Common commercial lawn care marketing mistakes.

There are plenty of ways to market to commercial lawn care properties but many of them are a waste of time. Time is money and when you are spending time & money marketing, you want to make sure you are getting the greatest return for your efforts. Here is a great example from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum on how not to do things followed by suggestions on how to improve.

One lawn care business wrote us about his troubles landing new commercial lawn care accounts and said “I just got home from handing out my lawn care business cards and I feel like It was a total waste of time & cards.

Here is what I did and maybe someone can help me figure out what I am doing wrong. I walked into a few strip malls and plazas & asked to speak to the owner. Then I told the owner to have their land lord contact me as I handed them a business card.

After all that time and energy spent trying to make connections I only got a single call back. It was from the owner of a local commercial complex. Over the phone I agreed to a meeting with him. After that, I discontinued my efforts marketing to other buildings in the area and immediately went to the complex.

As I sit down, the first thing this idiot tells me is, ‘just to be fair, a contract is already signed for this year….’ As soon as I heard that, I immediately left my card & stormed back home. What is the point of him wasting my time if he isn’t going to hire me?

This process just doesn’t feel right to me. Any suggestions on how to go about getting commercial lawn care accounts? Who should I be talking to? How should I get into contact with them?

Once I figure this out I would rather mow commercial properties than residential ones.¬† I figure that is where the money is.”

One lawn care business owner responded and said “right off the bat, there are a couple of things I would like to point out about your marketing efforts. First off, you can’t expect to hand out business cards the way you did and get the landlords to call you back. The fact that you got 1 return call is amazing actually.

You would improve your results quite a bit if you found the property owner yourself and marketed to them directly. Secondly, when you get a chance to meet with a property owner, don’t be so quick to cut and run from the meeting. Listen to what he has to say. Pick his brain. Find out what he likes and dislikes about the lawn care maintenance he is currently getting and then present your own bid for the property. Point out how you will improve on what he wants and take care of the issues he dislikes about his current maintenance. Ask him if he has any other properties he needs a bid on or if he knows any other property owners in the area he could refer you to. There is gold in these meeting that is there for you if you are willing to mine it by asking the right questions.

When I first got started marketing to commercial lawn care customers, I found that I couldn’t even get a response from any commercial property owners until I started carrying my certificate of insurance with me. Once I got that, I was at least able to take the next step to giving a presentation of my lawn care bid.

After you get your first commercial account, it’s important to use it as a stepping stone to get more. My first commercial lawn care account was a small medical professional complex. The job included mowing, weeding and prunning a small lawn which was about 12′ deep around the building weekly and consisted of a total of 3,000 sq ft. I made sure to make the lawn look fantastic and got pictures of it for my marketing material and website.

The property size was perfect for me because it was inline with what I was used to mowing for my residential customers. My bid price was very accurate as far as price and length of time I thought it would take. I didn’t feel like I was jumping into a property that was beyond my scope of competency. If the property were any larger, I easily could have underbid it and ultimately lost money on the job.

Now, when I want to market to larger commercial properties in my area, I use my county property appraiser’s web site and it will tell me who owns the building or property. Once I look it up I can then research how I can contact the owner.

When you are first getting started though, you may find more success by sticking with mom and pop single free standing buildings. They usually have some grass to cut, trees to prune and maybe mulching along with flowers. They are smaller in size but easy to do and manageable. You will most likely bid them and profit comparably with your residential lawn care accounts. Later as you grow, you can always scale the size up.”

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Lawn Care Business Books And Software.
How To Get Lawn Care Customers Vol. 2
The landscaping and lawn care business plan startup guide
A rebellious teenagers guide to starting a landscaping & lawn care business
The GopherHaul Lawn Care Business Show Episode Guide.
Stop Lowballing! A Lawn Care Business Owner\'s Guide To Success