I had a great conversation with Jeff, a lawn care business owner, at the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum. You can join in on the conversation as well by clicking that link. He shared with us his insight on how he has been able to grow and what he uses to push himself to get more flyers out and meet more potential lawn care business customers.
Jeff: “I got 55 lawn care customers within 6 months of opening my lawn service full time last year and just finished a record cash season this Summer. Sometimes my lawn care customer total swells to 65, and last winter it dropped to 35, but it currantly is about 55+.
In advertising, I use lawn care business flyers door to door, getting out as many as 800+ in one day. In this area, you get about 2 calls every 300 flyers. I pass out thousands of flyers. Then I also get referrals, that’s probably 1 out of 5 customers. I also advertise in a local paper called “the flyer”- a recent 4 week ad in this paper produced maybe 14 calls, and resulted in a few new customers, one of which was a much needed monthly contract. So these three methods, flyers, referrals, and an ad in a popular local paper are how I get the customers.
But an insider tip I learned from the TV show “The Apprentice” I would have to credit also. I watch any TV show that I could learn something about business from, so I watch The Apprentice and I noticed it was usually the team that pushed it, that won. So I adopted this in my efforts when passing out lawn care flyers, and time and time again I have seen it work. That I will be out passing out lawn care flyers and feel like ending the effort (after all I’m the boss, I can quit when I want-right?) but I would pretend I was on The Apprentice and push onward distributing far more lawn care flyers so I could stay out of the boardroom, so to speak, and sure enough, I would get calls usually from the additional lawn care flyers I distributed. So this insight is key to building up a big list soon- push it!!!! Just pretend you’ll have to stand in front of Donald trump if your team loses, and that you maybe fired, then really push it.
This insight has gotten me probably 30% of all my lawn care customers. ”
Steve: “Do you do anything to promote referrals? Do you have any suggestions on how to get them?”
Jeff: “To answer the referral question, I do stuff like give a customer a thank you card, thanking them for their continual business, and I’ll include a business card asking them to refer anyone they know to me, to give them the extra business card. But I find most referrals come naturally from the customers voluntarily, because they like the good work you do for them and want to share your service.”
Shane: “You are smart to hand out your lawn care business flyers yourself. At my previous lawn care job, my boss’s major problem was he let the lawn care employees distribute flyers unsupervised. I’m pretty sure they were playing x box and trashing the flyers. If you distribute lawn care flyers, always make sure that you are present to supervise or help flyer yourself. You are the only one that ensures that the lawn care business flyers get on the doors.
Also make sure you are answering your phone. Why have a marketing plan if you are never going to answer your phone, return phone calls or check your voicemail? Now when I give a bid or give out a business card I always tell the customer to call me and write my cell phone number on the back, so they feel special.”