Introducing Joy Gendusa of Postcard Mania
Periodically, I’ll feature a guest post on my blog to help you, as a lawn care or landscaping company, see all of your options to getting more leads for your business. In this article, Joy Gendusa, founder of Postcard Mania, shares three proven strategies to help you generate more leads for the 2017 growing season.
Spring is just around the corner, and for the landscaping and lawn care industry, that means one thing…
Business is about to start booming!
What’s your plan for making sure your business gets its share of those jobs?
My company, PostcardMania, has helped more than 1180 landscaping and lawn care professionals with their marketing, and we track our clients’ campaign results — so we know what works.
And that’s why I’m here:
To help you generate more new customers this spring without reinventing the wheel!
So without further ado, here are three PROVEN strategies for successful landscaper marketing:
- Book $180,000 in new contracts with a targeted direct mail postcard campaign.
Postcards are a reliable, cost-effective lead generation tool for landscaping companies. Here are some stats to prove it:
- 39% of consumers try a business for the first time because of direct mail (Direct Marketing Association)
- 60% of direct mail recipients were influenced to visit a promoted website (USPS)
- Direct mail outperforms all digital channels by nearly 600% (DMA)
Isn’t direct mail outdated in our increasingly digital world, you ask?
In a word — nope!
Check this out: 92% of Millennials (you know, the people you see glued to their smartphones 24/7) have been influenced to make a purchase because of direct mail they received, according to National Mortgage Professional magazine.
One of my clients, a Colorado landscaping business, generated $180,000 in new jobs with their direct mail campaign!
They targeted owners of homes valued at $250,000 or more, which is the beauty of direct mail — you can market your business only to the people most likely to hire you!
No wasting marketing dollars reaching people who don’t need (or can’t afford) your services!
- Generate up to a 1,400% return on investment with a valuable offer.
Your prospects have no shortage of options when it comes to their landscaping and lawn care needs. You need to give them a reason to choose YOU!
Think about it this way:
You’re spending money on marketing, so you want to get the biggest bang for your marketing dollar. The way to do that?
Make your prospects an offer that is of high perceived value for them, but that doesn’t cost you too much.
Everybody wants to feel like they’re getting a great deal!
Here are the top four offers that my successful landscaping clients use on their postcards:
- 10-50% off a project or package
- Free estimate/analysis (paired with additional offers)
- First mow free
- Lawn maintenance packages starting at $90+/month
This client, a landscaper in Jupiter, FL, generated a 1,400% return on investment with their postcard that paired a free landscape audit with two other offers!
Whatever you choose to offer your prospects, remember this:
The potential revenue a loyal customer represents far outweighs whatever you gave away to generate the lead!
- Market consistently to bring in $108,000 in campaign revenue.
Repetition is a key component of any successful marketing campaign. That’s why you always see the same commercials over and over again on TV.
Think about how many times Bed, Bath and Beyond sends out their mailer with the 20% off coupon. Do you think they’re going broke doing that?
They’re not! They do it because it brings in money!
The first time you get that mailer, you may not need anything at Bed, Bath and Beyond. But the second or third time you get it, you might go, “Come to think of it, I could use a new set of sheets — and here’s a coupon!”
A majority of our successful green-industry clients — 60% — mail their postcards to the same recipients at least twice. One Illinois landscaper mailed to their list three times and generated $108,000 in new jobs!
There’s another way to increase your exposure with interested prospects…
You see, most of the people who receive your postcard and take an interest in your business will go directly to your website to learn more about you.
But according to Kissmetrics, 96% of those visitors are not ready to become customers right away. So they leave your website and go about their business — and possibly forget about you.
With Google follow-up ads, you stay in front of those prospects, reminding them of their interest until they become your customers! This kind of advertising (called remarketing or retargeting) has been shown to boost response by up to 400%, according to CMO.com!
What’s even better?
You can combine your direct mail postcards and Google follow-up ads into one simple, seamlessly integrated campaign with DirectMail2.0 and get that marketing repetition with zero extra effort on your part!
Here’s how it works:
The people who visit your website are “cookied” with an unobtrusive piece of coding that tells Google to show them your online banner ad. Then, as they browse the internet, they see your ad (which looks just like your postcard) on sites all across the Google Network (literally millions of sites)!
DirectMail2.0 also comes with mail tracking and call tracking, which shows you exactly how well your campaign is performing.
You simply log in to the online dashboard and you can see when your postcards get delivered, how many calls your postcards generate (you can also listen to the calls!), how many times people have seen your online ad and how many people click on it to get back to your website!
This Texas landscaping business sent out 10,000 postcards with DirectMail2.0, and over the course of their campaign they could see that:
- 27 calls came into their call tracking number
- 21 of those calls were from unique phone numbers
- Their banner ads were shown 278,000 times
- And 147 people clicked on their ad to go back to their website
Pretty amazing, right?
To learn more about DirectMail2.0 or to see how a direct mail campaign could work for your landscaping business, call 855-549-1313 for a FREE, no-obligation consultation. Or visit our website to see examples of landscaping postcards that are working for our clients right now!
Joy Gendusa is the Founder and CEO of PostcardMania. She grew her business from a small startup into an industry leader with only a phone, a computer and her own marketing savvy — NO capital injections or angel investors. Today, PostcardMania employs 200+ people and generates over $45 million annually. You can learn more about Joy’s journey and her marketing philosophy at PostcardMania.com.
You Need a Landscaping Content Writer in 2017 to Attract More People to Your Website and Keep You Top of Mind
Before you know it, it’s going to be 2017. What is your game plan for blogs, case studies, and web copy for your lawn care or landscape website in the New Year?
Whether you’re a large landscape maintenance contractor or a small lawn care company just starting out, all green industry companies need well-written, well-positioned content writing.
You may prefer to stay offline—but your potential customers are online—from millennial first time home buyers to senior citizens who’ve lived in their home for 40–50 years. And all of these people are using social media and search engines to find you and your competitors.
You can definitely increase the people coming to your virtual door—i.e. your website—through blogs, case studies, social media content and a professional looking website.
Here are five reasons why you need a landscaping content writer in 2017:
- To save you time and money: You may try writing your content yourself—but you’re aren’t sure about the nitty-gritty of good SEO practices. Or you may hire someone you found on a content site who has no inkling about the real green industry.
The result? You end up spending more time and money to find the right writer to produce the right content for your lawn care or landscape company’s website. Yet, you can save money and time by hiring a landscaping content writer the first time around.
- To attract the right type of people to your company’s website: Every business that has a website wants to have only quality prospects filling out their contact forms. A landscape writer can help bring in more qualified leads by using localization, SEO, keywords and other inbound marketing techniques to attract those prospects.
- To position you as an expert: You want to be the go-to landscape design/build company in your local region. A professional landscaping content writer can position you as an expert. How? Through the eyes of your ideal client.
- To answer your prospect’s questions about their lawn care, landscape maintenance and landscape design/build needs and desires: Your prospect came to your website to learn more about what you can do to help them solve their lawn care and landscape maintenance problems. A landscaping content writer can help you answer those questions by writing an FAQ page for your website and a couple of blogs about common lawn care problems in your area.
- Solidify your reputation as the go-to person in your city, county or region for the best lawn care and landscape maintenance solutions: In most regions of the U.S., there is plenty of lawn care and landscape business competition. How are you standing out from the crowd?
A landscape copywriter can help you with your goals by writing case studies, blogs and social media content keeping your ideal customer in mind. Plus, a landscaping content writer uses the best SEO practices to get you the results you’re looking for.
Will you be improving your lawn and landscape website in 2017? Then hire a landscaping content writer. I’m the Landscape Writer and I specialize in writing online content for lawn care, landscape and outdoor living companies.
To learn more about how I can help you create the perfect CTA to your lawn care or landscape company’s blogs, website pages and social media, call me today at 717-381-6719, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out my contact form.
You’ve taken the plunge and either designed your own website or hired a company to build a . You’ve recognized that having a website is vital to your marketing plan. Great! But there are some common pitfalls landscapers make that can keep your website from bringing you business. Here are the seven most common mistakes — avoiding these will help boost your rankings and improve your customer conversion rate.
Mistake #1: A confusing or unattractive website
Most potential clients make a decision on whether or not to consider you for a job within 10 seconds of coming to your site. If you’ve got a site design that’s dated, cluttered, or confusing, you’re much more likely to lose a customer than to gain one. Take a moment to review your site: does your navigation make sense? Are your colors and fonts aesthetically pleasing and easy to read? Does your site feel modern and fresh or does it feel dated and old?
Ideally, you want your website to feel modern, clean, and attractive. Using high-quality photos of your work, ensuring your navigation is clear and concise, and making sure all of your contact information is available for a customer will greatly increase your chances of customer conversion.
Mistake #2: A non-responsive website
As more and more people are viewing websites from mobile devices and tablets, it’s become more and more important to ensure your website is responsive. If you have a non-responsive website that means it doesn’t automatically resize to fit the screen your potential customer is viewing your site on. It makes it much harder for your customer to navigate your site, and this causes people to leave almost immediately. Make sure your site is responsive, so that you can draw in as many customers as possible.
Mistake #3: No calls to action
If your site doesn’t include any calls to action — instructions for potential customers to call you for an appointment, fill out a form for a free quote, etc. — you’re making it much harder to easily bring them to your business. Providing a phone number that’s click-to-call or a simple form that gives you their name, number, and email ensures that you’ll have that customer’s information, or that they have an easy way to contact you. You should ideally have a call to action linked to an offer on every page of your website. For example: “Call now for your FREE landscaping estimate: 123-456-7890” would tell a customer an immediate benefit of contacting you and give them a way to do so immediately.
Mistake #4: No pictures of your work
As a landscaper, a potential customer is searching for examples of previous projects to see the kind of quality of work you can provide. If you only use stock images on your site, and don’t have any examples of your work, there is little incentive for them to choose you. After all, you’re not providing them with any sort of foundation to believe you’ll give them what they’re looking for. Take a few minutes at the end of every job to snap a few high-quality digital photos, then make sure they’re optimized for your site so that they don’t take forever to load. You’ll give yourself an edge over your competition by compiling a .
Mistake #5: Non-obvious contact information
No customer is going to take the time to scour your website for contact information. If your contact information is not immediately obvious, that customer is going to leave your site and find someone who can be easily reached. Make sure you have a contact page or, at the very least, a prominently displayed phone number or contact form. This very simple detail can improve your customer conversion almost immediately!
Mistake #6: No testimonials or reviews
Customers rely increasingly on testimonials and reviews to help them choose which landscaper to pick for their residential or commercial needs. If your site has no testimonials or reviews, then your potential customer doesn’t have any reliable proof that your other customers are happy with your work. Whether you take reviews left on Facebook and include them on your site or encourage your current clients to leave you reviews in-office or through a form on your website, including positive testimonials throughout your site creates a sensation of trustworthiness. A customer is more likely to work with you if they feel they can trust you to be professional and do a satisfactory job.
Mistake #7: Not using Search Engine Optimization, or SEO
In the past, you used to be able to stuff your site with keywords to ensure you were highly ranked on Google. However, those times are over, and you need to ensure that your website is optimized for Google’s search engine. This can take a lot of work, but involves having descriptive and accurate page names, ensuring your NOB — Name of Business — is somewhere on every page, using meta tags and titles, and so much more.
These are the top 7 mistakes most landscaping websites make. If you can avoid these pitfalls, you can improve your chance of attracting potential customers to your website. And, more importantly, you’ll be able to increase your chances of actually generating leads and getting new customers for your business.
If you have more questions, or want to talk to a professional about how to best market your business, why not head over to and shoot us a message? We’re more than happy to help you improve your website and increase your earnings!
You can also check out some relevant blogs, such as and . Both of these blogs provide you with valuable information that can help you vastly improve your website and your general marketing plan. Good luck!
Check out this infograph of popular plants for arbors, pergolas and other outdoor structures. Urban Exteriors is from Australia–you can learn more on their website.
Over the next several months, I’m going to provide interviews, infographics and other media by some of the best in the landscape industry. These folks either do the marketing for their own companies or they’re consultants that help landscape companies grow and become more profitable.
Steven Cohen, founder of GreenMark Consulting Group is one such person. GreenMark Consulting Group works with landscape maintenance, design/build and snow services companies to build their operational systems for prosperity and long-term success.
WK: Tell me what GreenMark is and your role in the company?
SC: GreenMark Consulting Group is an industry specific consulting, coaching and advisory firm serving the landscape-snow industry. While our client base ranges in size from $350k to over $20 million, we take a very holistic approach with each client we interact with. The foundation of our mission is based on the quality of the relationship, not the quantity of relationships. If you are one of the what I call the 80% club, that is 80% of our industry is made up of contractor under one-million dollars looking to grow to the next level, then you are our ideal client.
My role at GreenMark is what I call lead consultant-chief innovation officer. My DNA says that I am a process architect and that must be the reason I enjoy fixing operational challenges and creating new innovative strategies. Since many landscape business owners struggle with not only operational infrastructure but also organizational culture, these tend to be one of my favorite areas of concentration. My philosophies are that company culture is a company’s stealth growth engine; it’s what sets winners apart from laggards. An ineffective culture explains many organizational failures.
WK: How does your company benefit landscaping and snow business companies? Are there other companies you work with?
SC: I believe that lies within our process. As I mentioned, our approach is very ‘holistic’. This means that the entire organization is considered not just one segment of the business. Using this approach, we begin our process with what is known as an Organizational Assessment. This is where we look at the entire organization as a whole and look closely at its operational and organizational mannerisms. What we are looking for specifically are ‘gaps’ within the organizations operating infrastructure. Our organizational assessment process is a systematic process to collect and evaluate information regarding an organization’s internal & external operational mannerisms. By assessing the internal-external structures and systems of the organization, this process provides information for us to determine capacities that need to be maintained, strengthened or fundamentally changed, in order for the organization to better achieve its vision, mission and values. This process fits well with all sized companies and if you were to look at a company like a builder building a house, this would be considered the foundation of the structure.
WK: Tell me a bit about your boot camps. How often do you hold them? What major cities do you go to? How have your clients benefitted from them?
SC: Our Landscape Business BootCamp was launched last year and we are gaining momentum on its success. The program is a highly interactive one-day program to help landscape-irrigation-snow contractors put the necessary building blocks in place to create a healthy, sustainable business environment. The Landscape Business BootCamp is for owners, managers and key team members of landscape-irrigation-snow businesses of all shapes and sizes that want to:
- Improve team performance
- Increase customer loyalty
- Expand market or service offering
- Grow revenue and profits
- Develop a company that runs itself
Attendees will walk away with the knowledge, strategies and specific tactics to help their companies become dominant forces in their markets. Attendees will learn how to develop, market, finance and manage a landscaping business—while avoiding the common mistakes that often result in failure. The BootCamp curriculum is based on GreenMark Consulting Group’s 4 Cores of Landscape Business Success which is…
- Guiding the business – mission statement, culture, organizational mindset
- Running the business – standard operating systems, process improvement
- Getting the business – branding, marketing & sales
- Doing the business – operations, service delivery model
The Real Secret Is our Landscape Business Success™ Toolkits. We have built over 125 DIY toolkits for contractors to easily apply our teaching methods to their business. In the BootCamp program, each core we discuss includes a Landscape Business Success Toolkit which serves as a blueprint to help attendees embark on important tasks, such as:
- Creating a vision, mission and values statement
- Creating support processes
- Defining a branding strategy
- Managing the customer experience.
Our Landscape Business BootCamp’s will be held in the fall of 2016 and winter of 2017 throughout the country both as stand-alone events and in conjunction with some state landscape associations. The feedback we have received from attendees has been very positive. The biggest impact they said they have received is it has enabled them to put things into perspective and approach business challenges more strategically and for greater success as the values we suggest are for attendees to focus on smaller wins which potentially lead to bigger victories.
WK: Please tell me why you choose the mission: Purpose, Passion and Pride?
SC: We call this the Power of the P’s and it stems as an organizational development tool that I used in my company many years ago. There are actually 6-Ps in the organizational development chain that we coach our clients on. The second are Processes, People, and Profits. My values are very people centric. What I’ve learned throughout my career is that in order to truly build a successful business you must surround yourself with complementary personalities that share the same rooted-values. That said the reasons I chose these are as follows:
–Purpose- Everyone in life needs to have a purpose. As this relates to our professional careers, TEAM member’s needs to show up every day with a purpose. That purpose needs to be centered, not only professionally, but personally. In my company and that of our client, we say that TEAM members have to show up with a purpose to contribute to the success of the company. Purpose has to drive them personally and professionally and drive their contributions at all levels. If a TEAM member is solely coming to work for the purpose of earning a ‘paycheck,’ he or she might not make the best TEAM member long-term.
-Passion- I do not think I’ve met one person in the landscape industry that has told me in 40 years being in the industry that they got into landscaping because of money. Most of the people I met got into the business out of a passion for the outdoors, working with their hands or the ability to be creative using materials such as plants, stone and water. Passion is the soul of what drives most landscapers and for that to work well in an organization that passion needs to be shared by all. If you just show up every day to do something you do not enjoy, you will probably will not be happy. If you show up every day and are driven by something you’re passionate about, you will probably go to work happy, go home happy and on Sunday, look forward to Monday morning.
-Pride- At the end of the day you must take pride in what you do. Taking pride in your work, is one of the best bits of advice I give to those interact with if you want to see your career or company soar to new heights. Many people work for the sake of working. In the landscape industry, you have to take pride every time you look back and say ‘we did that job’. The core values that build the pride mentality are
1- Your Name Is On It
- You Build a Reputation for Good Work
- Each Of Us Has a Role, Each Role Is Important
- Know What You Don’t Know
- Know What You Know
- Build Trust
- Stay True
Once you start to take pride in your work, even your work environment will start to change. You will feel happier at work and even help create a positive work environment. Money cannot be the only determining factor as to why you work. There must be bigger reasons for you to work in order to enjoy your work and that is why I believe the Power of the P’s are so important in all landscape business cultures.
WK: What else can you tell me about your business that will benefit landscapers and other owner/operators?
SC: Simply, I love what I do. In my role as a consultant and coach, it’s critical for me to understand my clients business like it is my own business. I really get to know my clients and their TEAM and learn about what makes them ‘tick.’
Process improvement within the landscape industry is not easy. We are such creature of habits, we very often resist the idea of change even when we say we’re ready to embrace it. I coined the term a few years ago that ‘it’s sometimes easier to wallow in misery than endure the pain to move ahead’. It’s so true. The reality is that there are far greater ‘good’ companies in our industry than ‘great’ companies’ if I want to leave a mark in the industry, it would be saying that I help good companies become GREAT!
Excellent marketing advice by Gabriel Faucher
Being an owner of a construction company can be quite a challenge. From getting your business’ name known to staying in the competition, there will be moments that you want to give up. Fortunately, your dreams are not over yet, having some successful construction companies is still very much achievable with the best marketing advice. If you need some guidance regarding marketing strategies for your business, this article will come in handy.
Making Sure You have a Good Brand
Your brand serves as an identity of your company. It would be the initial factor in acknowledging it as a source for making buildings and as a competition to others. Therefore, the branding phase is usually one of the critical steps you make in the business. If you already have picked a brand, it is best to review and test its possible impacts.
- Allocate Enough Budget
Creating a brand requires a budget. The budget mostly covers the logo and the first year of advertising. You can either make your own logo or hire a professional designer. The logo should mirror the expertise of the construction companies or at least be obvious in the companies’ slogan. In making your plans for the advertising, you have to investigate the budgeting process your competitors have undergone. Doing your research will help you decide how much you are willing to invest in the project.
- Hire Reliable Workforce
Another thing your brand requires is the best people. You would have to evaluate the people who will create your company’s success. They must be experts in their fields and are willing to face the challenges of the business. It is of particular importance to back your company with reputable names as they will appear on your ads and social media accounts. They play an essential role in the company’s reliability.
The brand is the first thing your customers will evaluate. It is essential to make your brand shine for the customers to keep coming back for your services.
Putting the Customer’s Needs First
Saying that the “customer is always right” is never enough to please them. The little things your company can do willcount as the most sincere actions. Your business should be able to do simple yet honest things to show how much you value your customers.
- Provide Simple yet Genuine Advice
One of the simplest tasks you can do is to offer a pamphlet of budget saving tips. The tips can include the ways to save a building’s electric energy or about how to maintain a healthily green environment. Your customers will appreciate that you are genuinely providing them comfort and quality services.
- Invite them to your Company’s Social Functions
Another task that you can do is to invite your former clients to your company’s dinner, party, or cocktail events. You can get updates on the quality of your services, as well as re-establish business partnerships. You can also be ensured of several future projects at these gatherings.
The little actions like an extra advice and friendly invitation will show your customers that you value the relationship you have with them. These measures can serve as your secret weapon that no other company in your field has.
Building businesses, such as construction companies, needs an extra effort and careful planning. These tips may not be the only marketing advice out there, but you will be delighted with the number of profits you can reap after following this guide. You’ll have a high chance of achieving your dreams to become a successful business person in the construction field, after all.
Author Bio: You can reach Gabriel Faucher through his Facebook page or email him at Gabrielfacher@gmail.com.
Even though I focus mostly on blogs and online marketing, it’s refreshing to get out from behind my laptop and see how actual lawn and landscape companies run their marketing campaigns.
CE Pontz Sons Inc. is located in Lancaster, Pa. They’ve been in business for many years—starting back in 1934. Since that time, they’ve evolved into premier outdoor living and water features experts in Central Pa.
Bobby Kenyon, Creative Solutions Guru at CE Pontz, shares how magazine ads have helped bring more prospects to his company’s door:
How often do you put out a magazine ad? Is it during those seasonal peak times–late winter/early spring, late spring for summer services and late summer for fall services?
BK: Typically March through May and again in the fall, September, October. The spring rush usually gets us booked pretty far into the summer. Then we do a second push to try to get us as far into fall/winter as we can.
Do you cover just Lancaster County magazines or do you extend to York, Dauphin, Berks and other Pa. counties?
BK: Lancaster County Magazine & Susquehanna Style. Susquehanna Style covers most of Central Pa. We like to keep our service area as local as possible but we do have clients in and service all surrounding counties including York, Dauphin, Lebanon, Berks and Chester. We will also begin advertising with FIG Lancaster starting in the fall.
How have magazine ads increased your business? Do you include a coupon with your ad? Do you think that helps?
BK: Our ads attempt to create a personality opposed to just offering a service and a discount. I try to make it just as much about who we are as what we create. We don’t really do much maintenance work which is typically a coupon type service. We do not offer coupons in our ads. Our main focus is designing and creating one of a kind Outdoor Living Spaces and Water Features. I believe coupons to be more of a maintenance service approach.
Who designs your ads? What input do you have to make them eye catching and encourage folks to make an appointment?
BK: I design all of our ads myself in house. I’ve been with Pontz for 11 years. Who better to tell our story than someone who knows our business inside and out? I know our crew and our quality of work better than anyone else, and that’s what I try to promote.
What do you want to add about magazine ads success in bringing more prospects to you?
BK: I honestly can’t say why they work, and I’m not sure they do for everyone. I think the fact that I’m telling the story I live everyday certainly helps. I also see a lot of companies that use the same ad time after time and never change anything. I think that can say a lot about a business. I design a new ad for every issue we advertise in. I’m sure this can be quite an expense for most companies. Especially ones who don’t have an employee dedicated to marketing in house. But it is something people definitely seem to notice, and it gets them to pick up the phone. I would say probably 80% of the calls we get for work come from someone who say they saw our ad in a magazine.
Now it’s your turn. What advertising or marketing campaign has worked best for your company? I would love to hear your story—especially if it’s word of mouth marketing. You don’t have to be my client to share your story. Just email me at email@example.com. You can learn more about CE Pontz Sons, Inc. on their website.