Putting some time and effort into renewing your existing customer base is of the utmost importance in the lawn and landscape business. Because it is such a hyper competitive market it's very easy to lose customers to your competitors. Not only do you need to consider how to build a sense of loyalty in regards to your brand, you also need to build a strategy directly into your daily "off season" operations. Follow these very "easy to implement" steps to secure your customers loyalty AND to build a prepayment cash flow that will get you through the winter.
1. Write a compelling “thank you letter.” You need something that starts with “Dear Customer, thank you for your business” and finishes with “I want to thank you again for your business.” In between you should acknowledge some of the challenges you faced, some of the successes you pulled off and some of the improvements you’ve got planned for the following year. Make it personal and try to appeal to their sense of loyalty.
2. Have a renewal contest and stagger it with deadlines. Do something creative like giveaway a snow blower as a grand prize and follow it up with two or three “second place” prizes such as free service for the year or a fifty dollar gift certificate to a local restaurant. Make sure you set deadline for entry into the contest. “Renew your service by December 31st to be entered into our Renewal Giveaway!” You get the picture.
3. Make sure you are promoting prepays at all times and link them to the deadlines and the contest. “Renew and prepay before December 1st and get a 10% discount!” Do things like offer to enter the customer into the giveaway twice if they prepay or ANYTHING THAT GETS THEM TO TAKE ACTION. Let them know that the prepay discount will decrease after a certain date. You will be surprised how a deadline on anything for anything creates action.
4. Determine your vehicle for getting your message out and there should be several. The first and easiest way to get renewal information into your customer’s hands is to leave it at their homes when you complete the final visit of the year.
Many users of the MyLawnQuote platform choose to send their renewals to their existing customers by simply setting up a "Renewal" email template and sending outbound quotes with the email subject, "Your Renewal Package." It literally takes only seconds per customer if you do it the right way and you can expect an influx of cash as a result.
1. Make sure you've uploaded your customers into the "My Customers" section of MLQ.
2. Create an email template that you title "Renewal Package"
3. Be sure your payment settings and Paypal email is set up.
4. Go to your customer list and search for the first customer you would like to renew. Click on "Create Quote for this Customer."
5. Select the email template you just set up for renewals.
6. Enter "Your Renewal Package" for your email subject.
7. Choose "Manually Enter Totals" and select the services that you would like to renew for the customer. Enter the pricing and the prepay discount you will be offering. (Choose your optional settings)
8. Choose your checkout options, send away and watch the prepayments roll in.
It absolutely makes sense to combine this renewal process with a targeted calling campaign just to let your customers know that the renewal is coming and to touch base with them one final time prior to the end of the year. Make a commitment to continue to reach out to all of your customers until you feel that you've gotten an answer from as many as you possibly can. It should be your goal to renew 100 percent of your customer base before your competitors get a chance to offer them a better price. The renewal process is quite literally the most important aspect of your business to focus on during what many consider the "off season."