Door to door tips for the lawn care business owner.

The thought of going door to door to sell your mowing services can strike fear into the hearts of many entrepreneurs. The vast majority of business owners cringe at the idea and simply won’t do it. Here though is a great story, from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, on how you can find success by simply being friendly and talking. There is work all around you to do, all you have to do is ask to do it.

One lawn care business owner wrote “when I turned 16, I got thrown right into service calls and door to door marketing for my family’s lawn care business. I didn’t like it much but my father was the type of good ol’ boy to bust my *** when I looked like I didn’t like it. So I learned to suck it up after a couple of meetings and it is really paying off now with my own company, just like he said it would! Here are some of the lessons I learned over the years.

When I go door to door to promote my business if the home owner is not interested in my services but they are interested in talking, I ask if they know their neighbors or if they know who owns such and such overgrown lots if there are any around the vicinity.

I also ask questions such as, if they own any rentals. Most of the time they don’t. But it helps to get to know potential customers and it gives me the chance to feel them out a little bit. It also gives me a moment to look and think about anything else I might be able to offer them.

All of this leads me to a story I have about a recent job tip.

A week ago, I received a tip from a prospect customer. She said ‘I do my own lawn and I love mowing it!’ I asked if there was anyone she could recommend me talking to that may need my services? She says, ‘yea talk to the lady 3 houses down, my son used to help her but he has since moved.’

I didn’t get to talk to the lady that day as I had already passed the house with no one answering and I was on my way around the block. But I made a quick note to revisit the property. The next house I visit, I asked the homeowner about his lawn care knowing fully that I wasn’t even interested in the yard. If I got it, fine, but he said he does his own yard.  I was really trying to get my foot in the door to take down a massive dead tree over his back entrance way! Well after a little bit of talking I get that tree job for $300 and it took me 30 minutes to limb it, throw the pole, and load it up in the trailer! As I am working on the property I smile and wave to the neighbors. My friendliness gets me the neighbors yard account and the guy 2 houses down!

The next day, I get back to the lady’s house that was recommended to me yesterday. I knock on the door and talk to her. She was a very upbeat woman of an older age. Finally I get a chance to talk to her after she was badgering me to find out if I’m cheaper than her other helper. She said if so, I would get the lawn. I simply said, ‘what would you feel comfortable paying me? I will tell you after that if I can do it or not.’

She said ‘pick up the limbs in the front and mow it. I’ll give you $30.’ I said ‘ok I can do that!’ She wanted me to do it the following day, so I showed up at 9 am like she asked. When I got there I let her know I was there. I started on the place. I pulled out my bedliner drug it around with the rope attached to it, got all the limbs up, filled it up full, moved to her drive, and mowed. I then line trimmed after that and was coming around the back with my bedliner to unload it on her burn pile. She stopped me and said ‘you’ve done a way better job than my other helper. I’m going to give you $35 dollars and I want you to come tomorrow and mow/weed eat the back yard. I’ll give you another $35 dollars, plus pay you for your gas. How much did you use?’

I said ‘I don’t know because I wasn’t full when I got here. She said ‘ok I’m giving you $10 for gas.’ Then she says ‘ if you can rake these leaves out of the flower bed at the end of my place I’ll give you $20 bucks!’ I am thinking 20 feet x 2 feet of 1-2 inches of leaves, sweet!

So all in all this property is a lot smaller than 1 acre. I get $80 for mowing it. It took me about 20 minutes to grab the limbs and about 10 minutes to mow it. That’s on the front yard with all the trees. The back is clean and treeless!

I felt like I made a great sale because I would have only told her $50 dollars to mow it all! Strange but awesome. So here now I have an $80 dollar bi-weekly mowing account, plus she said if I could fix the leg on her table, she will give me $10 more!  That will take me about 3 minutes with my finish nailer, and some glue.

So by talking to all these different people. Finding out how I could help them. Smiling and saying hello to neighbors while I worked. All of these things helped me add a bunch of customers in a very small area. I also was able to charge more for a job than I would have bid on when I turned the tables on a prospective customer and asked how much she would pay me to do the job.

These are simple steps you can take to improve your door to door sales. Try them out and see how your business grows.

Order the book “The Lawn Care Business Can Get Dirty, Ugly, And Mean.: Stories Of Survival And Success To Get You Through The Rough Times” today.

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Lawn Care Business Books And Software.
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The GopherHaul Lawn Care Business Show Episode Guide.
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