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realhuntin
12-08-2007, 07:34 PM
Christmas Cards: how many people have sent out pre-printed Holiday Cards?

How may have sent out HAND WRITTEN Holiday Cards? I do hand written cards so it is more personal.

Does anyone like myself put a little something in those cards. like a coupon or personal note offering any Holiday Discounts on winter time servises or even a free cut & trim for the up comming season?


Does anyone send cookies, candy or fruit baskets to suppliers?

Just something I do when we send out cards they are hand deliverd with a samll poinsettia. This is our first year, years before when I was operating another business we had over 2500 customer so this was not any way fesable so we sent cards with 1 free month monitoring to all resi-customers and cards alone to the larger business's.

Think about it, if you were the customer wouldnt you be supprised to receive a card with 1 free cut & trim coupon in it?

Let me know what you think please.

Thanks Tim

Steve
12-08-2007, 10:48 PM
Great idea!

What do you suggest spending on a small gift like the flowers for your customer?

http://www.nzflower.co.nz/images/pot_poinsettia_med.jpg

pmblair
12-09-2007, 12:09 AM
I bet if you worked with your local landscape suppliers on a regular basis for seed, fertilizer and such, they may just give you a good price on poinsettias, too...

realhuntin
12-09-2007, 03:42 AM
We purchased #1 & # 3 pots total of 200 @ $2 each we sold the small #1 pots @ $5 each or 5 for $20, the larger pots #3 we sold straight $15 each.

I got these from the same place my landscape supplier got theirs from a plant/greenhouse supplier. but as you see we had to buy large quanities.

We are sold out of the small #1 and only have a handful of the #3 left so we did well with this.

We set up a both @ the Farmers Market. It is only open on the weekends 8-5 Sat and 8-3 on Sun, another way to get our name out there.

Steve
12-09-2007, 06:10 AM
Oh that is fascinating! So you give them to your customers and you also sell them at a booth!

What kind of marketing do you do at your booth?

Do you have any pictures you could show us of this or of what you hand out to your customers?

I'd love to include some in a future GopherHaul.

realhuntin
12-09-2007, 06:59 AM
Quote[/b] (Team Gopher @ Dec. 09 2007,6:10)]Oh that is fascinating! So you give them to your customers and you also sell them at a booth!

What kind of marketing do you do at your booth?


Do you have any pictures you could show us of this or of what you hand out to your customers?


I'd love to include some in a future GopherHaul.
We have business cards that we stick in the flower pot and whatever seasson it is we hand out flyers with discount coupons.

Picture no I didnt think to do that and the season is over for the market, we did the fall (with mums) and winter with poinsettia's and flyers for each. Next year we are going to do the Spring (late Mar, April), Fall Late Sept, Oct, & Winter (Week before Thanksgiving to about the 1st week or 2 of Dec).

That would be cool what would you need from me?

Steve
12-09-2007, 07:04 AM
Quote[/b] ]That would be cool what would you need from me?


Well any pictures you can post along with what you do is great because I think we are all so visual. We can relate and learn things easier when we have a picture that shows what we are doing.

Then I can also include the pictures in the GopherHaul show because it is a visual medium as well.

They also could work great on your site for a news section or an about us section.

realhuntin
12-09-2007, 08:18 AM
Quote[/b] (Team Gopher @ Dec. 09 2007,7:04)]They also could work great on your site for a news section or an about us section.
Very good point since I have a NEWS Section on my site.

tjgray
12-20-2007, 12:30 PM
We passed out mums for the first time this fall and have done hand written Christmas cards since we started 4 years ago...

Both go over really well...

Our customers think we are just so attentive and kind and we get a chance to communicate and touch base with everyone at least a couple of times during the holidays http://www.gophergraphics.com/forum/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif

Steve
12-20-2007, 12:35 PM
Do you have any pictures of the mum displays you gave out? Which month did you hand them out and do you have any suggestions on how best to do it? What time etc? Any card attached to it?

tjgray
12-20-2007, 04:02 PM
The really nice thing about my position in this company is that I never really have to do any of the physical hard work http://www.gophergraphics.com/forum/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif

Yes I take care of all the office work, answering the phone and returning emails, marketing ideas, website, financials, A/R and A/P, and a ton of other stuff involved on the administration side but very rarely will you catch me pushing a mower.

I do go out on route with the guys a couple of days a week when I want to...

Usually though I go on Saturday when I know our customers will be home. I take Hami Bones and we visit http://www.gophergraphics.com/forum/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif

After chatting with our customers a bit I might take some new pictures for our growing collection and then if the guys aren't finished I usually help out.

Hami Bones and I delivered the mums to all of our customers personally during the first and second weeks of October. Inside each mum I placed a happy fall message that I designed and printed out on Avery business card paper http://www.gophergraphics.com/forum/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif

All of our customers thought we were so sweet and they always give Hami Bones plenty of scratches and pets. It is fun for both of us and gives me a chance to speak with all of them about how they are feeling regarding our services or up-coming lawn projects they might want to start...

Steve
12-20-2007, 04:32 PM
You really are doing a wonderful job!

Now when you are handing out these flowers do you make it a point to only give them if someone is at the home or will you leave them at the door?

tjgray
12-20-2007, 05:32 PM
Thanks Steve! I like to think that I do a good job http://www.gophergraphics.com/forum/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif

I think it is important for every business to have someone that will do the PR work...and not only do I consider myself good at it but I enjoy it as well.

The guys are too busy doing the actual physical work to take a lot of time just chatting it up with our customers http://www.gophergraphics.com/forum/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif

Most of the mums we handed to our customers but there were a few we just left at the door...

In fact a funny story...

Our customer calls us on the phone and asked us if we were out on his property that day to which we replied no. He goes on to tell us that his wife was home and someone pulled up at his house in a van and proceeded to walk around his property looking into his windows. He then tells us that they left a card and that they have the same name as us...

After assuring him that we would never be so rude as to try and look into his windows, we asked him what the contact info on the card was and he told us that there was none. That the card only said Happy Fall, The Other Side Lawn Company. After hearing this we realized the card I put in his mums must have fallen out lol

Turns out the van that had pulled up to his home was the cable company http://www.gophergraphics.com/forum/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif

Steve
12-20-2007, 06:14 PM
That is very interesting! Do you ever wonder if because you do all this, you have better customer retention than other lawn care operators? Do you ever ask around about that?

realhuntin
12-21-2007, 10:40 PM
I think we do because the extra touch of giving back something and being personal with the customers brings them back, we have 100% return for next season.

Steve
09-13-2008, 10:41 AM
This is a post everyone should start thinking about for this holiday season.

Is anyone planning on doing this, this year?

You could sell poinsettias and home made wreaths. This is a great way to meet new people in your area.

Gino Bargellini
09-13-2008, 05:28 PM
We gave out poinsettias last year. Lowes selld them for 1.50 on black friday. So we drove around and delivered them. It was around dinnertime, so we left them on the door steps with cards and coupons. One for them and one for a friend. Only 2 people ever said thank you, and most people used both coupons for themselves. It was very dissapointing.

:mad:

Steve
09-13-2008, 05:51 PM
Hi Gino,

and most people used both coupons for themselves. It was very dissapointing.

What kind of coupons were they? Can you tell us a little about what they said?
Why do you feel it was disappointing?

I can understand if you were upset they didn't say thank you, but if they said thank you in other ways, maybe it could be viewed as a success. Did they stay with you next year? Did these coupons increase your profits?

Share with me your thoughts on this.