Marketing & Sales Insight for the Lawn & Landscape Industry

The Benefits of Limiting Your Production Capacity (or, How to Increase Profitability in 2019)

Chris Heiler

Purchase our entire collection of Green Ways comics on Amazon

We've already burned through the first month in a new year, my friends. Wow...

At Landscape Leadership 2018 was one of our best years yet. I can say that based both on the financial goals we achieved as well as the meaningful impact we had on the green industry companies we work with.

I hope you had similar success in 2018.

In this article I want to share the single strategic initiative that I believe led to our success last year.

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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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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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Reconsidering What You Do and Who You Do It For

Chris Heiler

Purchase our entire collection of Green Ways comics on Amazon

Here's a topic I've been thinking a lot about after talking and visiting with dozens of lawn and landscape companies over the past two months:

Why do you choose to offer so many services to so many people?

It is a choice. And, it’s a choice that belongs to you, the creator and owner of your enterprise.

You don’t act like it’s a choice you have much say in. Instead, you let customers and employees make these critical decisions for you. It appears that you've surrendered control, feeling obligated to say “yes” to everybody and everything.

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These 3 Tools Will Help Your Sales Team Close More Deals

Chris Heiler

Purchase our entire collection of Green Ways comics on Amazon

With today’s technology and “big data” at our fingertips you wouldn’t think it’d be so difficult to source and sell to your prospects, whether that’s a homeowner, HOA board, or facilities manager.

Yet, with today’s hyperconnected buyer being so much more savvy (and isolated, I would argue) compared to the pre-Web2.0 consumer of only a decade ago, earning their attention is no easy task.

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3 Proven and Practical Steps for Generating More Positive Online Reviews

Chris Heiler

Purchase our entire collection of Green Ways comics on Amazon

This article originally appeared in Lawn & Landscape Magazine's December 2017 issue.

“Chris, our customers constantly tell us how much they love us… but they won’t share it with Google. It shouldn’t be this hard to get online reviews!”

This sentiment has been shared with me dozens of times by our own clients. Their frustration is understandable.

Positive reviews from a third-party demonstrate your authority in a more credible way than you could yourself. This breaks down buyer resistance, which can be the difference between a prospect clicking through to your website or continuing their search without you.

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Some Thoughts On Your Annual Marketing Budget (or, Why I'd Like You to Spend More Money)

Chris Heiler

Purchase our entire collection of Green Ways comics on Amazon

'Tis the season for budgeting.

You have started... right?

Here's a question you might ponder during the budgeting process:

"Why should we spend money on marketing when we have all the work we can handle?"

This is actually a common objection raised in conversation with business owners, especially when the economy is doing well.

I'll respond to this with a few questions of my own.

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5 Questions to Ask Yourself Before You Send That E-Newsletter (or any promotional email)

Chris Heiler

Purchase our entire collection of Green Ways comics on Amazon

This article was originally published in the November 2017 issue of Lawn & Landscape magazine.

I live on the top floor of a contemporary mid-rise apartment downtown Austin, Texas. While I take great pride in my horticultural skills on display on the balcony, a need for lawn care services for my 70 square foot concrete and steel space does not exist.

My living circumstances, however, do not seem to disqualify me from receiving dozens of email newsletters from well-intentioned lawn and landscape companies from around the country (oddly, none in Austin).

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