Franklin, MA 02038
By: Maione Landscapes
As we’ve grown our little business, we’ve noticed some common themes seem to pop up as we on-board more and more clients. We frequently hear things like “I called so&so and never heard back” or “They said they would help me but that was weeks ago” or “They’re okay, I just never really know when they will show up”. Things like these perplex the average business person, after all, acquiring customers is the most expensive thing that we do! (aside from hiring employees). I think it stems from the point that Michael Gerber was conveying in his book, The E-Myth Revisited, that most people who are self-employed are great at their trade, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they are skilled also at running a business. The work most landscapers do is not overly technical, to the point where most home-owners do it themselves! So in reality, what most people who are in “need” of landscaping services are actually looking for, is a consistent, convenient, and affordable way to keep up their property. That said, here are a few key factors to consider when hiring a landscaping company.
As I stated before, 90% of landscapers are capable of producing satisfactory results, on par with their competitors. The problem, oftentimes, is showing up; on-time, every time. There is so much work to be done in this industry that it is easy to get overwhelmed if you don’t have systems and processes in place to manage clients effectively. Here are a few questions to ask yourself:
Did they reply in a timely manner to your inquiry?
Were they able to come out quickly to assess?
Did they text a reminder when they were on their way?
As a general rule, the first impression is the highest level of professionalism that you will see from an individual or company, if you’re not pleased now, you very likely won’t be in the future.
This is something that is most easily measured after the fact, but there are indicators you can assess prior to hiring.
How does their brand look to you?
This one may seem odd at first glance, but there’s a lot to it. Many landscape companies do not take the time or effort to create a meaningful, outward appearance. Do you see a lot of yard signs of this company? Trucks with the logo? Crew members with matching shirts? Companies that invest the time and money in ensuring that prospective customers see them in a good light, will undoubtedly do everything they can to ensure each customer is consistently happy with their service.
Do they have good reviews?
This is true of any criterion you are looking for, but reviews are always the best way to confirm with your peers what you’re getting into. Likely, the more positive reviews, the more consistent they have been with others, and the same should be true for you.
Do they utilize technology?
Maybe you’re new-school, like texting, emailing, and surfing the web while screening most of the phone calls that come in from unknown numbers. Hiring an old-school, pencil, and paper, landline kind of contractor may not be the best fit.
Do they take credit cards?
You know you like those airline miles. Many contractors are still looking for cash or check at the door at the time of service, which may not be the most convenient option for many working people.
Do they have automated service reminders?
This may not seem like something you need, but it’s definitely something you can’t go back from once you’ve had it. Planning your outdoor life accordingly is much easier when you know when your service is happening in the yard.
These are just a few ideas on how to find the cream of the crop when it comes to landscaping companies and other contractors. They are out there, if you simply ask a few questions, it will be easy to discern the best from the rest.