There are certain times throughout the year when it seems easier to attract new lawn care clients. The peak times tend to be mid spring into early summer. The slowest times seem to be late fall into winter. If you happen to find yourself starting a lawn care business during a slow time of the year, you will want to read these tips from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum to give yourself as much of an advantage as possible.
One new lawn care business owner wrote “I have always loved yard work and due to my recent layoff, I decided to dedicate myself wholeheartedly to starting my lawn care business. Due to the fact we are now late in the lawn mowing season, I am looking for some advice on how to get the ball rolling and get some customers when coming in late to the game.”
A second lawn care business owner shared “getting your lawn care business started late in the season can be rough! Over the years, I have seen the end of the season bring many people like you, who have been laid off or fear being laid off, try looking to get their business off the ground only to fail.
Anyone with a lawn mower can and will try to do the same thing you are doing. You have to stand above the crowd. To do this, I put together some quick tips.
First and foremost, be professional. You are not just a business owner 9 to 5, you have to be one 24/7. Your appearance, language and demeanor will be noticed and remembered. I’m not saying you need to wear a suit and tie, but you need to look and act professional. You are now entering the service industry and you need to dress appropriately. Don’t do anything off the job you wouldn’t do in front of your customers on the job. You never know who’s watching!
Second, know your environment. What is the most common turfs in your locale. Know what the optimum growing conditions are for these turfs (pH, fertilizer needs, nutrient and micro-nutrient needs, insect infestation and lawn diseases, etc.). Proper mowing height and irrigation needs. In other words educate yourself so you can educate and respond to your lawn care customers.
Third, know the environmental concerns and regulations of your area. Many areas of the country now have restrictions on chemical and synthetic lawn care products such as fertilizer, pesticides and herbicides. These affect not only the environment, but the health of people (especially children) and pets. If there is no restrictions where you live now, there probably will be soon! Educate yourself about organic lawn care and consider offering those services.
Forth, get your name out there. There are many forms of advertising that can be expensive so make the most of what is available. I have tried flyers, hand-outs, direct mail, even radio. My best results have been ads in the local newspaper, lawn signs and referral bonuses. I offer gift cards to Lowe’s and WalMart with values of $10 to $100 to my customers who refer me new customers. Word of mouth is the best advertising.
Fifth, with more and more people doing it themselves, strive to offer services that compliment their efforts. Aeration, lawn supplements (lime, sulfur, iron, etc.) dethatching, over seeding, lawn leveling, top dressing, hedge and tree trimming and many other services.
Sixth utilize these lawn care business calculators to accurately bid your lawn care jobs.
Taking these steps will help you easily get a jump on local competitors who don’t take their business seriously and prepare a platform for your business to continue to grow over time.”