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My dilemma

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  • My dilemma

    I'm starting to get a game plan together for next years advertising. I'm stuck on 1 thing. I'm stuck on either doing USPS direct mail or handing out flyers. The flyers will obviously be a lot cheaper, but has anyone done both? I'm not looking for opinions, I'm looking for people who have done both and which one they prefer. I'm not sure if its worth it to spend the extra cash for a potential big risk. (I'm looking at spending a few thousand)

  • #2
    Save your money

    I'm pretty sure no matter what we do, advertising will always be disappointing.

    You should consider putting an ad in the paper, and stick with handing out flyers in your local area.

    At least when you hand out flyers, you can avoid the crappy lawns

    You'll save money, and surely you will have time to spare before the season begins. I'm always debating spending money so I don't have to walk around, but then I slap myself and say "NO! You're going to walk, and you're going to like it!"

    There are pros to doing it yourself...

    1. It gets you in shape, warmed up for the season.

    2. You get a good idea of where streets are, I know my entire city like the back of my hand. Lot's of scars my the back of my hand...

    3. You can usually speak to homeowners, and try to sell them on hiring you.

    4. It'll help you sleep at night, a day of walking around like a moron is exhausting.

    5. You'll get a sexy tan before anyone else, and they'll say "wow, take me now, right on this table".


    • #3
      With a decent flyer design (full color glossy pages) $0.35ea I got anywhere from 6 calls per hundred to 0 per hundred. it's hit or miss between different neighborhoods.
      try and make it as classy as possible and go for the richest areas first and try 50-100 flyers in different areas. go back to the places that you found worthwhile interest in your business.
      Good costumers should be given 5 or so extra flyers and tell em to tell their friends! there are NEVER enough grass guys in the spring.


      • #4
        I think this is also a question of which do you have more of, time or money?

        Which would you rather leverage?

        If you have more time than money, use your time and go out to hand distribute them. If you have more money than time, use the mail service to deliver them.

        As we see companies get bigger, they tend to leverage their money more and utilize direct mail marketing campaigns.

        Another thing to consider is, you are probably going to have to repeat this process around three times to see some positive results. Would you rather repeat it going door to door or having the mail service do it?
        - Subscribe to my Lawn Care Marketing Blog Feed and get daily tips sent to you. Free!
        Download your Free trial of Gopher Lawn Care Software.


        • #5
          All good points! One thing I would never do is skimp on the quality of the flyers. I prefer to use postcards, because they have a much better finish, and can be stuck in the door easier.

          I know exactly what you mean, Cheese, about picking the customers. I've done this before and helps me avoid going insane!!!

          I've read before that the newest way to market is by direct mailers. They say the ROI is bigger than flyers or postcards. BUT, everyday when I get home, I take the envelopes out of the stack of mail, and toss the rest in the trash. Would potential customers do the same? Of course they would. But spending 5K on direct mailers only to be tossed in the trash, now that wouldn't be good.

          Maybe next year I'll try both to see which one did better. Either way, it wouldn't hurt to try.


          • #6
            Lawn Boy- You and I both!!!! Look only long enough to see if its a bill, a check, or a letter to me and everything goes in the trash. Especially now with all the juck political advertising. I know that I have probibly thrown something away that I shuould have read in the last year but oh well. I absolutly HATE junk mail and will not join the craze. I have real nice postcards that I had made up, and put in the doors jambs. However the best advertising I have is the same ad in the local penny saver. Every house gets one, lots of people read them. With the same 9 word ad every week I have built from 0 to 45 customers in one year, and yes there have been more but I dont count the one I quit because they dont pay, or they keep wanting more and more with no more money. I also dont count the ones that look at and walk away from.


            • #7
              penny saver huh? I have to try that!!! I was looking into my local newspaper, but they want waaaaaay too much for it. I can't remember the price, she told me and I just hung up. I'll have to look into penny saver! Thanks for the tip!


              • #8
                penny saver huh? I have to try that!!! I was looking into my local newspaper, but they want waaaaaay too much for it. I can't remember the price, she told me and I just hung up. I'll have to look into penny saver! Thanks for the tip!
                Yeah here the local newspaper is printed once per week and they wanted like 25 bucks a week, they are like 20 thousand distributed, the penny saver goes to every house and business, like 150K. Now people who usethat to hire are looking for cheap, not unreasonable, but very frugal. However I have gotten 5 commercial contracts,1K per month, and about 30 residential contracts worth about 75 per week ea.

                The good part is I use it every week. Use you ad at least 6 times according to the 'experts'.


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