeonlinebusinessdirectory.com


Submit your website and business to all the search engines, then submit to the maps of each of the major search engines

google maps
bing maps
yahoo maps

Maps info show up before search results so this is crucial.

See this thread for more:

http://www.gopherforum.com/showthread.php?t=13299

Hope this helps you get started! Best of luck!

jymie
10-17-2011, 07:44 PM
I also want to mention that in the 3 years that I have been in this business, I have 172 contacts in my gopherhaul program that I have either done work for or have gotten an inquiry from. Not to shabby.

mowman1970
10-18-2011, 08:34 PM
I must say you are off to a good start with watching the videos, also even if you know quite a bit about lawn care, do yourself a favor a take the Lawn Care business School (http://www.gopherforum.com/index.php?pageid=GopherHaul-Lawn-Care-Business-School) class. The insight from all of those in the business will help you. If you don't have some financial help, be prepared to eat beans and rice. Always know that it is your company and you make it or break it. Craigslist is an awesome way to build clientele that is freeeeeee. Within a month I had 8 new customers just on my small ad. Word of mouth has brought me many more. And by all means necessary, never allow someone to discourage you!!!! We can all have it rough, but it is the ones who stick it out that reap the rewards!!!!

LawnHog
10-19-2011, 06:36 PM
I certainly was all gung ho after watching the videos and coming up with things I could supplement my lawn care business with. Power washing, gutter cleaning, leaf removal...etc. But frankly after to talking to people on here, and hearing that the first year they only brought home anywhere from 6k-15k the first year, there is no way I can get into this business. Even having practically all the equipment I need. My salary must far exceed that to support my family.
I certainly wasnt expecting to get "rich" off of lawn care but I certainly was under the impression I could at least make a decent living.
Its kind of heart breaking because I love lawn care and landscaping and such and was thrilled to maybe get to make a living that way. But if its anything like the way people on here have described. I wont be able to pay my bills or feed my family

jymie
10-19-2011, 11:11 PM
I certainly was all gung ho after watching the videos and coming up with things I could supplement my lawn care business with. Power washing, gutter cleaning, leaf removal...etc. But frankly after to talking to people on here, and hearing that the first year they only brought home anywhere from 6k-15k the first year, there is no way I can get into this business. Even having practically all the equipment I need. My salary must far exceed that to support my family.
I certainly wasnt expecting to get "rich" off of lawn care but I certainly was under the impression I could at least make a decent living.
Its kind of heart breaking because I love lawn care and landscaping and such and was thrilled to maybe get to make a living that way. But if its anything like the way people on here have described. I wont be able to pay my bills or feed my family

You could work it on the weekends to build it to the point where you can just do this business. Also there is daylight in the evenings after work during the week that you could utilize to cut some. Just some thoughts...

Steve
10-20-2011, 04:13 PM
Its kind of heart breaking because I love lawn care and landscaping and such and was thrilled to maybe get to make a living that way. But if its anything like the way people on here have described. I wont be able to pay my bills or feed my family

You never know what kind of results you will get until you start to experiment with it.

I think a key thing to remember is that nothing good comes easy. Most things have a barrier to entry.

What is your view now on what you may do?