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-   -   A question for more experienced lawn services. (http://www.gopherforum.com/showthread.php?t=5972)

Clean Lawn 07-19-2007 07:00 PM

Greetings everyone. I am Rhonda Solomon and I am one of the newer lawn services and landscaping companies to the Hampton Roads area. One gentleman from a more experienced lawn service company was very kind to me as I am just starting out and sent me a copy of 'Start & Run a Landscape Business' by Joel LaRusic. This book has been incredible. I am finding so many wonderful and exciting things about the industry I didn't know and also some really really really great ideas! I am a creative person in the sense that if I can make it, then I do and this shows in things around my home for Christmas (for example). I have created X-Mas wreaths for friends and families, christmas cards, hand crochetted snow flakes that are hung on my x-mas tree and windows but needless to say...I started creating some business "thank you cards" for all my new customers for CleanLawn. I will take some pictures and have my husband show me how to post them so I can get everyones opinions on them. Anyhow again off subject and getting back to it, I saw the Newsletter section of the book. Well I wanted to know how many professional lawn services actually have created their own Newslletter for their clients and if they have can you give me ideas on things you have put into the Newsletters.
Some of the other things I have considered for my business I would like to gain the opinions of experienced professionals on these ideas also please.
Referal service- I give new and existing customers 5 business cards at a time with their names hand written on the back (my handwritting is very unique so I know when its mine) and for each card that is returned to me that someone signs up for a service I give that customer a $5.00 credit. I don't limit to the amount of service that can be refered to us but obviously the same person should not keep coming back every week with a business card from the same customer.
I give a 10% discount on all accounts paid in full before the next month of service begins (up till the 5th day of the month).
I want to encourage my clients to continue to refer people to CleanLawn and am looking for more ways but running a little dry on the ideas.
I am considering offering a senior citizen discount and was curious if any other business' offered this and if they did how much of a discount they gave?
Hampton Roads is a enormous military area and I considered giving a 10% military discount but my husband says no because the military get discounts in this area all the time. Any thoughts on this one?
I am considering creating business signs that can be stuck into the ground in clients yards that might help the business gain more potential clients. I would of course give incentive for my clients to allow me to keep the sign in their yards for short periods of time and would in no way allow a tasteless sign to be created and put in my clients yards. Does anyone do this or have tried in it in the past?
This idea would not go into effect until next year because my business did not start until the middle of last month. I wanted to offer a CleanLawn lawn/garden of the year for my CleanLawn customers and give the winner a $100-$150.00 gift certificate to one of the local nurseries. Has anyone ever tried anything like this?
I am also open to other ideas if anyone can or wants to throw any out there in this posting section.
Lastly, back to the Newsletter. Something I have also considered for the Newsletter would be eventually to turn it into a newsletter (not just for my clients but for everyone) and offer advertising on it and start in a couple of neighborhoods with my clients and keep allowing it to grow to cover the greater hampton roads area in Virginia but perhaps it could have ads and interviews with different companies in this area that have something unique about them or something they do.
Anyhow I would love as much imput as possible and some suggestions if something you have thought about seems like a good idea or have tried that went over very well.
Thank you everyone in advance. I really appreciate everything. http://www.gophergraphics.com/forum/...s/thankyou.gif

Steve 07-19-2007 08:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by [b
Quote[/b] ]Greetings everyone. I am Rhonda Solomon and I am one of the newer lawn services and landscaping companies to the Hampton Roads area. One gentleman from a more experienced lawn service company was very kind to me as I am just starting out and sent me a copy of 'Start & Run a Landscape Business' by Joel LaRusic. This book has been incredible. I am finding so many wonderful and exciting things about the industry I didn't know and also some really really really great ideas!

Did you know we have a podcast interview with the author? Listening to it might give you more ideas.

Scroll down to see the podcast "Interview with lawn care business owner and author Joel LaRusic"
http://odeo.com/channel/412313/view/1

Quote:

Originally Posted by [b
Quote[/b] ]I am a creative person in the sense that if I can make it, then I do and this shows in things around my home for Christmas (for example). I have created X-Mas wreaths for friends and families, christmas cards, hand crochetted snow flakes that are hung on my x-mas tree and windows but needless to say...I started creating some business "thank you cards" for all my new customers for CleanLawn. I will take some pictures and have my husband show me how to post them so I can get everyones opinions on them.

I look forwards to seeing them. If you can't figure out how to post pictures, email them to us at support@gophersoftware.com and we will get them online for you.


Quote:

Originally Posted by [b
Quote[/b] ]Anyhow again off subject and getting back to it, I saw the Newsletter section of the book. Well I wanted to know how many professional lawn services actually have created their own Newslletter for their clients and if they have can you give me ideas on things you have put into the Newsletters.

Have you seen this free newsletter you can download? I think putting together a newsletter can be time intensive. I don't think too many new lawn care operations use them, but if you have the time to experiment, why not try it out? Come up with some seasonal ideas. Search the internet for other newsletter concepts and maybe that will help get you going.


Quote:

Originally Posted by [b
Quote[/b] ]Some of the other things I have considered for my business I would like to gain the opinions of experienced professionals on these ideas also please.
Referal service- I give new and existing customers 5 business cards at a time with their names hand written on the back (my handwritting is very unique so I know when its mine) and for each card that is returned to me that someone signs up for a service I give that customer a $5.00 credit. I don't limit to the amount of service that can be refered to us but obviously the same person should not keep coming back every week with a business card from the same customer.
I give a 10% discount on all accounts paid in full before the next month of service begins (up till the 5th day of the month).
I want to encourage my clients to continue to refer people to CleanLawn and am looking for more ways but running a little dry on the ideas.

Check out these posts, they may give you referal ideas.
http://www.gophergraphics.com/forum....;t=5061
http://www.gophergraphics.com/forum....;t=3526

Quote:

Originally Posted by [b
Quote[/b] ]I am considering offering a senior citizen discount and was curious if any other business' offered this and if they did how much of a discount they gave?
Hampton Roads is a enormous military area and I considered giving a 10% military discount but my husband says no because the military get discounts in this area all the time. Any thoughts on this one?

It could be a good way to get military members to sign up. Maybe try it out with a limited time coupon in a flyer?


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How to Estimate - Services To Offer:
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lawn care equipment:
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