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Nikon
12-05-2008, 07:02 PM
I am still alive, doing well, 25 good customers now and still working at the rental store, but I did do one upgrade this winter and I went from the 2000 S10 4CYL none 4x4, to a 2008 F250 SD Supercab FX4 V10. =) Next year I will have the truck for every application needed, I don't have a plow yet I do plan on getting a salter, and just get by using my snowblower for now.

I just don't have the 3200.00 for the plow at the moment. The truck alone was 23995.00 USED, traded in my s10 got the F250 for only 20K ,Financed it, but its so worth it.

Still managed to get in 12.5K part time this year between mowing and cleanups.

This is my New Truck
http://wowway.com/~nikon/photos/f250.jpg

Okay this is the Old S10

http://wowway.com/~nikon/photos/truckf.jpg

Steve
12-05-2008, 07:32 PM
Tony,

Welcome back. We missed you.

Can you tell us a bit about why you decided to make the jump from your original truck to the new one?

Nikon
12-05-2008, 07:43 PM
The reason why I got the new truck was because last year when I had to get where I needed to be for snow removal, with my snowblower, we had serveral of inches past 4 or 6 and I had a hell of a time getting where I needed to be.

Towing capacity, I was limited what I can haul and put in the back of the old S10, even though it had a 4CYL engine the damn thing still sucked gas. I needed more room.

If I decide to plow next year I have a truck that can do it with no problem.
If I decide to get a 7x14 tandem axle trailer I can haul it.
I bought the truck to better my business and grow to the next level.

I hope that explains your answer.

Steve
12-05-2008, 08:22 PM
Are you hauling a trailer now at all?

Nikon
12-05-2008, 09:12 PM
not at the moment, but during the season I was able to use a 6x10 lawn mower trailer from my regular job, from the rental store.

Steve
12-05-2008, 09:13 PM
You got me thinking about something. With all of your knowledge running the rental center, would you ever like to run your own? What do you like or dislike about that industry?

Nikon
12-05-2008, 09:22 PM
I would rather be in the lawn business then the rental business, to much and many things to worry about, insurance theft people not taking care of the equipment, property taxes on all of the equipment and so forth, and the state here charges you a usage tax same as sales tax, 6% so you get really screwed.


You can make money but its a headache and a lot of the equipment that people would rent is a high dollar, and start out your dropping millions on loans.

Steve
12-05-2008, 09:29 PM
Very interesting!

Speaking of equipment, you mentioned a snow plow, is there anything else on your wish list for next year?

Also what marketing did you find worked best this past year?

Nikon
12-05-2008, 09:53 PM
My wish list for next year is to double what I did this year in business.

As other things that is on it, was thinking of a 48" or 52" zero turn mower, probably go with a scag or another yazookees, but that depends if I get the 5 acre church next year.

I have purchased some new items this year, SH85 Blower/Vacume with Gutter Kit. HS81T 24" Hedge trimmer and MS192T 14" chainsaw.

As far as advertising goes I used some magnets from AMW signs this year, for a bit till I lost one, never replaced, I figured I would rather do word of mouth then burn on other costs, cause I am still doing both working at 9 mile rent all and lawn business. I did make business cards so that I can give them to my clients to give out to there friends or family for business.

Steve
12-05-2008, 10:44 PM
As far as advertising goes I used some magnets from AMW signs this year, for a bit till I lost one, never replaced, I figured I would rather do word of mouth then burn on other costs, cause I am still doing both working at 9 mile rent all and lawn business. I did make business cards so that I can give them to my clients to give out to there friends or family for business.

What kinds of marketing are you looking forwards to doing next year?

Nikon
12-06-2008, 09:22 AM
Next year I am going to advertise on service magic and craigslist for local lawn mowing and so forth.

Steve
12-06-2008, 04:27 PM
Next year I am going to advertise on service magic and craigslist for local lawn mowing and so forth.

That will be very interesting to see what happens! Do you ever get a chance to talk to other lawn care business owners who come to the rental center to rent machinery and ask them what marketing they do which they have liked? Also can you give your own business cards out to other businesses that come in if they ever need a lawn care operator? It could potentially help.

Nikon
12-07-2008, 07:26 PM
Yeah I do talk to them i haven't asked them for advertisement ideas because gopher haul is full of everything.


But I do give out cards to other lawn guys and it really don't help much, most of my work is word of mouth and from 1 client i went from having 1 to 3 to 5 ect. ect.

Little's
12-07-2008, 08:48 PM
Hey Nikon,
Like the truck. That was a good find.

I also use the Stihl MS192T. I used one for a year, then traded it for some work a guy did for me, and missed it so much that I went and bought another one (actually the MS192TC) Same, just easier pull. I took off the 14" bar and put on a 12". It makes it much easier to operate while climbing and for one handed cuts when your hanging on for dear life! haha But I found it makes the balance MUCH better and when your making one handed cuts all day, the balance is a big factor.

Anyway, nice truck!

Nikon
01-03-2009, 11:43 AM
Well I finally got off my lazy *** and decided to create http://www.artanoutdoormaintenance.com/ I made it simple and easy for loading even if people was searching on there phones/pda phones on lunch who knows how bored the corporate world can be on lunch, but its basicly shows the services what i can do for now, I would like to add photos of jobs that I have done in a portfolio. Hope it helps me take off faster, I am tired of not taking risk and growing my business.

Steve
01-03-2009, 01:47 PM
Nice job Tony! I love your logo too!

What's next on your list now for promoting your business?

Nikon
01-04-2009, 08:10 PM
As soon as the weather breaks here in Michigan, March or April, I will be adding myself to the yellow pages and local searches for 99.99 a year to conduct more business I even may add myself in search engines such as yahoo.com / google.com I think those are the most used web search engines.

I still lack a trailer and still searching, more then likely I will get a 7x14 Enclosed trailer now that I have this F250, and possibly a zero-turn mower depending on the properties that I can get.

Steve
01-05-2009, 11:17 AM
Tony,

You should consider putting your business website in your forum signature so that the search engines will find it that way too.

Keep us posted on what kind of trailer you get!!

Nikon
01-05-2009, 10:05 PM
yeah check it out perhaps it might help you!


http://www.merchantcircle.com/corporate/

Steve
01-06-2009, 10:40 PM
Is that the link to your site or to your web host?