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One hit wonder or try try try?


General Business Discussions

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Old 07-27-2005, 09:05 AM
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Some business owners feel you need to hit on something right away and if you dont, you are a failure. Others feel you have to try many things, you may fail at many, but some you will succeed with.

Which is your view?

What are some things you have tried and failed at?
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Old 08-03-2005, 11:00 AM
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Here is a quote from our friend Windmill

Quote:
Originally Posted by [b
Quote[/b] ]As far as new customers are concerned I get 90% through word of mouth. Those are by far the best customers as they generally stay with me.

If you are reffering to business expansion, for me it is try. Although I am pretty much as busy as I want to be with my one employee (sometimes four), I am always looking for a new aspect of business that might work.
My business is primarily back yard tree spraying and weed control. I have been thinking that next year I might venture into vacation mowing. Grasshopper (my son) mows lawns and gets the odd call for vacation mows, because his schedule is generally full he can't always do them. I'm thinking this will be the same for most of the companies in town, so I will be adding a vacation mow bullet to my "yellow page" ads.
Now I can hear you already, what if you get one mow and it is way out of the way. My thoughts are:

1. a mow that might regularly be charged at $25.00 will be a min of $35.00
2. If the mow is out of any of the routes we normally do it will be higher.
3. I will probably want cash in advance.
4. The lawn must have been cut the week previous or the cost will be higher.
5. Perhaps splitting the profit 60/40 with my employee and paying this money out as a bonus at the end of our spraying season.

As this is only a developing thought I will probably think of more things as time goes by.
If people want to go on vacation they will have to pay that extra $$$ for that select service.
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Old 08-11-2005, 01:23 PM
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I am definitely of the try, try and try view. *

In my business, over the course of 10 years, there were lots of things that worked and some that did not work, but overall the business was successful and we learned from our mistakes.

For example, when we decided to expand our aeration operation we bought a Ryan LA28 which was a sizable investment for us. We restructured the company and re-designed a lot of our marketing. However, it paid off in that we used the LA28 to sell a superior aeration job and we were able to do them more efficiently. It was a great success.

We took this one step further when we invested in a marketing campaign to sell our aeration services to other lawn maintenance companies with the idea of sub-contracting to them. This failed dismally as we found, at least in our area, that LCOs want to do their own aeration.

You definitely have to keep trying new things all the time. Watch for new technology, improved equipment and the industry as a whole and look for new opportunities. Not to say that you should throw caution to the wind and buy everything that comes along. Of course you must do your research, count the cost and plan how you intend to make it successful. If it is not as successful as you had hoped or if it fails all together then at least you walk away wiser. Chalk it up as a learning experience.
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