Q & A with Bobby Kenyon of CE Pontz Sons Inc.


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 wendy@landscapewriter.com. You can learn more about  CE Pontz Sons, Inc. on their website.

Bobby Kenyon of CE Pontz Sons Inc.
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