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Good marketing = better sleep

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Johnny boy

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When my lawn care company had about 45 people on recurring service contracts and I did the work myself, we had a moderate number of complaints.

Now that I have almost 90 contracts, with employees handling them, we get a LOT more complaints.

When our customer acquisition came from Craigslist and a google business page, new customers were a little harder to come by. We had to take on more jobs, at a lower price, and keep every customer happy even if they were unreasonable.

Now that our customer acquisition is scalable and our ROAS is much better, I can sleep a little better at night. Now, unreasonable customers get replaced. We take on only the most profitable jobs. Customer complaints come in through a service rep and 80% of them never get to me. They just get stored as a politely written note for the crew to address on our dispatching software.

Now, I don’t even know the people we’re signing up. It’s a name, some payment info, a list of services from what they discussed with our salesperson, a time allocation rating given based on their monthly payment, and then they go on the schedule for one of the crews. The crew does the work and sees how long they’re supposed to be there based on how much they pay, complaints come in through the customer service rep and get addressed at the next visit, and we replace anyone who’s rude. (The reason we replace anyone who’s rude is because with any concern about quality, we address it with “we’ll absolutely fix that”. And the crew comes back to fix that issue. If that’s not good enough, then you’re dealing with an a**hole. Nobody reasonable would ever get mad that you’re gonna come right back and fix something...)

If your business is bad at getting tons of new customers, you are a slave to unreasonable people. Out of any group of people, there are good people, average people, and assholes. There will always be plenty of each type. If your ability to attract customers for a low cost is poor, you have to please the assholes. That’s not how business should go. The assholes should get the boot and you only deal with nice, pleasant, profitable customers. Almost all problems in a business can be easily fixed if you have a reliable and efficient way to get tons of new customers. That’s the name of the game.

A bad marketing system will make you act out of scarcity. You’ll never be able to put your foot down since you know taking care of problem customers is still the best option because there’s no one else to replace them. It’ll cause you to hate what you do, focus on negativity often, increase problems with employees, etc. It’s a lose-lose. It’s like the dating options for a guy who’s ugly and out of shape, it’s probably not even worth it.



——————
On a side note, I moved in to a new place. If anyone here is in the Seattle area (Lake steilacoom to be specific), come by the new crib and let’s grill some steaks.


FF1A3191-6645-4724-A40C-E32D694BFD79.jpeg
 

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Andy Black

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When my lawn care company had about 45 people on recurring service contracts and I did the work myself, we had a moderate number of complaints.

Now that I have almost 90 contracts, with employees handling them, we get a LOT more complaints.

When our customer acquisition came from Craigslist and a google business page, new customers were a little harder to come by. We had to take on more jobs, at a lower price, and keep every customer happy even if they were unreasonable.

Now that our customer acquisition is scalable and our ROAS is much better, I can sleep a little better at night. Now, unreasonable customers get replaced. We take on only the most profitable jobs. Customer complaints come in through a service rep and 80% of them never get to me. They just get stored as a politely written note for the crew to address on our dispatching software.

Now, I don’t even know the people we’re signing up. It’s a name, some payment info, a list of services from what they discussed with our salesperson, a time allocation rating given based on their monthly payment, and then they go on the schedule for one of the crews. The crew does the work and sees how long they’re supposed to be there based on how much they pay, complaints come in through the customer service rep and get addressed at the next visit, and we replace anyone who’s rude. (The reason we replace anyone who’s rude is because with any concern about quality, we address it with “we’ll absolutely fix that”. And the crew comes back to fix that issue. If that’s not good enough, then you’re dealing with an a**hole. Nobody reasonable would ever get mad that you’re gonna come right back and fix something...)

If your business is bad at getting tons of new customers, you are a slave to unreasonable people. Out of any group of people, there are good people, average people, and assholes. There will always be plenty of each type. If your ability to attract customers for a low cost is poor, you have to please the assholes. That’s not how business should go. The assholes should get the boot and you only deal with nice, pleasant, profitable customers. Almost all problems in a business can be easily fixed if you have a reliable and efficient way to get tons of new customers. That’s the name of the game.

A bad marketing system will make you act out of scarcity. You’ll never be able to put your foot down since you know taking care of problem customers is still the best option because there’s no one else to replace them. It’ll cause you to hate what you do, focus on negativity often, increase problems with employees, etc. It’s a lose-lose. It’s like the dating options for a guy who’s ugly and out of shape, it’s probably not even worth it.



——————
On a side note, I moved in to a new place. If anyone here is in the Seattle area (Lake steilacoom to be specific), come by the new crib and let’s grill some steaks.


View attachment 34070
Very nice. I know quite a few freelancers who now hate what they do but don’t realise it’s because of the clients they end up having to take on to keep their head above water.

Sounds like you have a nice system working for you there @Johnny boy. Thanks for sharing your insights.
 

Ocean Man

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How does next week sound? I’ll buy the steaks if you can grill them. I can’t grill for shit.
 

Walter Hay

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A very valuable lesson in this thread. When operating my importing and franchising business before franchising it I quickly discovered that there were customers that I did not want to deal with.

They showed their true colors at the first contact. Unpleasant attitude, demanding and finding fault where there was none. I didn't give them a price list but quoted a price way above what I would charge others. That was the easiest way to rid myself of customers that I didn't want.

When I began selling franchises, that was one of the first lessons I taught my new franchisees. Why run a business that is causing you aggravation?

Incidentally, for the same reason I didn't accept every applicant wanting to buy a franchise.

As @Johnny boy has found, if you are not desperate for business you can be choosy.

Walter
 

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