Marketing & Sales Insight for the Lawn & Landscape Industry

Video Series:  Killer Lawn Care Marketing Ideas

Chad Diller

I've gotta say...I really love working with lawn care companies.

Maybe it's due to the fact that for eight years, I treated thousands of lawns.

Maybe it was due to the fact that this type of work seemed to be the easiest service for me to sell at my 7-year stint as a salesperson at a full-service lawn and landscape company. 

Or possibly it was the thrill I felt figuring out new ways to market lawn care services to add thousands of new lawn care customers each year. 

Whatever the case, it's a rush. But, I get as equally frustrated when I see lawn care companies trying to do their best but failing or getting lackluster results.

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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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5 Reasons Your Lawn Care & Landscaping Mailers and Print Ads “Don’t Work”

Chad Diller

“Yeah, we tried postcards and mailers and they didn’t work. Oh, and we spent all this money to put ads in this magazine and that was a bust too.”

I get it. I managed an annual marketing budget of over $300,000 for many years for a full-service lawn and landscape company and tried all sorts of mailers and ads. Unfortunately, it’s a lot of trial and error.

But, I may be able to spare you some frustration. After all, if you’re dropping tens of thousands of dollars each year on lawn care and landscaping mailers or advertisements, you should be able to achieve and measure success, right?

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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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How Technology Can Save Your Sales from Being Terminated

Chad Diller

This article was originally published in Turf magazine, where Chad writes a monthly column on sales and marketing tips for lawn and landscape companies.

One of my favorite movie franchises is the Terminator series. There’s just something about the impossible task of overthrowing the evil, cold technological forces which are attempting to extinguish the human race. The story takes fragile, uncertain characters and transforms them into powerful heroes that lead a movement for all mankind.

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