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What would you do? - Jetwash cleaning biz

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Joejordan95

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Hey Everyone,

On recommendation from @Fasted I decided I'd try my own execution thread.


The Situation
My partner and I are looking to buy our first home and because of this we have spent the last few months in paid employment in dead end jobs that neither of us really like but we're doing it because if was stayed "self-employed" i.e doing deliveroo, just eat and amazon deliveries it would take 2 years worth of accounts to get the borrowing for a property vs 1-3 months bank statements in employment. (Plus the delivery jobs are dead end but are good for making money on the side)

We were looking to stay close to family but as time has gone by and we've realised that we cant afford round here as we'll max out our budget of £230K and likely not get a house we like but if we move to the next county over we can get the sort of house we want for £40- 30k less.

We've been looking to buy for the last 5 months but nothing yet, hence the decision above to look elsewhere.

During this time I got into the idea of Exterior Cleaning, so I did some research and did a quick analysis on avg sale price, costs, revenue, no. of customers and profit and had figures i'd be happy with. Looking at local competition and it seems to be the same as other offline business that fall into the cleaning category where they are older 1 man bands, haven't really built a brand per-se and I think with the right sort of marketing I could certainly out do the competition and provide a great service to since I've got excellent customer service skills and genuinely want to give people value for money

Next Tuesday 25/01/2022 I'll be pressure washing my first client's driveway who I found in like an hour of putting a post on facebook that I knocked up using canva and should be making £80 for what will be 2 hours worth of work based on the size of the area.

My next task is to really learn about marketing over the next few days while I complete this clients job and then look into shifting some flyers out.

I've got through a few threads like @Johnny boy & @IceCreamKid who are quite clearly inspiring and I've found a good thread on Direct Response Marketing by @MTF too.

Does anyone have any other recommendations for marketing sources I could learn from at or does anyone have any questions they want to ask about anything I'm doing then feel free and I'll do my best to answer them when possible.

Cheers
 
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B.Cotter

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I was just reading about a window cleaning business - hopefully you can take some things away from it - How to Start a Window Cleaning Business: Zero to $700k a Year
I actually just listened to that podcast yesterday. I follow it.

Listen to any of the service based business episodes and I’m sure you’ll find plenty of good advice and hints to skew value and outdo your competition. A lot of it has to do with just bringing your brand up to date with marketing and making the buying process as easy and convenient as possible; an idea discussed in many threads on this forum.
 

Joejordan95

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Joejordan95

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I actually just listened to that podcast yesterday. I follow it.

Listen to any of the service based business episodes and I’m sure you’ll find plenty of good advice and hints to skew value and outdo your competition. A lot of it has to do with just bringing your brand up to date with marketing and making the buying process as easy and convenient as possible; an idea discussed in many threads on this forum.
Thanks @B.Cotter I'll listen and see what I can use and apply.
 

Joejordan95

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Completed my first job yesterday! £80 for about 2.5 hours work. I gave the customer 50% off when I posted the ad on facebook but all in all, it was still good money for the time completed.

Came across some issues when providing the service though. Jetting moss off the driveway cases a lot of sludge which then flicks onto the windows and the door of the property. This meant I had to wrap up the cleaning by washing down the windows, upvc frames and the door.

Thinking about it I believe I should look to offer a Jet Washing Service with bolt on's such as:

- Window Cleaning
- UPVC Cleaning
- Moss removal

The lady I worked for received all of the above but I only advertised for Jet Washing and I believe this will make my offer more compelling so I can try higher prices.

On its own Jet washing doesn't sound like something you might pay a premium for for but if I market it as:

- Jet Washing
+
- Window Cleaning
- UPVC Cleaning
- Moss removal

Then its a bit more compelling compared to other providers in the area.

Leafletting are going to be the next thing I try to bring in business and will sign up to some websites if I can find any (still testing market)

If all goes well I'll make a website and have an online presence aswell.
 

Joejordan95

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So last night I suddenly had a feeling of being overwhelmed by the potential of trying to scale this "business" - All I could think of is that "I don't know this, I don't know that, how could I make it work?" Then I sat down and thought why am I thinking like this? I've only had 1 Job so this might not even pan out or I could end up finding other opportunities along the way and change direction entirely

I wrote out my thoughts as I find writing allows me to actually work through my thought process so I can actually see where my stumbling blocks are and overcome them.

During this process I noticed that the doubts and worries that were bleeding their way in to my thoughts are the same ones that stopped me committing to other ventures in the past. It's my comfort zone trying to stop me from progressing and stepping into the unknown.

I wrote down my whys so I could see my reasons for wanting to be an entrepreneur and that kicked me back into action.

I'm tired of being a wantrepreneur so fxck that. I'm going to be an entrepreneur.

I've got no skills but I'll learn, I don't need to worry about what I don't know, I just need to make
incremental steps, act, assess and adjust.

So far I made £80 but posting 2 ads on fb into a a few groups. Apart from renting the machine I've paid no costs and made profit.

Guess I'll keep trying that method but just make a facebook page, ,make some posts (practice copywriting) and assess then adjust.
 
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Lex DeVille

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So last night I suddenly had a feeling of being overwhelmed by the potential of trying to scale this "business" - All I could think of is that "I don't know this, I don't know that, how could I make it work?" Then I sat down and thought why am I thinking like this? I've only had 1 Job so this might not even pan out or I could end up finding other opportunities along the way and change direction entirely

I wrote out my thoughts as I find writing allows me to actually work through my thought process so I can actually see where my stumbling blocks are and overcome them.

During this process I noticed that the doubts and worries that were bleeding their way in to my thoughts are the same ones that stopped me committing to other ventures in the past. It's my comfort zone trying to stop me from progressing and stepping into the unknown.

I wrote down my whys so I could see my reasons for wanting to be an entrepreneur and that kicked me back into action.

I'm tired of being a wantrepreneur so fxck that. I'm going to be an entrepreneur.

I've got no skills but I'll learn, I don't need to worry about what I don't know, I just need to make
incremental steps, act, assess and adjust.

So far I made £80 but posting 2 ads on fb into a a few groups. Apart from renting the machine I've paid no costs and made profit.

Guess I'll keep trying that method but just make a facebook page, ,make some posts (practice copywriting) and assess then adjust.

You've made money. You have proof this can work. You know this business works for other people. Do not stop. F*ck your doubts, they are only there to trick you into quitting. Keep making solid deals for early wins. Grow your customer base one person at a time and keep learning as much as you can about this business. It will grow.
 

Joejordan95

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You've made money. You have proof this can work. You know this business works for other people. Do not stop. F*ck your doubts, they are only there to trick you into quitting. Keep making solid deals for early wins. Grow your customer base one person at a time and keep learning as much as you can about this business. It will grow.
Thanks for taking the time to respond man, it means ALOT! I've followed your copywriting challenge so quite stoked that you managed to find my thread (Guess changing the title worked thanks to your challenge ;) lol! )

I'm gonna just keep pushing, practice those skills, win customers provide some value for those customers, my self and maybe even the people on this forum.
 

Joejordan95

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So it’s Monday and I’ve not had a other clean since last Tuesday.

I’ve made a couple of posts on Facebook but not more luck yet.

My sister reminded me that she runs a pre-school and asked me to clean up for her which is a great opportunity to add some work to my portfolio.
I’m thinking of making a video and taking pictures etc but don’t know what I should do with the material for marketing after.

Any tips would be appreciated!

I’m going to bang posts up daily for the next week and practice my copy writing but if that doesn’t work, I’ll either look at FB/ Google Ads or leafleting.

Let’s hope this week is way more successful!
 
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Joejordan95

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Not much to update this last week or so. Focused on finding a new home and have made an offer that was accepted which is great!

Should be completing the pre school job early next week. Have a friend who's into graphic design and will design a logo for free to add to his portfolio.

I'll be having a tradesman sign printed so I can include this in pictures of my work online and also advertise while I'm cleaning so people passing by can see.

Still need to look into online advertising though.

will focus on customers after getting this job done
 

Joejordan95

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Softwashing roofs could be something you can add to your arsenal
Hey @VinnieJones Youre very right - I've been looking at that and seems like big money starting at like minimum £400-500 for a standard roof. Once I'm able to get this off the ground and slide into this market I'll probably do a course. at the moment It's just trying to find my feet with getting customers!

Anyway its nice to speak to you man, I hope you're well!
 
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Joejordan95

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Pre school job completed, another job completed and a new customer booked in for 2 weeks time, not really advertised other than using a lead gen service called bark.com

Van has bene purchased to make it easier for hauling tools and look more professional gonna get some pols made up so its more appealing when people walk by and see me clean, playing up to the professional image.

Been fun so far. Don't get me wrong I get hella nervous when I'm out to quote but always feel a little rush when I can tell someone is going to pick me. Started thinking about offering gutter clearing services the other day and then at the new customers house I came across an opportunity to enquire about the gutters so going to sell that service to him.

Almost like when you set a direction the opportunities come to you. lets see where it all goes
 

Joejordan95

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Job tomorrow, should make me £200 for the day.

Bought some new tools:
- 1000mm lance for my pressure washer (Stops me bending over getting a bad back)
- 14" Flat surface cleaner ( allows me to cleaner bigger areas in less time)

Originally the job tomorrow was to clean just the patio for £140 but I called emailed the guy and upsold him gutter clearing for £60.

I've been sticking to using bark.com to find leads for this business but I have noticed that I'm not putting as much effort in as I could do.

I had an opportunity come my way where 2 x window cleaners are offering to hand out my cards to their customers which could be great so need to get that done as could bring in business so Going to focus my effort on getting some card made up so they can hand them out for me.

Things I've noticed in this business (in a pressure washing group on fb) are that some guys in the pressure washing business have so much capital tied up in their equipment.

Brand new vans (one guy has a sports version)
complete van fit outs
slightly below average websites
a lot complain that fb ads dont work ( a small few say they work great)

Within the above lies some opportunity.


Other thoughts I've had about pressure washing so far is that it is time consuming so fitting in multiple jobs in a day can be difficult, so to in crease my earnings I'd have to add other services e.g window cleaning, gutter clearing on each job.

Just going to keep pushing along to keep momentum up for the time being as my partner and I will be moving to a new county, so won't really build this as a business just yet till I can feel more established in the new place where I can really get going
 

NinjaBartender

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Joejordan95

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This video might be of interest - Guy started out with pressure washing and then switched to soft wash (cleaning roofs etc with chemicals as opposed to pressure). Quite interesting and might help with ideas.

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H99wDmpnE_g&ab_channel=UpFlip
thanks! i'll give that a watch. I'm always skepical of these sort of youtube videos for some reason, just hate the style of video and I always end thinking these vids are fake or at least exaggerated but lemme take of my skeptical hat lol

Billing £120,000 a month is impressive though I wouldn't say no that at all
 

NinjaBartender

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I understand what you mean. Of course there is an element of clickbait, however I think there is value in just seeing what other people do and what works in other countries.
 

Joejordan95

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Got paid for the job I completed yesterday so thats £200 in the bank working from 09:00-14:00.

I've updated my bark profile - and now advertise my services as a bundle and detail the minimum price. I feel this is making it easier for clients to pick who they'll choose. With other service providers on that website, they'll have to wait till the cleaner comes out to get quoted where as they see a price with mine that states "From £XXX.XX".

I've also added gutter clearing to my services. Previously, I would only get around 2 leads per day as my only service was pressure washing but having added gutter clearing and some other service, It's estimated I'll receive 10 a day.


I've also seen that some customers use the website to just get quotes and inevitably they are serious buyers and therefore don't respond. I've got 7 customers that never responded, so there in pending. I'm going to take their details down and offer them a discount if they book in soon.

Also bought the Cashvertising book, in order to learn about advertising as this can only get better if I take control and get my own customers rather than wating for leads to come to me through a 3rd party site.

Taking it one step a time, not focusing on revenue or anything just trying to keep getting the next customer
 
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Joejordan95

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I understand what you mean. Of course there is an element of clickbait, however I think there is value in just seeing what other people do and what works in other countries.
absolutely man, last few weeks i've come to realise how much I imprint my views onto the world when I should keep an open mind and try and learn more
 

Daniel.

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Congrats on taking action!

Generally speaking, Bark attracts cheaper clients but it's okay, you're getting paid to learn so keep it going.

Here are a few recommendations:
- Don't be the cheapest option! Look at what you can do better than your competition - is it provide better customer service? Is it a high-percentage "On-Time Rate", Money-Back Guarantee? etc (Read "Creating Competitive Advantage" by Jaynie Smith) Drill that message on your marketing.

- Try different marketing platforms, I have had success running my own Google Ads campaign but that's a whole beast in itself. I strictly only advertise on Google, nothing else. Try boots on the ground, bandit signs, etc if your marketing budget is low. You can talk to @Andy Black regarding Ads, he knows much more than I.

- Don't compare yourself to others, Social Media is a highlight reel - you don't see the struggle of everyday operations. You see some with awesome rigs and trailers and it makes you feel like you're behind - don't worry about them, you worry about acquiring more customers and providing the best service possible.

- Pick up your phone (you'll be surprised at how easy it is to beat out the competition simply by picking up your phone).

- Change your mindset, THIS IS A LUXURY SERVICE. Drill it into your mind that you're a CUSTOMER SERVICE business that just so happens to provide cleaning services. READ THIS AGAIN.

- Quit adding services like Roof Cleaning, you're going to overwhelm yourself. Get good at what you're doing now. You believe that adding more services will increase your average ticket but you're only working harder - your goal should be to raise the prices of the current services you provide.

- There will be days that go to shit, but keep going and remember that no one is going to save you.
 
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Joejordan95

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Ordered 1000 leaflets 2 days ago. Ill be giving 200 each to 2x window cleaners. Because they already have a huge round of customers a recommendation for me from them should hold a lot of weight and bring in some new business (I hope lol).

Ill take the remaining 600 and post them myself in some of the nice looking neighborhoods and see how this turns out haven't had a job for a lil while and want to keep this momentum building
 

Joejordan95

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A whole month since my last post.

Update:
2 jobs completed & 1 due tomorrow. This has all been done in the last 8 days so that'll £616 for roughly 13 hours work after tomorrows job is complete.

My gf and I, now officially own our own home as of 03/05/2022. Not bad considering it was about 2 years ago we decided to save up and buy one.

This month I'll be stepping back from cleaning just so I can dedicate as much time to fixing the house up as possible then I can dedicate my focus to building the business rather than just using it to tick over.

I look forward to giving you guys another update soon
 
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Joejordan95

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Sooooo here we go again! All jobs mentioned above completed and now I've got 3 more booked in 22/05, 24/05 and 31/05.

22/05 job is just a softwash (Cleaning using chemicals). I'm making £180 for that job and I reckon about 2/3 hours work with the chemicals sitting on the patio for most of that time.

24/05 This is a driveway and patio clean with the driveway to be sealed a few days later. (£750)

31/05 This is a driveway clean with the driveway to be sealed a few days later. (£276)


In total £1206 earned. with roughly £1000 profit.

MY partner and I are still currently fixing the house ourselves up, so i feel like im going full tilt. I'm happy to say i've never worked this hard but I know I have more.

I've not really applied much pressure to this business in comparison to what I could really do but as soon as we've properly moved in, I want to go in hard.

Everytime I need a reminder of whats possible I return to @Johnny boy 's thread. He gave me some advice weeks ago but not put it into to practice yet but I will do.

I've noticed more of my customers have been either business owners or have just been elderly ex professional couples (this gives me an idea of who I should focus my efforts on).

Ii still need to think of a way to turn this business into recurring revenue instead of 1- off payments.

Simplest way I believe I could do this, would be to offer "Exterior Cleaning Services" rather than just pressure washing and the customers pays a monthly DD and receives, monthly window cleaning, 1 pressure washing per year, 2 x gutter cleans etc

I need to research more but I don't believe this is being offered by other exterior cleaning companies

Maybe could sign them up under packages like "Silver, Gold, Platinum" and by doing this , they can keep the value of their home and maintain it

I can use the jetwashing service as an intro, conduct a survey and tell them how much they could save if they sign up to a recurring package rather than a 1 off service

Obviously, I'll need to talk to my customers but I'd like your input.


If you have any other idea, drop them here because someone might drop some gems
 

Johnny boy

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Amazon didn't start a book selling business because they wanted to sell books. They wanted to sell stuff online and decided books was the best vertical to attack.

Likewise as far as home services go, we are attacking the lawn care vertical because we can scale it by itself and then use it as the backbone to eventually launch into other services that CAN be 1-off jobs.

If amazon started off trying to sell lighting fixtures, or start a shipping company, etc. right out of the gate, it would've been a lot harder.

I look at it sorta like that. You're doing stuff with a low barrier to entry but tough scalability without any demand for recurring services. We don't force demand, people need us to cut their grass consistently. I don't think people are begging for recurring pressure washing quite as much.

To combat this scheduling issue you'll need to have an expert team of appointment schedulers and streamlined quoting process and high profit margin to deal with unreliable scheduling. You'll need to be making 2-3 times as much so when you have slow days or weeks you don't become unprofitable.

I would say you'd need to be able to bring in over a thousand dollars from 1-2 people working per day minimum in order to combat the unreliable scheduling that comes with one-time jobs.

Always be looking for the problem and how it needs to be solved, and don't be afraid to think big.
 

Joejordan95

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Amazon didn't start a book selling business because they wanted to sell books. They wanted to sell stuff online and decided books was the best vertical to attack.

Likewise as far as home services go, we are attacking the lawn care vertical because we can scale it by itself and then use it as the backbone to eventually launch into other services that CAN be 1-off jobs.

If amazon started off trying to sell lighting fixtures, or start a shipping company, etc. right out of the gate, it would've been a lot harder.

I look at it sorta like that. You're doing stuff with a low barrier to entry but tough scalability without any demand for recurring services. We don't force demand, people need us to cut their grass consistently. I don't think people are begging for recurring pressure washing quite as much.

To combat this scheduling issue you'll need to have an expert team of appointment schedulers and streamlined quoting process and high profit margin to deal with unreliable scheduling. You'll need to be making 2-3 times as much so when you have slow days or weeks you don't become unprofitable.

I would say you'd need to be able to bring in over a thousand dollars from 1-2 people working per day minimum in order to combat the unreliable scheduling that comes with one-time jobs.

Always be looking for the problem and how it needs to be solved, and don't be afraid to think big.
Hey Johnny,

Thank you for offering your opinion because I do value what you say.

There's certainly a low barrier to entry but I suppose I'm in the situation where I'm trying to put together a rough 'plan' of how I could scale it up.

You just said something really interesting, which was "don't be afraid to think big" I think thats actually a skill I've yet to acquire man. I've got to learn how to think big but I've never had to really do that before or execute on it.


I think I was just trying to start with anything and just gravitated towards pressure washing now I'm in a situation where I'm now in uncharted waters. I'm not packing this in yet because well i've not reallllly started and there must be a way forward i just don't know where, or how to look it to start figuring out the next step bro


Any tips on your thinking process if you encountered a similar issue in my place?
 
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Johnny boy

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Hey Johnny,

Thank you for offering your opinion because I do value what you say.

There's certainly a low barrier to entry but I suppose I'm in the situation where I'm trying to put together a rough 'plan' of how I could scale it up.

You just said something really interesting, which was "don't be afraid to think big" I think thats actually a skill I've yet to acquire man. I've got to learn how to think big but I've never had to really do that before or execute on it.


I think I was just trying to start with anything and just gravitated towards pressure washing now I'm in a situation where I'm now in uncharted waters. I'm not packing this in yet because well i've not reallllly started and there must be a way forward i just don't know where, or how to look it to start figuring out the next step bro


Any tips on your thinking process if you encountered a similar issue in my place?

Go where the demand is. Give people what they can’t get. People in your area all need something. There’s things that people probably need a million bucks worth of if you added up all the people that wanted it in that area.

Then it’s just a logistical problem in order to deliver it to people
 

Joejordan95

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Go where the demand is. Give people what they can’t get. People in your area all need something. There’s things that people probably need a million bucks worth of if you added up all the people that wanted it in that area.

Then it’s just a logistical problem in order to deliver it to people
True that bro. I'll get it figured out soon enough
Problem solving is the name of the game.


Luckily for me, I just had my manager at work refuse to give me some vacation because of "service levels".

Another f*ck this moment for me no that I needed anymore.

Cant stand other people deciding whether or not I should have time off lol motherf*ckers
 

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