Marketing & Sales Insight for the Lawn & Landscape Industry

Positioning and the Fear of Missing Out

Chris Heiler

Positioning is an exercise in exclusion.1

And this can be scary.

I find most of you understand the reasoning behind a thoughtful positioning strategy for your business; you even recognize and admire other companies who have sound positioning of their own.

Yet, you rationalize away a more narrow positioning for your own company.

You won’t commit.

Until recently I’ve believed it to be a fear of commitment that separates Just Another Landscaper from the well-positioned companies.

Digging deeper, I now believe it is really a fear of missing out (FOMO).

I don’t want to box myself in,” a client shared with me recently.

Translation: Limiting who he chooses to work with and what he offers will thus limit his ability to grow his business.

This is a myth.

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A 5-Point Checklist for More Effectively Qualifying Prospects (BANT+P)

Chris Heiler

Purchase our entire collection of Green Ways comics on Amazon

This comic makes me cringe. Being a landscape designer in the past, I know Ted’s pain well; as I’m sure you do.

You and your sales people shouldn’t have to waste so much time pursuing bad fit prospects or those who ultimately won’t do business with you.

I know this is a huge frustration for many of you. But it doesn’t have to be.

To avoid this you will need to implement a framework your entire team can use to effectively qualify new leads that come in the door.

With formal guidelines in place you can then train staff and hold them accountable to your qualifying standards.

If qualifying is left solely to the discretion of your sales people you’ll end up with handfuls of bad fit clients and frustrated team members.

I’ve seen first hand how this plays out. On one extreme you may have a rainmaker – usually the owner of the company – who will chase anything and everything. The other extreme is where the Design Diva resides, who is only interested in the unique projects that appeal to him/her and his/her overblown ego.

Qualify prospects using the BANT(+P) framework

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How to Bundle Your Landscape Design Services (Including Real Examples)

Chris Heiler

In the previous article I discussed common ways landscaping companies and professional landscape designers charge for landscape design:

  • Freebie, foot-in-the-door offer
  • Small lump-sum fee (ex- $500)
  • Cost-based pricing (time x hourly rate)

Then I proposed the creative way I would price landscape design services if I still had my design firm today:

Price each client and project uniquely by offering three options and prices to choose from.

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How to Charge for Landscape Design to Win More Business and Make More Money

Chris Heiler

If you missed the previous article about whether or not to charge landscape consultation fees, I recommend you go back and read it.

Here’s a response to that article from a subscriber:

"What a great article on consultation fees! We’ve been using this strategy for two years. Not only does it do everything you stated in the article, charging a fee has opened up hundreds of hours per year of new time to work on my company as opposed to meeting with potential clients that have absolutely no intention of buying our services. Our close ratio went from 40% to 80% almost instantly when we implemented this strategy." ~ Carson Browning, ITM Landscapes

I love getting feedback like this from readers. Keep your comments coming.

Now, let’s talk about charging a fee for your landscape design expertise.

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Why and How to Address Cost of Services on Your Website

Chad Diller

If I gave you three guesses of what activity occupies the most time on my 13-year-old son’s smartphone, I’d be willing to bet that you wouldn’t be able to even nail it with three tries. It’s not games nor social media. It’s researching prices on Amazon, Craigslist, and Google.

Even if we drive to a physical store, my boy knows what the item costs elsewhere and where he could even get an upgraded version of it for a smarter purchase. In fact, it’s probable that we won’t even leave the store with the said item in-hand, and it will be ordered online before we even walk out the door. It happens all of the time.

He’s the personification of the modern, educated consumer. Guess what...he’s going to be your customer in the years to come.

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When, Why, and How to Charge a Landscape Consultation Fee

Chris Heiler

This is an article I've been excited about writing.

As many of you know, my career started as a landscape designer, including time with a large design/build company and seven years operating my own design firm.

With my last design commission in the rearview mirror (2011) , I see in hindsight a lot of things I did right on the sales side but also some missed opportunities.

In other words, I left a lot of money on the table.

What I've come to realize is that I lacked a pragmatic, consistent pricing strategy for my company, especially on the front end of the sales process (i.e.- consulting and design).

In this article and the next, I want to share with you exactly how I would approach pricing and selling landscape design/build work today if I still had my design firm.

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This Just In! 7 Tips to Get Featured in Local News Media

Chad Diller

It’s been a hard day of work. You put out work-fires and your easy chair and the evening news seems just the prescription to escape your business woes, realizing there are tougher things going on in the world. But it continues. Wedged in between the latest political scandal and the traffic report appears your nemesis on the local news.

There’s your competitor, smiling in all their interview-giving glory. All of a sudden, they’re the go-to expert?! You scoff and shake your head. Every day you pour your heart and soul into your company, team, and clients. You live for this stuff, and yet somehow you don’t get the publicity and brand awareness you deserve.

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5 Meaningful Website Metrics to Understand & Track

Chad Diller

I’ve been in your seat...scratching my head at meetings with a local digital agency, begging them to just make some sort of sense of it to me. I’m not naturally a “numbers guy”. If you throw too many website analytic figures and percentages onto a report, my brain turns to mush. Give me the big picture then tell me how to fix it!

Although I’ve learned how to understand more of these numbers over the years, I’m still amazed at how many digital marketing experts and landscaping professionals are still content with mushed brains. You should be able to more easily understand what really matters to grow your business.

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