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View Full Version : New to the forum... not to the biz though


musician/lawnman
02-11-2008, 11:58 PM
I've been using gopher since ahh about june & checkin' out the site periodically & just never registered? *Idunno why?

But I live in Southwest florida My father ran was a lco for about 10 years so I was like live-in help back then... Now (13 years later) I'm married, 2 kids & an 8 month old business of my own that's doing pretty well so far.... about what we expected. *This 1st off season is really REALLY sucking!

I'm running all echo hand tools (& some assorted 2nd hand junk of mixed manufaturers) & a 52" Yazoo Kees, enclosed trailer yada yada yada.

There, I'll consider myself introduced!

Steve
02-12-2008, 08:00 AM
Hi Chuck,

Welcome to our forum! What do you think helped you most about working with your dad in the lawn care business for those years?

Did he teach you much about marketing your business? Do any business lessons stand out?

musician/lawnman
02-12-2008, 09:56 AM
We'll may father was always very business minded & owned a business of some sort most of his life. The business owner mindset of watching the p&l, budgeting, planning was definately past down to me I think more through genetics & by example than anything. Back then though I was too young to really care about the business end of it though. Where it helped was:
1) I already knew very well what I was getting into & how hard the work can be.
2) knowing how rewarding owning a business can be when done right.
3) The basic knowledges of how to do the jobs right & how to install & care for the plants & trees.

I'm sure there is more but why ramble on & on.
My father past away (of pancreatic cancer at the age of 50) late in 06 prior to my starting this company so unfortunately I don't get to take advantage of any of the business insight & lessons learned that he might have been able to share with me... would have made this easier I'm sure.

Steve
02-12-2008, 03:13 PM
Hi Chuck,

I am very sorry about what happened with your father.

What are you most looking forwards to this year as far as business goals?

Also how involved do you get with your community? Do you do things that are community focused that also promote your business? Like coaching? Do you promote that you do these things on your website?

musician/lawnman
02-13-2008, 06:59 PM
We'll I want to bring on as many more annual accounts as I can this year (I'll take the per cuts too at this point) so I've restructured my pricing program a bit. I knew this 1st off season with the new biz would be bad & it is, it's brutal! granted Jan was leaps & bounds bettter than dec. but still.... I would like to get busy enough to need a full time helper for this summer season (did everything by myself last summer) then next summer I'd like to be able to bring someone on & keep them on year round full time.

No I haven't been coaching or anything.... my schedule is insane as it is. since it got slow 2 months ago it's been something like this: I run my business & tend to my accounts 4 days a week, I work 2 days in an auto shop (part time- seasonal) my wife (stay at home mom) works sundays in another auto shop, & teaches dance (tap, jazz etc.) 2 nights a week. We have 2 kids 1.5 yr old boy & a 3 yr old girl. On top of that I am the frontman ( lead guitar & vocals ) in a hard rock band that reheases 2 nights a week & plays out 4-5 times a month. www.myspace.com/jacksomebodymusic
Not an ideal schedule & I have probably too much on my plate but it is what it is. The band is the only recreation in there & I've been doing it about 18 yrs now so it's not going anywhere. The rest needs to be done to pay the bills!

Steve
02-13-2008, 07:09 PM
Hi Chuck,

I am listening to your music right now!

http://a913.ac-images.myspacecdn.com/images01/109/m_abb70aff488306971f9508bb05de41c8.jpg

Ok we have to combine these two interests somehow.

What if your band played to raise money for a local charity? Then you could send out a press release that you are pulling this all together. You also would mention you are the owner of a local lawn care business and plug your business name. Maybe look for charities that are green industry related? Or environmentally related?

Then I would also do something about plugging your lawn care business on your myspace page for your band.

Have you thought of ideas where you could cross promote these two interests and grab media attention?

Another thing I'd love to do would be to use your music in the intro of my GopherHaul show and of course I would plug your band.

musician/lawnman
02-13-2008, 08:28 PM
Hey, *I'm glad you like the tunes! *I work hard at & write most of the music myself.
As soon as I figure out how to get back into my profile & read my mail on here hehe.... *I'll ask you to give me your regular email address so you can pick a song & I'll email you a mp3 file for it..... *I just got an idea that maybe we could work out.... *

Yes to some extent I have done some work to cross the 2. *for the local shows here in my own area I usually put out flyers for the shows & at the bottom it says event sponsored by AAA Quality Clean cut, Then on the back is an add & a coupon for my services. *Also, when playing out of town I pull my smaller unmarked trailer for all the band equipment. *For the shows within my lawn care market area, I empty my enclosed lawn trailer & load the band gear up.... so my billboard is out front all night long. *When I first started the business I was handing out cards at shows & the other guys in the group felt that was bit much so I backed off a little but I still do from time to time!

Steve
02-14-2008, 10:38 AM
That is awesome! Do you have any pics of you unloading or loading your music equipment in your lawn care trailer? I could totally use that for the show! Could you post some?

You can also email me here (slow@gophersoftware.com).

musician/lawnman
02-14-2008, 04:28 PM
I'll take some shots of that this saturday night for you. *You wan't stills or a video clip? *Let me know.

Off topic.... What does it cost to upgrade from the basic gopher to plus or whatever the next step up is? I'd like to be able to track expenses within the program.

Steve
02-14-2008, 04:35 PM
Chuck,

I'd love both stills and some video! That would be awesome!

Here is a link to the upgrade pricing (http://www.gophersoftware.com/index.cgi?page=pricing).

musician/lawnman
02-24-2008, 01:31 AM
Ok, I got some pics for you, I failed to get video though I can do it on our next gig.

Heres some shots of the truck, trailer & lawn equipment.....
http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/AAAEquipmentphotos-04.jpg (http://s260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/?action=view&current=AAAEquipmentphotos-04.jpg)
http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/AAAEquipmentphotos-10.jpg (http://s260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/?action=view&current=AAAEquipmentphotos-10.jpg)
http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/AAAEquipmentphotos-18.jpg (http://s260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/?action=view&current=AAAEquipmentphotos-18.jpg)
DIRTY DIRTY MOWER......
http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/AAAEquipmentphotos-09.jpg (http://s260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/?action=view&current=AAAEquipmentphotos-09.jpg)

Here's the trailer empty (or least as empty as I get it to haul the bands gear)
http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/AAAEquipmentphotos-19.jpg (http://s260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/?action=view&current=AAAEquipmentphotos-19.jpg)
Here's the band, gear & trailer photos.... (please pardon my shirt!
http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/IM000706.jpg (http://s260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/?action=view&current=IM000706.jpg)
http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/IM000710.jpg (http://s260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/?action=view&current=IM000710.jpg)
http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/IM000708.jpg (http://s260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/?action=view&current=IM000708.jpg)
http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/IM000716.jpg (http://s260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/?action=view&current=IM000716.jpg)
http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/IM000702.jpg (http://s260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/?action=view&current=IM000702.jpg)
http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/IM000703.jpg (http://s260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/?action=view&current=IM000703.jpg)
http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/IM000699.jpg (http://s260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/AAA%20Quality/?action=view&current=IM000699.jpg)

Here's me & the band JACK SOMEBODY in action:
http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/Bandphoto.gif (http://s260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/?action=view&current=Bandphoto.gif)
http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/Chuckbw.jpg (http://s260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/?action=view&current=Chuckbw.jpg)
http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/Battleofthebands-11.jpg (http://s260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/?action=view&current=Battleofthebands-11.jpg)
http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/Battleofthebands-12.jpg (http://s260.photobucket.com/albums/ii25/jacksomebody/?action=view&current=Battleofthebands-12.jpg) http://www.gophergraphics.com/forum/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif

Steve
02-24-2008, 02:35 PM
I love the pics! I think they are great! You look like you are really having a lot of fun with it all!

I was thinking about more co-branding ideas.

Here are some for you.

Could you come up with a song that was about remembering the environment and say for instance to not use certain types of fertilizers? Could this be something you could mix in with lawn care mowing footage and then include your town name in it. Like "Let's keep YOURTOWN safe." Then maybe present it to the township as your way of trying to help improve the town. Maybe your song is about getting kids to volunteer to help pick up trash. Then you could include a chorus part in the song where a bunch of kids are all signing along "let's all pitch in." Or something like that. Then you could send the video to the local press and maybe you are called upon to play your song at times live at different township events.

Is it over the top? Yes, but this is the kind of thing that could reach out to a wide group of your potential customers.

What's your view on something like this?

musician/lawnman
02-24-2008, 03:57 PM
Not a bad idea, Over the top...yes. I'd probably be a little cheesy or difficult to make it un-cheesy but it could work, I'll letcha know what I come up with.

Steve
02-26-2008, 04:49 PM
LOL I know it's cheesy but cheesy reaches out to a broad spectrum and that's your lawn care customer base.

When you think about all the lawn care business owners you know or all of the lawn care businesses you have seen, what marketing that they have done ever stood out to you?

What has been wild, different or outrageous ?

How can you take all of your talents skills and everything that makes you so unique and make your lawn care business as unique?