Getting lawn care customers and snow plow customers can be frustrating early on. It might seem that every potential customer you reach out to says no right away. But don’t let that stop you. It’s all a numbers game. The more you talk to, the more you can sell too and things get easier as you go. Let’s check out this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum and see the difficulties one snow plow business owner had with attracting new customers.
He wrote “I just went out snowplowing my customer’s driveways and then decided I would distribute some flyers close to where I had some customers already. I got yelled at by 2 people for waking them up at 9:00 am, and lots of others said no.
Anyway, I’m not giving up. I’m going to go around later in my neighborhood and see if people want their driveways plowed. I did give out some business cards to the people that said no. The ones that yelled at me didn’t get one because they shut their doors in my face. At first I was angry, but then I started to think about it. Would I want to be woken up at 9 am by a knock at the door? Well, no one wants to be woken up, but I figured everyone was up by then. Lesson learned: Wait until about noon, then knock on doors. Sorry people. I did apologize to them though. I figured people would be up for church, it is Sunday.
Am I doing something wrong? Lots of people are saying no. I’m offering to clear their driveway, shovel the walkway, and put down salt for $40.00. One lady told me it was too much. I politely thanked her and left. Most of the businesses around here will only plow your driveway for that price.
I have already made some flyers that I’m going to post up at the corner store in my area. I have 15 of them. If people take them, I’m going to put more there, and at a few other stores. I also found the president of a development that I have a customer in. I’m going to call him and ask if he would let me advertise my business on the homeowner’s association website. I looked and saw that they don’t have much on their site.
I would LOVE to do the ice melt bucket marketing idea, where you put your business name and number on a bunch of buckets with ice melt and leave them at the doors of homes in the area, but I don’t have money to buy all the buckets and ice melt, and stickers and stuff. I will do that in due time. Maybe next year. I do have a few magnets left from last year. But my business cards don’t say that I offer snow removal on the business cards. That’s why I made the flyers. My company didn’t start offering snow removal until just this season.”
A second lawn care business owner said “Screw those people, the homeowners who you did plow for, where they happy? That’s all that matters.
Going door to door on Sunday is a little tricky. If I was to step foot near any of my customers on a Sunday at that time, I would be afraid they might shoot me. So maybe next time, try going door to door later or have some big signs on your truck so neighbors can read it and call you as you are out plowing.
Where I live I have had the same issue as you but you know what, I figure it’s after day break. It’s not sleepy time. They need to get up and stop being lazy. Anyway I recently went door to door after plowing and was only able to set up 5 more clients for snow removal. My best bet snow plow marketing so far is sticking with my existing lawn clients from last summer and upselling them or getting referrals from them and my craigslist ads that I update daily. 5 jobs is better than no jobs right? It’s all a numbers game. The more you contact, the more potential sales you will get.”
A third snow plow business owner added “don’t get discouraged, you are doing well so far. Just realize that if you are trying to work in an area that has a lot of retirees, 9AM can be like 6 AM. If you get mostly retirees answering the door, waiting till later in the day might be a good idea. They may be grumpy early, but they might warm up considerably when it’s later in the day and you have a service they want. You could also experiment with some direct mail marketing with a full color snow plow postcard. With this as with any other form of marketing, it’s better to hit a smaller group multiple times than it is to hit a large group once.
Also, keep those who say no in mind for a flyer campaign later during spring and summer lawn care.”
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