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Introduce Yourself Welcome all new forum members. Please introduce yourself and tell us about you. Tell us about your company. How did you get started? How long have you been in business? What do you do for fun? Don't be shy, say hello! It's fun and educational to interact on the forum!

Hello from Southwest Florida


Introduce Yourself

Welcome all new forum members. Please introduce yourself and tell us about you. Tell us about your company. How did you get started? How long have you been in business? What do you do for fun? Don't be shy, say hello! It's fun and educational to interact on the forum!
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  #1  
Old 11-19-2009, 07:18 PM
dhawk dhawk is offline
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Default Hello from Southwest Florida

Hi everybody,

New here and just found the site while surfing.

I'm new in this business.
This is the second business I have had.

My first business was embroidery, graphics, and screenprint.
I finally gave up on it due to lack of time (was still working full time for a large corporate company), low profit margins, and high overhead.

I bought a small existing LC biz with a few accounts, and have just been building from there.

Unplanned, this ended up being my families sole source of income.
errr..... that was a little stressful since I only started with ten accounts.

I have to say, I am much happier being out of Corporate America.

My friends thought I had lost my mind when I told them I was going to do lawn care. Four months later, all they can say is how much more content I seem.
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  #2  
Old 11-19-2009, 08:30 PM
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Lawn care business tipsLawn Care Business Book
Welcome to our forum!

What first got you interested in starting an embroidery business? What did you like and dislike about it?
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Old 11-19-2009, 09:44 PM
dhawk dhawk is offline
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I got started because my wife wanted a small home embroidery machine.

Next thing I know, I am digitizing (creating graphic designs and then putting them into something similar to cad design that the embroidery machine can read).

Then I start a forum about embroidery, get about 5K members wanting designs, and the next thing I know, I am sitting in a brick and mortar shop with a commercial embroidery machine, a screen print press, digital garment press, conveyors, etc.

Likes:
Embroidery is interesting - taking someones logo, turning it into a stitched hat or shirt is simply cool to see and do
- If you like computers/graphic art, you get to do a LOT of it for embroidery/screenprint
- Customers are usually good/loyal customers - once they see your work, or you create their design, they are not going anywhere (if you did a good job - sound familiar in another type of business?)
- No dirt and weed/grass clippings everywhere you look and on everything you own


Dislikes:
- Lots of competition doing work for practically free in my area
- High overhead - shop rent, 30K embroidery machine, expensive software, high electricity consumption because of all the electric heaters, conveyors, product cost (shirts, pants, football uniforms, etc), 25K screenprint and garment printers, etc..and on and on and on and on
- VERY strict deadlnes and high pressure - just imagine - sometimes you would get a call on Friday - I need 24 Jerseys done by tomorrow

I prefer lawn care now that I am actually able to focus on it full time. What a difference when you are not juggling a "day" job.
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  #4  
Old 11-20-2009, 05:53 AM
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welcome to the forum, I am also Florida, Where in the southwest are you from.
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Old 11-20-2009, 07:27 AM
dhawk dhawk is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fldodger View Post
welcome to the forum, I am also Florida, Where in the southwest are you from.
Thanks for the greeting.
I am in Cape Coral.
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  #6  
Old 11-20-2009, 09:17 AM
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East coast west coast!!! Florida!

I am here in Cocoa Beach.

Welcome to the Forum!

I need embroidery work. Do you have a web site?

Thanks!
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Old 11-20-2009, 12:52 PM
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Quote:
Lots of competition doing work for practically free in my area
Isn't this fascinating!? For all the new members who think there is only heavy competition in lawn care, there probably was just as much in the embroidery field.

What was your view on how to compete with other embroidery businesses (potentially run out of a garage with little overhead)? How did you feel was the best way to beat them?

Getting into lawn care now, can you carry those skills your learned and that strategy with you?
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  #8  
Old 11-20-2009, 04:50 PM
dhawk dhawk is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arthur712 View Post
East coast west coast!!! Florida!

I am here in Cocoa Beach.

Welcome to the Forum!

I need embroidery work. Do you have a web site?

Thanks!
I don't do embroidery anymore. (sorry)
I closed that shop and went to lawn care.
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  #9  
Old 11-20-2009, 05:20 PM
dhawk dhawk is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve View Post
Isn't this fascinating!? For all the new members who think there is only heavy competition in lawn care, there probably was just as much in the embroidery field.

What was your view on how to compete with other embroidery businesses (potentially run out of a garage with little overhead)? How did you feel was the best way to beat them?

Getting into lawn care now, can you carry those skills your learned and that strategy with you?
In my area, there is just as much competition in lawn care as there was with embroidery. Heck, you see an LCO rig at every stop light here in Cape Coral.

What does amaze me is how fast this business can grow - way, way, way, much easier than embroidery (IMOHO). The relativley low overhead with this business compared to the embroidery is just topping on the cake.

I used to cringe when I got a large embroidery order - 1000 polo shirts might set you back 4 or 5K - each time you get the order. I don't cringe when I get a lawn account.

There was no real difference in the two businesses as far as my strategy to deal with heavy competition - keep prices fair, do great work, network, network, network. Have a web presence, of course. SEO optomizing to get good search results for your key words.

I have teamed up with a lawn and shrub treatment guy that has more horticulture knowledge than myself. I consult with him on any new lawns I acquire. He tells me issues that I might miss - lawn being overwatered, fungus, etc. I follow his advice and strive to make my lawns the best on on the block.

I give him business by getting him the fert and insecticide contract, and now he is starting to return the favor by sending me accounts.

As far as carrying experience from the first business - yes - I learned a lot of what NOT to do.

I also leaned a lot of things to do which I try to apply to this business.

It was easier going to this biz because I already had gone through a start up, so I knew what to expect somewhat.

I already knew how to go about licensing and insurance, creating my website, and the other things you need for start up.

I also knew to start with a few customers - that was WAY important, because it leads to other things.
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Old 11-21-2009, 09:44 AM
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Quote:
As far as carrying experience from the first business - yes - I learned a lot of what NOT to do.
Sometimes knowing what NOT to do can be more important than knowing what to do.

Can you share with us a few of your thoughts that new business owners should not do?
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