This article was updated on February 8, 2023
Even in a new year, chances are you, along with everyone else around the world are spending more time at home.
But as a silver lining to the pandemic, homeowners are now placing extra attention on their property which is excellent for the landscaping industry. In 2020, there was an increased focus on home maintenance among Nextdoor neighbors, and searches for lawn services and landscaping businesses were among the top.
If you have a landscaping company, now is the perfect time to share your services with your community to get more potential clients.
Read on for some landscaping advertising ideas to boost your small business over the coming year.
- Build or review your business plan
- Choose your niche to showcase landscaping service options
- Revitalize your branding
- Establish a savvy online presence
- Print and distribute paper goods
- Make a COVID ad action plan
1. Build or review your business plan
As a business owner, there is no shortage of things to do, and no shortage of advice on steps you can take. From getting business loans to procuring landscaping tools, your business plan should be the primary source of truth for how you start and develop your landscaping company *. The plan typically consists of the following sections:
- Executive summary
- Business Description
- Management Structure
- Market Size and Research Findings
Within this plan it's important to establish your business structure; will you operate as a sole proprietorship or an LLC (Limited Liability Company)? Discussing plans for business insurance, general liability insurance, and even commercial auto insurance may be included with financials. How you plan to scale, either through business loans or cash on hand may be important if you wish to present your plan to lenders. Documenting current assets or those you plan to acquire, such as lawn mower equipment or landscaping tools, will be helpful to refer back to later. The plan is a great opportunity to consider your current business position and roadmap a plan to get where you want to be.
2. Choose your niche to showcase landscaping service options
A good commercial landscaping business offers varying, often specialized, services. Stand out as a business owner by showcasing the unique service options you provide. Here are some examples:
- Commercial Landscaping
- Lawn maintenance
- Landscape design
- Irrigation installation
- Waste disposal
- Holiday decoration
A potential customer will appreciate the time you take to highlight the range of services you provide, particularly if it's a niche offering.
3. Revitalize your branding
Before you begin sending mass emails or handing out fliers, you might want to revisit your brand. This involves more than just thinking about your company name. A brand refers to the entire aesthetic, mission, and reach of your business. It's an essential component to any entrepreneurial venture.
Take a step back and imagine how you'd like your landscape company to appear, feel, and speak to potential customers this coming year. Why do you want to provide your services? Once you have the "why," you can shape your brand through excellent customer service for its strongest appeal.
A few key branding areas to focus on:
- Mottos and mission - A strong mission statement is step one for all branding. If you're brand new, choose a few core company values and write a simple paragraph on how they relate to your business. When revisiting an old mission, reevaluate in light of COVID and customer concerns at this time.
- Logo - In today's visual world, no business is complete without a logo. If you're just starting out, ask a local artist or creative friend to make your logo. For an expert touch, call on a graphic designer who will pair your mission and services with fitting aesthetic choices.
- Differentiation - What new lawn care services are you able to provide? What separates your landscaping business from another? Whether it's detailed customization or specialized trimming service, find something new to offer customers this year.
Once you have decided on the aesthetic, mission, and reach of your business, it is time to create some more brand awareness. Forming partnerships with other companies in the community will be useful for this. For example, those that are in need of lawn care services may also need plumbing services, electrician services, or pest control. All of those companies have their own existing customers, so they could refer even more people to your business.
4. Savvy online presence
While landscaping is all about being outside and around nature, to market your landscaping business, you'll have to dive into the digital world to create brand awareness.
Websites and email campaigns aren't just there for show. They drive an incredible amount of revenue for businesses. In fact, marketing giant McKinsey & Company found that email marketing campaigns were 40 times more effective than Facebook and Twitter combined in helping businesses gain new customers. A 2018 online consumer report discovered that 47% of internet users will visit a business's website before making a purchase.
By creating a unique online presence, you can keep clientele walking through the digital door.
What platforms are best for advertising?
Your business website
In this age, everyone has a website for something. To make your landscaping business stand out on the web, the trick is to make your site visually appealing and searchable.
If you want to boost your site's marketing appeal, like other larger landscaping companies have, include these key features:
- Visual gallery - Most customers will choose a landscaper based on their aesthetic and proven work. It's crucial to display your style and expertise across your website with high-quality media (before and after shots, for example).
- SEO-friendly features - When it comes to digital marketing, the search bar on Google, Bing, or DuckDuckGo is the ringmaster-about 46% of Google searches are for local businesses. To improve your search engine optimization, implement some SEO tricks on your website. For example, use target keywords for each page (i.e., "trimming in [your city]" or "[your city] gardening professionals").
- Reviews - Nothing shows credibility like five gold stars. Put your best reviews front and center to secure client trust. Better yet, create and link an online business review account (like Google Reviews) for visitors to easily see.
Nextdoor Business Page
As a landscaping business, your customers live in your local area. While a website has the potential for a broad reach, it doesn't help when someone in another state peruses your website and then asks you to help keep their yard pristine. What you need is an advertising channel that directly communicates with those in your region.
That's where Nextdoor comes in. Nextdoor is a place where local business owners like you can communicate with nearby customers - your neighbors. On Nextdoor, you can collect recommendations from neighbors, and neighbors can recommend your business to others who may be looking for the best landscaping businesses in the area.
To be that landscaping business your community recommends, all you need to do is create a free Business Page. From there, you can reach out to former or recurring customers and ask them for a recommendation on Nextdoor.
Once you're all set up, you can join in on the local dialogue by creating free Business Posts, or take your Nextdoor advertising strategy with a Nextdoor Ad.
On average, email marketing produces $38 for every $1 spent -now that's an incredibly effective advertiser.
The key to its continued success? Reach and purpose.
A few tips to create a repeatable, low-maintenance email marketing campaign include:
- Set up regular email blasts - If you've ever received a seasonal coupon via email, you've received an email blast. Blasts consist of general messages manually sent to a list of individual addresses. To keep customers engaged, send out a monthly notice with planned service promos and updates.
- Use lead nurturing - Blasts aren't the only email marketing method. Lead nurturing allows you to send a timed sequence of emails to new customer sign-ups. Keep fresh prospects coming back with a steady drip of information and offers.
- Use email marketing software - If you're typing email addresses into the send bar, stop right there. Email marketing software, like Constant Contact and Mailchimp, can give a serious helping hand when promoting your lawn care services. Most will provide mobile-friendly formatting, contact organization, and scheduling.
Whether you are trying to connect with a potential customer or a current customer, social media should play a key role in your marketing plan. Although some research shows that email marketing can be more effective than social media, these platforms should not be ignored. You can leverage social media through:
- Paid advertising - Optimize your brand and reach new audiences through these. Once an ad is created, you have control over the budget, and it is simple to implement. Target audiences that would want to learn more about your company.
- Images - Use your platforms to share images of the landscaping work you have done. Post high-quality images that showcase what a new client could get through your services.
- Organic posts - Share your business story and showcase your work by posting to your different social media channels.
Remember that customers can also be directed to your website from your social media platforms, so it is important to link your site and increase the company's overall visibility.
5. Print paper goods
There's something charming about receiving a catalog or handwritten note in the mail, an old-fashioned paper advertisement places your lawn care business right in the customer's hands. Whether at home or on the go, customers will remember your landscaping business with these tangible items.
The magic of paper handouts is how they leave customers with a permanent reminder of your lawn care business. For casual chats or networking events, business cards will save the day. To leave an air of professionalism, drop a card that includes your business name, logo and succinct service descriptors. For local fairs or landscaping conventions, distribute fliers to leave a physical reminder of your landscape business.
Remember that simple designs and visuals will catch customers' eyes.
Mail items are an excellent way to target clientele in specific areas (which is particularly useful for landscaping). Cost-effective and wide-reaching, direct mail marketing can help put a new local business on the map.
Some forms of mail advertising to help spread your services:
- Marriage mail - This service bundles and sends groups of paper advertisements across homes and is a great marketing strategy for a lawn care company. Your lawn care advertising may be mixed in with other vendors, but the overall cost is only three to five cents per home.
- Door hangers - If you have time, placing door hangers is a cheap way to catch the eyes of new customers. Make sure to pick out a neighborhood with high landscaping needs (hint: big yards).
- Letters or brochures - Want to share the heart & soul of your landscape business with customers? More wordy paper ads, like a brochure, will provide a detailed look at your landscaping services.
- Flyers or postcards - Lawn care flyers or lawn care postcards are a simple option to advertise your business door to door. Make sure you are picking a design that is easy to understand, describes your business well, and has an enticing call to action.
6. Make a COVID ad action plan
At the end of the day, the landscaping industry is about helping others. More than that, it involves servicing and beautifying a community.
COVID has rightfully heightened caution around in-person meetings or work. But with the proper procedures, you can ensure a safe work environment that'll keep your community protected. Both your landscaping customers and employees will be grateful and healthier for it.
As the new year approaches, take some time to create a COVID safety plan to mix in with your small business advertising messages. Consider these tips:
- Write out clear on-site safety measures - Research your state's pandemic safety guidelines and create a corresponding list of employee actions. Facial masks, social distancing, and proper hygiene are standard in almost every state.
- Track and test - Implement frequent testing to stay on top of any potential cases. On a daily basis, workers should take their temperatures before coming to work. One detected fever can prevent a dozen cases.
- Hold customer contracts - As a final step, have all clientele sign a COVID-safety agreement to ensure safety. Let them know this is a precaution to keep them healthy.
Grow your landscaping business in the new normal
COVID may have us feeling more isolated and homebound than ever. For businesses, that isolation can cause intense dips in revenue and customers.
But with these marketing tips (and some safety regulations), you can keep your landscaping business a vibrant and active part of the community. To stay in touch with your customer base, join local business networks like Nextdoor. You can connect with other local vendors to reach more customers in your community during this unique time.