Marketing & Sales Insight for the Lawn & Landscape Industry

What Makes You So Unique??

Chris Heiler

What makes your company unique? If I asked you to list a handful of traits that, in total, truly differentiated you from your competitors, what would you write down?

I would guess that your list of traits would be very similar to those of our clients we've taken through this same exercise. It might look like this:

  • The quality of our work is better
  • Our customer service is better
  • We offer better pricing
  • We are more dependable
  • We are more professional
  • Our staff is more educated
  • Our staff has more experience
  • We have better relationships with our vendors
  • We have more personal relationships with our clients

"Better" is subjective.

And "more better" is never a sound business strategy.1

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The Right and Wrong Way to Diversify Your Landscaping Services

Chris Heiler

In my last article, "Squashing the Full Service Myth", I called bull shit on this idea that your customers want a one-stop shop for all their outdoor needs.

I can summarize it like this:

If "full service" is your company's calling card then you are undifferentiated to the point you are easily replaceable by any competitor claiming the same.

"Full service" is not a strategy, my friends. I think of it more as a "happy accident" you've either intentionally or unintentionally grown into.

While offering every service under the sun may seem like an ideal way to grow top line revenue (spoiler: it's not), this approach to diversification will undoubtedly limit your profit potential.

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A Candid Look at the Risks Associated with Creating Another Brand for Your Green Industry Company

Chris Heiler

Purchase our entire collection of Green Ways comics on Amazon

Have you considered spinning off one of your service offerings or divisions into a separate company and brand?

This is not an uncommon strategy in the lawn and landscape industry. We've worked with numerous companies who have attempted this.

Here are a couple off the top of my head:

Kingstowne Lawn & Landscape -->

-> Kingstowne Pest Defense

-> Kingstowne Home Services

Neave Group Outdoor Solutions -->

-> Neave Pools

-> Neave Decor

-> Neave Masonry

-> and others

This is exactly what Archie and the Greenbelt team are scheming about in our Green Ways comic.

Greenbelt Outdoor Services -->

-> Greenbelt Pools

-> Greenbelt Lawn Care

-> Greenbelt Tree Care

In the branding world this strategy is referred to as "brand extension".

Let me be clear: I'm not endorsing this strategy. I'm simply calling it out for what it is and offering an honest assessment of the opportunities and risks in this article.

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3 Ingredients for a Perfect Lawn Care or Landscaping Photography Shoot

Chad Diller

Purchase our entire collection of Green Ways comics on Amazon

Just as photography has the potential for a positive reaction, it also carries the tremendous capacity to leave a very bad taste in your mouth. As our friends at Greenbelt Outdoor Services in this week’s Green Ways comic are realizing, what they expected is not what they got. It’s like when a cook substitutes, miscalculates or completely omits an ingredient. Yuck!

The old saying of, “A picture’s worth a thousand words”, definitely holds true. If you’ve been following our content for some time, you’ve heard us advocating for the value of professional photography for marketing landscaping, lawn care, and tree services.

But your picture’s “thousand words” are going to come across as  bitter, dry, flat chocolate cake if you leave out the necessary ingredients or don’t execute them in a specific manner.

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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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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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