150+ Surveys Reveal Big Lawn Care & Landscaping Marketing & Sales Challenges

survey lawn care landscaping marketing and sales

One thing I’ve always loved about the green industry is sharing experiences with peers. From the horror stories to ones that double you over in laughter, I’ll take them all!

You probably can relate to my experience over the past 25+ years. You realize the things you are stressed about (and even embarrassed to admit) regarding your lawn care or landscaping company aren’t all that unique. 

It’s comforting to know you’re not alone even when the solutions seem elusive.

Chad Diller - Landscape Leadership client mixer 4

As a lawn care and landscaping marketing agency, we have a lot of frank conversations.

When lawn care and landscaping companies request a meeting with us, I have them complete a brief survey. One of the questions I ask is, “What are 2-3 of your company’s biggest marketing and sales challenges?”

I recently analyzed 150+ answers to that question. The result highlighted five key points. I hope exploring these validates what may be keeping you up at night. 

But more importantly, I don’t want you just to commiserate. I want you to fix these challenges in your lawn care or landscaping business. So, I’ll share a bunch of resources for you to dig into.  


Brand Differentiation and Market Expansion

Almost all of the 150+ business owners I surveyed told me that standing out in a competitive market is getting tougher for lawn care and landscaping companies. Big competitors feel like giants you can’t beat. Then there is the never-ending list of small competitors popping up like weeds. 

commodity of lawn care and landscaping companies

Many of the company owners I talk to initially think their brand is pretty different. But after studying other brands together, we find that many of the “points of differentiation” and claims that companies make aren’t that unique at all. This leads to your target customer seeing your brand as an easily replaceable commodity. 

Here’s a helpful article on how to fix that.

[RELATED READING:  The Fine Art of Positioning - or How to Differentiate Yourself]

Many companies I talked to were considering adding new services and launching branches in new markets. 

Each of those initiatives has its own specific set of challenges. When your green industry peers making these moves, it can seem like a great path forward. 

However, this isn’t always the best choice for some lawn care and landscaping companies. 

If you’re considering this, read these articles.

[RELATED PODCAST: The Right & Wrong Ways to Diversify Your Landscaping Services]

[RELATED ARTICLE: Here’s One Small Step That Will Instantly Strengthen Your Positioning & Make You More Money]


Lead Generation and Qualification

Lawn care and landscaping companies in the $2-5M mark typically plateau when their good looks, reputation, and ol’ word-of-mouth dry up. 

A common survey response was "What we’ve done in the past simply won't get us to the next level."

This typically means exploring new lead generation avenues in which company owners don’t always have a high level of confidence. 

lawn care landscaping leads

They want to know which digital marketing methods work and have skeptical questions about ROI. If this hits home, here are a few resources you should check out. 

[RELATED READING: The 8 Latest & Best Ways to Advertise a Landscaping Business]

[RELATED READING: 16 Lawn Care Lead Generation Strategies - Ranked Best to Worst]

Then there’s the challenge of lead quality. Some lawn care and landscaping companies told me they already get plenty of leads. Their problem? They feel like they waste a ton of time on unqualified prospects. 

Your marketing strategy and content could be making this problem worse. Or, your team may need to learn a better way to qualify landscaping and lawn care leads. Here are a few resources to check out if this is the case.

[RELATED READING:  13 Website Elements - with Examples - That Disqualify Bad Landscaping & Lawn Care Leads]

[RELATED READING:  A 5-Point Checklist for More Effectively Qualifying Prospects w/ BANT+P


Digital Presence and Online Marketing

Ranking in search results, getting clicks, and turning website visitors into leads isn’t as easy as many people would think. It’s common for business owners to tell me they know they need a new landscaping or lawn care website.

lawn care landscaping websites bad

But yet, this isn’t simple and many company owners tell me they had a new website built (by another agency) a few years ago and it's still not doing them many favors.

Here’s a great article to know when your website is becoming long in the tooth (plus a 10-point quiz to tell if the time for a redesign has come).  

[RELATED READING:  Understanding the Lifespan of Landscaping & Lawn Care Websites]

Some lawn and landscape companies have explored various digital marketing avenues. They’ve tried blogging, SEO, Google Ads, and social media and are still frustrated because they're not getting traction.

As goes with many marketing initiatives, it’s not in the “what” you do but the “how” you do it. If you’d like to dig into this, check out these resources.

[RELATED READING:  5 Lawn & Landscaping Content Marketing Strategy Blunders]

[RELATED VIDEO SERIES:  PPC Google Ads for Lawn Care & Landscaping Companies]


Sales Strategy and Process Development

When I started digging into lawn care and landscaping sales processes and technology something was abundantly clear for almost all of the 150+ companies I talked to.

There aren’t defined processes or sales playbooks. Heck, I remember this myself. We had a team of 10 lawn and landscaping salespeople at the last organization I worked at and everyone had a different way of doing things. Training manual? What's that?

Lawn care and landscaping companies often spend so much time and energy generating MORE leads without figuring out the holes in their sales process. 


Image Source:  Joshua Tree Experts (who has a killer process and team!)

Leads are great, but if your sales team doesn’t have a formal process or ways to measure all activities from prospecting to closing deals, how will you know what opportunities you’re wasting?

If you’d like to increase your closing percentages and make selling lawn care and landscaping easier, check out these resources:

[RELATED VIDEO: Build a Great Lawn Care Sales Team - Recruiting Tips from a $8M Company]

[RELATED READING:  Lost Opportunities - 3 Things Every Landscaping Sales Manager Should Be Tracking]


Resource Allocation and Skill Set

I love it when I hear that lawn and landscape companies have an internal marketing person. Add a sales manager to the mix, and I get even more excited. 

Once a company gets to $3M and higher, the owner has so many hats to wear, that it's likely time to have more focused team members.

sales team meeting

Image Source:  Oasis Turf & Tree (whose sales manager regularly coaches and monitors their sales team!)

But that’s an expense many business owners are afraid to invest in. So what ends up happening is they create a combo role with 4-5 areas of focus.

Marketing and sales management become an afterthought. 

It’s an exercise in resource allocation, whether that’s people or dollars. Check out the helpful tips in these articles.

[RELATED READING: The Biggest Challenges Faced By In-House Marketers at Lawn & Landscape Companies - Survey Results]

[RELATED READING: When to Hire In-House Marketing Help - and How Much to Pay]

Then there’s the whole issue of skillset. Some of the companies that were bold enough to hire internal marketing people tell me they "didn't work out".

This is often a case of unrealistic expectations.

One person can't be a great sales manager, marketing strategist, creative director, writer, data analyst, video producer, paid ads specialist, and project manager.

When you find that unicorn I want to hire them to work for Landscape Leadership.

This is why it’s critical to find a great team member who’s great at rallying the troops. They can reign you in as a busy business owner, get valuable feedback from your team, and work with outsourced specialists to handle the heavy lifting. 


Find Great Sales & Marketing Partners for Your Lawn Care & Landscaping Company

Do you know what all of these 150+ survey takers had in common? They weren’t afraid to seek help. They were humble about their struggles and ready to share them. 

Chad Diller - Landscape Leadership client meeting 3

They also spent time reading, watching videos, exploring case studies, and talking to green industry peers who have blazed this trail ahead of them. 

Big challenges = Big opportunities. Go get it. Fix your problems.

If you like regular insights like these, join over 5,000 of your green industry peers and subscribe to our blog. And, if you’re ready to start fixing your big lawn care and landscaping marketing and sales challenges, request a meeting with us. 

Picture of Chad Diller

About Chad Diller

Chad is the President of Landscape Leadership. Prior to joining our team he served as a marketing manager for one of the Top 150 Companies in the Green Industry. In addition to his vast marketing experience, he also has held certifications such as an ISA Certified Arborist and Landscape Industry Certified Technician. He currently resides in beautiful Lancaster County, PA.

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