Is Offline Advertising Totally Dead For Lawn and Landscape Businesses?

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!”

Fret not.

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.

Obscurity Will Kill Your Home Service Business

The Silent Killer of Businesses

When it comes to advertising any business online and off, if your business is not seen, it will simply die out if you don’t already have an established customer base. If you do have a customer base of satisfied clients, you may be “sitting good” financially and you’re probably at that self employed level and all your bills are paid giving you a little extra left over for fun and games. That all said, if you’re someone who wants to grow your business into something more than just a job and create a powerhouse of an outdoor services company that becomes a one stop shop for your clients and all their neighbors, advertising and marketing are a must in order to grow a scalable and sellable business.

The simplest way to describe how obscurity will wreck your business is with this simple question – how will prospective clients find you?

If someone’s looking for a landscaper, lawn care or snow removal provider, they are most likely going to look online. That’s not to say offline marketing is dead though – using methods such as direct mail, door hangers, or flyers still work, as long as the proper message is conveyed and the sample size (how much is distributed) is big enough to assess results. Either way though, your company needs to be seen where your prospects are looking and also at the times they are looking.

The Importance of Being Found Online

When spring time comes or the beginning of winter and prospects are looking for a service provider, they head online to look for an adequate service to solve their problem and fulfill their needs. If you want more people coming into your business as paid clients, it’s crucial that you’re seen on these ultra popular platforms – the search engines and social media. These platforms are trafficked by countless people in your company’s service area every single day, and when you compare that to distributing offline print advertising, it quickly becomes a no brainer thanks to the low comparative cost of running Facebook ads or being found in the Google search results. For as little as fifty dollars, your business can be seen by hundreds if not thousands of interested prospects, whereas fifty bucks towards door hangers gives you about 100 hangers and then you have to spend an entire day (or pay an employee) putting them on door handles. And as an owner, if have to do this (despite having more things that must be done in your business such as fulfilling services or meeting with new clients) this could be costing you thousands of dollars of lost opportunity to earn revenue as a result.

So if you’re looking to grow your business, utilizing platforms such as online search engines are crucial. Service providers that offer professional SEO for lawn care and landscaping companies will be one of your best allies for being located online and getting more clients coming into your company.

This video goes in depth with explaining more about the benefits of search engine visibility with home service businesses.

3 Essential Elements To Marketing An Outdoor Service Business Online

Getting more clients for an outdoor services company such as a lawn service or landscaping design firm can be tough initially.  Many lawn and landscape business owners still believe in using only traditional offline marketing practices such as flyers, door hangers, direct mail and newspapers.  While these methods aren’t totally dead, they’re becoming more irrelevant by the day due to the incredible amount of reach and impact online marketing can have in a very short amount of time and often times at a fraction of the cost of offline methods.

The keys to success in any outdoor service business are having solid systems in place to efficiently accomplish the tasks needed to generate revenue and maximize profits, the same approach should be taken when it comes to marketing your business online.

Get Listed On ‘Google My Business’

Google My Business allows business owners to have their company’s contact information appear in the search results – usually near the top, for their locale. This is sometimes referred to as the map-pack, Google 3-pack, etc.  Claiming your Google Business listing is completely free. The biggest draw to having a Google Business listing is the potential return on investment (ROI), because having your business seen at the top of the Google search rankings in your city is absolutely priceless.

Whenever a person in the area your business is located (you can select the radius of your service area when setting up your listing) searches for the keyword + city, your listing can be shown at the very top of the results allowing a prospective customer to “push-to-call” when browsing on their phone or visit your website with just one click.  When digital marketing agencies do SEO for Landscaping companies, they must have this “dialed” to optimize any marketing campaign.

Get An SEO Test Done On Your Site

Before we get into scanning your website – here is why “SEO” (search engine optimization) is important to every green industry business.

In order for your site to be able to become indexed and ranked by the search engines.  There are numerous parameters in which your site must abide by and when done properly, your site will be “rewarded” by the search engines and your site is placed near or at the top of the search engine results pages (SERPs) where thousands of prospective customers are searching for your company’s services.

Some of these parameters include:

  • Proper on-page content structure (Headlines, Text, Images located throughout your page(s), etc.)
  • Off-page (obtaining back links, citations, etc.)
  • Page loading speed
  • Social back links (links pointing from your website to your social media profiles)
  • Social media sharing (how often your website is being shared in posts on social media)

These are just some of the factors that come into play when it comes to getting your website to be search engine friendly.

Set Up Google Analytics Tracking

The world’s best marketing won’t be of much help unless it can be tracked properly. The old adage of “You can’t manage what you don’t track” holds true when it comes to marketing your business online. You need to know what’s working and what is not working so you can adjust accordingly to ensure a maximum return on investment of your online advertising efforts.

Some examples of this could be if an ad isn’t performing as it should or the costs-per-click/cost-per-lead is higher than normal, the ad’s image or copywriting may need to be adjusted, or another example would be if your website has important information educating prospective customers about your services but it’s somewhere that it’s not easily found, this would need to be adjusted. Occurrences like this can be tracked using resources such as Google Analytics/Console.

This video explains more on the topic of establishing a web presence for your lawn care or landscaping business and getting it found online by prospective clients.

The Ideal Method For Marketing Your Lawn Care & Landscaping Business

When it comes to getting more clients for a business that performs work or services on houses, it is crucial that a person’s company is found online, otherwise their business will never be able to grow and scale.  Today’s technological advances mean more opportunity for a company’s prospective clients to see a business and what they represent as well as the products and services they sell.  This in turn reflects the amount of persistence that must be put towards having your outdoor home service business being found online.  At a minimum a lawn care operator, landscaper, tree service, irrigation company, or any other green industry business absolutely must have a website for their business.

A Website Alone Is Not Enough For Your Online Marketing

In order to be a relevant company in your marketplace along with being able to educate your prospective clients about you, your business, and what it can do for your prospects in terms of the services you offer, it is imperative that your company is found online.  One of the best methods to getting your company found online is through search engine optimization, or SEO for short.  This method involves optimizing your company’s website according to a protocol that basically tells Google that your company’s website contains relevant information about the subject at hand, in this case it would be your lawn care, landscaping, snow removal, and/or irrigation business and the areas your business serves and that your online entity provides the most value for those readers and that it should essentially be rewarded (for lack of a better term) and rewarding in this sense would mean showing the website closer to the top of the search results for said keyword.

Search Engine Optimization For Lawn Care & Landscaping Firms

When it comes to getting your lawn care business found online, the best method method that provides the most consistent results (ie. increasing the amount of visitors to your website) is SEO.  Other methods such as paid traffic are powerful but can become quite advanced for the average business owner if one is wanting to do it themselves.  However, if one is unable to figure out their SEO campaign for their lawn care, tree service, irrigation company, or landscaping business website, it is best to hire a professional digital marketing agency that’s specifically set up to do SEO for Landscapers.  These types of agencies are familiar with your business and can relate to your outdoor service business to identify your company’s marketing problems, and solve them quickly to get a more streamlined approach set up for your company and in turn drive more prospective clients to your business.  This can prove to be worth hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars when you consider the fact of how much every client is worth to your business.

Why Everyone Who Has A Home or Property Should Mow Their Lawn

What is Lawn Mowing?

Maintaining a rough lawn requires only occasional cutting with a suitable machine, or grazing by animals. Maintaining a smooth and closely cut lawn at your home, be it for aesthetic or practical reasons or because social pressure from neighbors and local municipal ordinances requires it, necessitates more organized and regular treatments. Usually once a week is adequate for maintaining a lawn in most climates. However, in the hot and rainy seasons of regions contained in hardiness zones greater than eight, lawns may need to be maintained up to two times a week.

Further In-Depth On Lawn Mowing

Summer lawn care requires raising the lawn mower for cool season grasses, and lowering it for warm season lawns. In order to remain green (to prevent dormancy), most grass lawns will require longer and more frequent watering, best done in early morning or evening to reduce evaporation. When grass is actively growing is also the time to apply an all-purpose fertilizer to help keep the turf green and build string roots.

In the autumn, thatch buildup that occurs in warm season grasses and it should be removed, although lawn experts are divided in their opinions on this. This is also a good time to add a sandy loam top dressing and apply a fertilizer containing some type of wetting agent. Cool season lawns can be planted in autumn if there is adequate rainfall.

Lawn care in the winter is minimal for most areas if your location doesn’t experience the ground freezing and snow, requiring only light feedings of organic material, such as green-waste compost, and minerals to encourage earthworms and beneficial microbes.  The topic alone of organic materials for fertilizing lawns will be designated for a different and separate blog post of its own as it requires intricacies that’d be too much for this post.

Lawn Mowing Recommended Procedures

  • Mowing regularly with a sharp blade at an even height
  • Not mowing when the lawn is wet
  • Removing no more than 30% of the plant tissue in any one cut
  • Alternating the direction of cut from the previous mowing
  • Scarifying/dethatching and sweeping/raking (to remove dead grass, leaves, and other debris, and to prevent tufting)
  • Rolling, to encourage tilling (branching of grass plants) and to firm the ground (for sports use only)
  • Top dressing with sand, soil or other material
  • Aeration with a spike aerator or plug/core aerator (to relieve compaction of the soil and allow greater absorption of nutrients)
  • Seeding to cover patchy areas and maintain thick turf

Finding A Fire Damage Restoration Company in Minneapolis

Timeline For Repairing A Home After Smoke Damage

In the event of a fire that covered your home, business, industrial structure with ash, soot, and smoke, it is crucial to start the cleaning process as soon as your are able to in order to prevent potentially permanent damage on your structure, assets, and possessions within the structure.

Tips From A Professional Fire Damage Repair Company

  • Safety should be of utmost concern. Always wear gloves when working with damaged materials and wear safety glasses and a dust mask.
  • Keep the structure and its room ventilated, use windows or fans if able.
  • Clean and sanitize the entire structure. Starting with the ceilings, then walls, and other structural pieces, then the floors.
  • Vacuum all flooring to pick up any and all small debris and soot.
  • All cloth items such as drapes, blinds, etc. must be washed, high quality clothing must be dry cleaned.
  • Nearly all exterior walls can be washed with a gas or electric high pressure power washer
  • If the damage is incredibly severe at your business, it may be best to hire a professional such as Fire Damage Repair 24/7, a Minneapolis Fire Damage Restoration Company
  • Always communicate with your insurance company immediately after the disaster, the sooner you get in touch, the sooner you’re able to begin the restoring process
  • If the structure or house looks to be a total loss based on measurements your adjuster has claimed, you’ll need to get in touch with a general contractor

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Cleaning Up The Mess Left Behind From Smoke

Cleaning up any and all residue must be done immediately.  During the burning, gases and other air molecules are moved quickly throughout the structure, and are placed everywhere within reach. This occurs through the entire duration of the fire’s burn, and residue from the smoke behind ingrained by layers which is evident by inspection after the disaster. Once a smoke damage restoration contractor arrives on site, the residue may be nearly impossible to remove.

Aside from just getting rid of residue, you’ll have to remove the pungent smell of smoke. Smoke restoration professionals use a common four-step removal:

  • Removing the derived spot of the odor, this may mean removing materials, assets, or possessions from the structure that are damaged.
  • Clean any and all items that are not considered a total loss.
  • Counteract the odors with fog or gas that seeks out and combines with odor-causing substances to remove the smell.
  • Seal away all items that can be salvaged and store them in an ozone protected storage facility to help restore the smoke smell from the items.

Being effected by a fire can be a daunting and undesirable experience, but by informing yourself more about the clean up process after a fire, you can minimize the need for costly repair. Fire and smoke restoration experts such as Fire Damage Repair 24/7 can help you return your home, business, or industrial structure back to normal.