If you’re brand new to the lawn care and landscaping game, you may not know much about advertising quite yet. But know this before we get into this – it is the back bone to your entire operation.
Your mowers mean nothing, your trucks – nothing, your skid loaders – nothing. Because without advertising those are just hunks of metal and rubber sitting there not generating revenue for the business.
Offline Marketing – A Thing Of The Past?
Online marketing has totally changed how businesses interact and acquire their customers. With techniques such as retargeting/remarketing just to name a few, offline seems to have slipped away. But it is still very much viable – IF YOU KNOW AND UNDERSTAND YOUR NUMBERS!
Here’s the catch – a direct mailer or door hanger pertaining to landscaping services is about 75% contingent on whether or not the weather outside on the day it arrives is favorable for people thinking of anything outdoors. This means that if your direct mail campaign you just spend thousands on arrives the day before an unexpected late winter/early spring snow storm, the audience targeted will likely not see it, tuck it with other junk, or even throw it away because they are so frustrated and angry that they have to sit in traffic for 2 hours the next day thanks to that snow event.
Or how about pounding pavement (literally – you’ll be walking miles upon miles) on the first few early nice spring days of the year to hand out door hangers before your competition gets to those houses. Sounds like fun right? If your crews aren’t doing work already on the equipment they can be put to the task of this distribution.
Let Us Run The Numbers For Getting Lawn Care Customers
Direct Mail For Lawn Care and Landscaping Advertising
So let’s say we spend $1,500 on a direct mail postcard campaign and this gets our cards to 500 homes (including postage).
We get a 5% call rate which equals 50 new leads at $30 each. Most lawn care business owners would balk at this “cost” already…”I’m losing money on this!”
Let’s say we’re terrible at sales and can only close 3 of those leads on a $35 per cut lawn mowing contracts. 26 cuts in the season x $35 = $910 x 3 clients = $2,730. BOOM, a 1.82x return on ad spend (ROAS). So that’s not all profit but we paid for the entire campaign over the course of the year, keep in mind these numbers are if we’re terrible at converting people on our ad into leads, and then leads into clients.
If you present yourself as a professional and have you act together and know what these clients want – you’ll convert far more than 2 into paid clients out of 50 leads. Also keep in mind that you had to spend zero in labor except your time to get the campaign executed.
Door Hanger Advertising For Lawn Care and Landscaping
This is where the analytical minds will capitalize when it comes to calculating job costs because self run door hanger distribution will cost you labor hours, however if the numbers work – who cares?
Let’s say you invest into 1,000 door hangers and they cost $375 for 1,000 to be designed, printed and shipped. We’re at a price of $.38 a piece. And for your staff of 3 to get them distributed takes 2 full 10 hour days and they cost $150/day. $450 per day labor x 2 = $900. $900 + $375 = $1,275 for the campaign.
Being as door hangers don’t always get the best response rate compared to a postcard that’s right in the mail, let’s say the response rate is only 2.5% = 25 calls. We only convert 2 of those leads into $35 per cut mowing contracts. Each client valued at $910/season and then 1 $200 spring clean up service. Grand total of $2,020, a 1.58x ROAS.
This is the same approach you must use when it comes to your digital marketing campaigns as well. Of course you’re not going to be able to pay for the entire campaign with 1 $30 mowing service, do you think Coca Cola makes back their $3MM ad spend on one Super Bowl commercial? No! They’re focused on the long term game and you should be to.
One thing you must absolutely never, ever forget – the opportunity to grab more work and clients from the exposure these new clients get, your crew out distributing flyers gets, and the time the crew is on the road to service these new properties. That’s 1000s of eyes seeing your trucks/trailers and potential for new work to come in. Even if you run in the red for a few months with your advertising, if you’re aware of your numbers you are set up with powerful data. The only people who say advertising is expensive and doesn’t work are the losers who have been at it for 20 years and have never achieved the basic level of getting out of the field and allowing laborers to do the robotic like tasks.
What’s the overall decision? Weigh in on the comments below.
Also, here’s a great video breaking down some rough estimates on advertising lawn care and how to get lawn care customers fast.