The 8 Latest & Best Ways to Advertise a Landscaping Business
Do your friends and family often ask you for free landscaping advice? I bet they do. I still get the question, “Hey, you do landscaping, right?”
After I politely explain that, yes, I’ve been in the landscape industry for 25 years, BUT the last 12 of those have been doing marketing for landscaping companies, I just end up trying to help them the best I can.
There are three reasons you and I get asked for landscaping advice.
- We have practical experience.
- We have advanced expertise and training.
- We are viewed as a trustworthy, helpful resource.
I’m willing to bet these friends and family would not ask for this kind of landscaping advice from an insurance company or a software vendor. That would be silly.
But yet, when I search online for resources to advertise a landscaping business, that’s what I often find. And, some of the advice is very biased (a postcard vendor wanting companies to spend more on direct mail).
Unfortunately, some of the advice is just dead wrong.
So today, I’m going to hand out more free advice about the best ways to advertise a landscaping business. These insights will be based on my 12 years of practical landscaping advertising experience for dozens of companies.
Important Foundational Info
I want to get two critical things out of the way. Read this before you scroll down and just jump to the landscaping advertising ideas.
Difference Between Marketing & Advertising
Advertising is a form of marketing – they are not the same – and the terms should not be used interchangeably. In its simplest form, advertising is paid or sponsored messaging.
Marketing is much broader and includes disciplines such as:
- Market research and analysis
- Website design and development
- Search engine optimization
- Content marketing
- Public relations
As we unpack landscaping advertising ideas, make sure you have paid adequate attention to the list above first.
Understand the Rules of Landscaping Advertising
We previously wrote an article, “The 10 Rules of Landscaping & Lawn Care Advertising: What You Should Know”. We explored the lack of credibility in advertising, what it can accomplish, and its limitations. It’s a good foundation as you explore the ideas below.
So now that you understand the critical foundation, let’s jump into the discussion on landscaping ads.
1. Google Ads for Landscaping
In my experience, I’ve found that Google Ads, as a rule, work best for services that have an urgent need and a smaller ticket price. Landscaping services such as residential maintenance fit this bill well.
When it comes to landscaping design-build, Google Ads can be a viable medium if:
- You have ad copy that meets the searcher’s intent. Don’t be too general. Have dozens of alternatives based on their interest.
- You have extremely impressive landing pages (pro-quality photos and video, great user experience). Make sure these pages also meet the searcher’s intent.
- Your sales process and team are diligent in following up quickly and making multiple attempts to contact the lead.
- You enroll leads into automation and campaigns to continue to nurture their interest in the next 12-18 months.
When it comes to using Google Ads for commercial landscaping, I think it’s just a complete waste of money. I’ve had clients beg us to run the ads and this point has been proven over and over. B2B clients use professional recommendations and also do way more research on websites before they reach out to landscaping companies.
[RELATED VIDEO SERIES: Google Ads for Landscaping Companies]
2. Email Marketing for Landscapers
I hinted at this above. It’s critical to nurture the interest of your future landscaping customers. They may be a hot lead on Sunday afternoon but be ice cold by mid-week when other pressures and distractions hit.
If you’re collecting email addresses in your website forms and over the phone, consider this contact in your list as the valuable asset it is. Don’t spam them and send them general emails.
Give them something of value immediately. Nurture their initial interest but then include them in future campaigns that highlight other projects and explore seasonal considerations. The goal is to give them what they want, not spam them with your newsletter.
[RELATED READING: The 7 Sins of Email Marketing - Is Your Landscaping Company Guilty of These?]
3. Truck Wraps
This is truly an art. There’s a delicate balance. There’s too much and too little. A great vehicle wrap can last 5-10 years. Just think about how many people will see your trucks in prime neighborhoods and properties!
Your trucks are rolling billboards. Make sure they look their best and say the right things.
[RELATED READING: Wrapping Landscaping & Lawn Care Vehicles - Ideas, Examples, & Costs]
4. Yard Signs
Landscaping yard signs are a great landscaping advertising idea on the residential front. If you have a showcase maintenance account that everyone in a development sees, ask your client if you can keep a sign out for a week. You could even offer the client a credit or give them a gift.
This also works for a design-build project that could span days, weeks, or months!
Be sure your sign is simple and clean. It’s all about the brand recognition and logo. At one spot of the sign, I’d even throw in a “Want your yard to look this good?” Then add a small scannable QR code for people walking by. For a design-build project, these signs could read, “Landscaping Transformation Underway”.
For commercial landscaping, it may be harder to get approvals for signs on properties.
5. Events & Networking
I think the right opportunities here could work to advertise a landscaping business. However, it’s more about the how than the what. I and other landscaping professionals have found success at:
- Home, builder, and association shows
- Referral networking groups (BNI, PRE, etc.)
- Target client associations (BOMA, Chambers, Builder Associations)
I believe the key to being successful here is consistency, passion, and helpfulness. Put a lot of thought and creativity into booths. Make sure team members are selfless, engaging, and helpful at every event.
Provide value to the people you encounter. It’s not about throwing out logo’d tchotchkes and begging people for consultations. Play the long game and be truly unique!
6. Direct Mail
Okay, you can waste a ton of money on postcards and mailers. However, this is a great landscaping advertising idea if you execute it the right way.
- Timing is everything
- Consistent repetition is important
- Less is more with design
- Don’t forget to add social proof
- Make these pieces all about your client, not your company
- Have a unique, compelling offer
- Use authentic, professional images
Here is one of the many postcards we designed for clients. We also created ways to track the activity on these postcards. That’s very important to measure what works!
[RELATED READING: 5 Reasons Your Landscaping Mailers & Print Ads “Don’t Work”]
7. Landscaping Ads in Magazines
View the list of recommendations for landscaping advertising idea #6 above. The same is true for magazine ads. I’d also recommend giving a lot of consideration to just how many ads are in a publication and where they are placed. It’s better to go with a publication with fewer ads.
Consider the perceived value of the publication. Does it have unique stories and is the overall quality superior? Don’t advertise in something that just gets pitched in the trash.
Likewise, consider the potential audience for magazines. Is it your target audience? Just weigh all of this as you track the ROI (leads and sold landscaping contracts). I’d give a publication two years of multi-month placements to prove if it can deliver.
8. Social Media Advertising for Landscapers
Here’s an unpopular opinion. I think that, in most cases, social ads are a waste of time for landscaping companies. But this is because most landscapers are doing them wrong.
We all know the intent of social media users. They’re annoyed by the ads and they’re killing time. They aren’t searching for a landscaper.
Now while I say this, I will mention that there are key times throughout the year when social ads may make more sense. There could be a sense of urgency about a particular issue.
If you have done all of the foundational things (see the article intro) and have maxed out and optimized your Google Ads budget, then consider adding social ads. I find that Facebook and Instagram are best for residential landscaping. LinkedIn works well for brand recognition for commercial landscaping companies.
Oh, and make sure to read the bullet points in landscaping advertising idea #6. The same principles apply here to social ads.
[RELATED PODCAST: Social Media Then & Now - What We Got Right and Wrong]
What to Avoid When Advertising a Landscaping Business
The following list is advertising mediums that our clients and I have personally tested and found to be a waste of time and money.
- Lead Generation Websites: HomeAdvisor, Angi, Thumbtack, NextDoor, Houzz, Yelp
- Yellowpage Ads (print and digital)
- Retargeting Ads (the ones that follow you around the internet)
- Radio and Television
A Winning Landscaping Advertising Strategy
I hope this discussion based on practical experience and expertise has helped you start to ask the right questions about your landscaping advertising strategies. Following these principles and advertising rules will lead you to future success with maximum profit.
If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to me on LinkedIn. If you want regular tips like this to grow your landscaping business, subscribe to our blog. We’ll send new articles right to your inbox. And, if you’re ready to create a comprehensive marketing and advertising strategy, feel free to request a consultation.
In the meantime, I’ll be here helping my friends and family figure out the landscaping in their yards. ;)
Image Sources: Dall-E AI image generator