Are you worried that your landscape company has become stagnant? Are you seeing a decline in new growth or has it tapered off completely? If so, then it might be time to refresh your business with some new approaches.
With the incorporation of some marketing tips for your landscape business, you can get your business revitalized in a way that will keep you moving onward and upward.
At Include Software, we’ve gone through many of these processes ourselves and worked closely with hundreds of landscape companies that have used these tactics to push through to the next level of revenue.
We understand that in order to keep the business vibrant and growing that it’s important to be constantly looking at the value of making smart marketing changes. That’s why we’ve rounded up 9 of our best marketing tips for landscapers that we think will help you as much as they’ve helped us and the clients we work with regularly.
1. Positioning Your Brand Uniquely and Purposefully
How do you position your brand for the clientele that you serve? Are you trying to be all things to all people or have you really refined your focus? These are important questions to ask as you determine whether you’re positioning your company in the best possible way.
If you are trying to be all things to all people, then it may be diluting down what makes you different when it comes to your marketplace. In the highly competitive landscape market, it’s important that you stand out, and how you are positioned will make all the difference.
Oftentimes, when a landscape business is just starting out, they take on any and every job they can to grow the business. But there reaches a time when you need to start looking at how certain segments of job services for certain clientele are more lucrative than others.
You may need to really narrow down what it is that you’re offering and who you’re offering it to. Landscape business software can give you the power to know exactly which services are most profitable and which ones might need to be dropped. Sometimes you need to take a step backward in order to take two forward.
2. Messaging Refinement
If you were to go online right now and look at websites for 20 different landscape companies, chosen at random, we’d bet that a good majority of them would all say the same thing. It can be hard for a landscape company to stand out when the messaging is virtually the same across the board.
Your messaging should not only be unique but it should be able to tell the customer exactly what you do and who you serve. Does your messaging speak to the internal problems of your clients? In other words, a potential customer should be able to gather right away from your messaging how you can solve their problems.
When you do this, you need to incorporate a heavy dose of empathy and just a small amount of authority. You want the customer to know that you understand and empathize with their problems but you also want to set your company up with enough authority to let them know you’re capable of solving them.
It’s important that your messaging is client-focused instead of being heavily service-focused, as many landscape companies are. When you talk too much about your company it can be a turn-off. What customers really want to know is how you’ll meet their specific needs.
This is something we understand a lot about because we’re in the process of refining our messaging ourselves. As you interact with Include Software in the future, you may notice tweaks and changes to our messaging in our effort to ensure we’ve refined it to where we want it to be.
3. Leveraging Professional Photo and Video
There is a big difference between using photos and videos you took yourself versus professional photography and videography—and your website visitors will notice that difference. However, it’s not just the quality of the photos that matters but also how you leverage their use. Going back to the value of positioning your company properly, are your photos reflecting the type of client that you want to go after? For instance, if you’d really like to get more design/build projects such as kitchen and patios, then that’s what your pictures should show.
It’s also valuable to incorporate photos that show people using the space, not just the space itself. And if you can convey internal needs or the way in which your landscaping services can solve problems, then it’s even more powerful. This may be particularly useful if you serve a commercial market. Commercial property managers are accustomed to having tenants complaining that the property is a mess. If your images can convey a solution to remedying that frustration, it’s going to go a long way.
In terms of other photo and video marketing tips for landscapers, updating your photography regularly is another important consideration. It should be updated at least once a year, otherwise, you do risk looking stagnant. After all, some of your website visitors will come back to your website multiple times over a long period of time and if you never update your photos, it will look as though you never do anything new.
You should also think about where you’ll use the photos and video that you have taken. Don’t just throw them in a portfolio. Think about how you can get the maximum mileage out of them. They can be used on multiple platforms, including social media outlets, for repeated use. Be intentional about getting the most out of your investment in professional photography and videography.
At Include Software, we’ve started adding some professional video to our website and will be adding more in the future. The feedback that we’ve gotten from customers has been very positive. That’s one of the reasons that we understand the value in taking these steps.
4. Focusing on Website Redesign and SEO
Your website is your virtual front door. You can be sure that a client who is considering your services will go to your website before they ever call your company or engage with your sales team. That makes it incredibly important that it does not look dated and that it does not look like every other landscape company website they’ve come across.
In order to achieve this, you should aim to redesign your website every four to five years. Include Software went through a major overhaul and continues to make improvements on a regular basis.
Of course, there’s more to a website redesign than just looks. You must also be thinking about search engine optimization (SEO). Landscape companies, who naturally have an eye for design, are notorious for making the website design look better but not addressing the SEO perspective.
Unfortunately, a visual redesign is not enough. Details such as what kind of content your website produces or even what you name your pages can make a huge difference in how your website will rank on search engines. In other words, you could have a visually beautiful website but if it’s not optimized for search engines, it may not get seen. If your company is stagnant, it may just be a matter of not being readily found on the internet. A website redesign with attention paid to SEO could be a solution.
5. Incorporating Inbound Marketing
If you’re like a lot of landscape companies then you may be doing outbound marketing. That means promoting your business with brochures, promotions, and getting your message to as many people as you possibly can.
The key problem with outbound marketing is that you’re hoping to put your information in front of someone on the slim chance that they’re actually looking for the services you offer at that given time. If you’re doing that, you’re likely spending a lot of money on “interruption”.
In the last 15 years, inbound marketing has become incredibly popular. It’s different in that it’s meeting the buyer on their terms, whether they’re only at the beginning stage and looking to become more aware of what’s out there or if they’ve made it all the way to the decision stage and are actually ready to make choices.
Buyers turn to the internet to do their research by typing in questions to seek out solutions to their problems. If you’re not taking advantage of this with the use of inbound marketing, then you’re missing a huge opportunity.
Landscape companies that wind up getting stagnant in terms of their marketing efforts are typically relying on traditional methods like word of mouth, trade shows, or printed materials. But in order to really sustain growth, they need to improve their website using inbound marketing which will attract highly motivated people and to help those prospects take a journey from casual interest to a motivated buyer.
6. Boosting Your Customer Referral Program
While landscape companies are very apt to say “we get a lot of customers via word of mouth,” that’s only the tip of the iceberg. Companies that have a really great referral program tend to attract even more referrals. There’s no question that word of mouth is a great way to get leads but you have even more people attracting new customers for you if they’re incentivized to do so.
How much should you plan to give to incentivize customers to attract referrals? You should plan to give out at least $50. Anything less and it’s just not that motivating. But if you send them $100 check for referring a new customer, that’s compelling.
On the flipside, giving a credit toward spending money on your company’s services can be seen as self-serving. Plan to give them a gift card that you know would get used or opt for cash.
7. Rebranding and Wrapping your Vehicles
Over time, logos get dated. Everything from your color scheme to your logo image may need an update. Whether it’s started to look like every other landscaper on the block or it’s just looking outdated, updating your logo and going as far as wrapping your vehicles can really give you a fresh look.
Suddenly people within your community may start noticing your vehicles because they look brand-new. You may have driven through a neighborhood dozens of times but suddenly you stand out. If you feel as though your company is becoming stagnant, this is a great way to liven things up.
Of course, you want it to be tastefully noticeable. Many companies are notorious for adding a little logo on their side doors—and that’s it. It may never even get seen. There are a lot of areas on landscape trucks to add branding, including even the tailgates.
8. Creating Contextualized Email Campaigns
The first question to ask if you’re doing an email campaign is: What value is this to the recipient? If you aren’t providing them with something valuable, they will unsubscribe, and then you’ve lost them on that list forever.
Promotions may seem like valuable content to you, but you must be careful with them. To the customer, it might seem gimmicky or like a sales tactic, and they may unsubscribe if you do them too often. A promotion should always be secondary to your main content.
While you may also be tempted to use an emailed newsletter to talk about your employees or brag about your company, every other company on your customers’ list of emails is doing this too. Instead, you want to focus on customizing your content.
While it will take extra work, you can pull segmented lists of people from your landscape business software that are using a very specific list of services. You can then target these specific groups with content that will be most pertinent to them.
Of the other important marketing tips for landscapers is the value of customization. Any good email marketing platform will have the ability to add personalized tokens such as the person’s first name or even their company name. You could even use your notes on file for the client to insert specific problems that they’re facing and potential solutions.
Though it’s a lot more time consuming, it’s also a lot more likely to boost your revenue than a standard email campaign that uses the same newsletter to address clients across the board.
9. Targeting Your Social Media Advertising
Another way to meet customers where they’re at instead of just blasting the same thing out to everyone is with targeted social media advertising. With Facebook, in particular, you can do a tremendous amount of targeting. You can filter by all types of demographics: homeowners, location, house value, etc. That means that you can have different ads for different audiences, drastically increasing your chance of being effective.
Facebook also allows you to upload an email list that you already have and create a “Lookalike Audience” of just that segmented population. Custom audiences can also be created with LinkedIn for commercial landscape prospecting.
This laser focus of your target audience will allow you to contextualize your ad in a way that makes it purposeful to the audience.
Let Landscape Business Software Help You Stay Fresh
There’s no question that a lot of these marketing tips for a landscaping business can feel like a lot of work. But staying on top of your customers’ wants and needs and creating a targeted approach to communicating with them can be simplified with the use of landscaping business software that will allow you to track customer data and pull it up at any time.
You can even create reminders for yourself that will pop up at a designated time in the future. By utilizing these tools you’ll be able to take a highly customized approach to your marketing efforts that will leave clients (and prospective clients) feeling as though you truly care. This could make a world of difference when it comes to remaining relevant rather than going stale.
If you’re ready to refresh your business or have more questions that we can help with, then let’s explore and see what Asset can do for your landscape company.