Landscaping Advertising: The Comprehensive Landscaping Ads Guide (2021)
Accelerate your business growth by adding landscaping advertising – digital, traditional, or a combo – to your marketing approach.
How do you get the word out about your landscaping business?
Truck wraps, word of mouth, and lawn signs after a job well done can be effective, but they can also leave a lot of new business on the table.
If you aren’t making an effort to advertise your company, you’ll be missing out on new customers in your local market and one way to combat this is with advertising.
Of course, many business owners are hesitant to sink money into ads that they’ve never needed before or don’t know too much about and if you’ve had a steady run of work then this attitude can seem justified, but you have to consider the size of the industry – expected to generate $105.1 BILLION in revenue for 2021.
Investing a little in advertising is a proven method of getting you a more sizable piece of that pie.
The majority of these customers don’t have a particular company in mind when they start a project or begin searching for a provider. Instead, they take to the internet to find the best fit. Sometimes this search happens on Google, other times on Facebook, and sometimes they’ll be reminded of a business while browsing an entirely different topic (this is called remarketing and we’ll show you how to master it).
But since advertising has never been a universal strategy that works the same way for everyone, you need to know a little about each advertising approach to avoid wasting your hard earned income. And we’ve got all the info you need right here, so read on to learn about how your landscaping business can grow with the right advertising strategy.
It’s not just about whether or not you start spending dollars to advertise your business, it’s about where you do it and who sees it.
The right ad campaign – and that’s one that’s cost-effective and generating enough exposure to drive ROI – has a range of benefits to your landscaping company.
Advertising helps you to stay competitive
Even if you aren’t running ads or getting your name out, your competition probably is.
This can shrink the size of your potential customer base fairly quickly and if no one has heard of your company, how can you expect them to choose you over other companies who are making an effort to capture their attention?
Advertising helps you expand your reach
With a focus on a specific geographic area for local landscaping services, the number of available customers can feel capped.
One of the benefits of advertising is the ability to filter your target audience and leave your ads running while you focus on day-to-day operations. As new customers start looking for providers, your targeted ads can help you expand your reach and make your brand a desirable option.
Advertising helps boost your credibility
Taking the time (and spending the money) to run ads can contribute to your reputation and make you a more legitimate landscaper.
Buyers relate ad spend and ad awareness with established companies that have the funds and the professionalism to advertise in the first place. For example, if you saw a company advertising on Google, Facebook and Instagram, you’d think they must be pretty legit and professional to have their fingers in so many pies, and when you’re looking for a legit and professional company to hire, they’ll tick your boxes.
Advertising helps to encourage action
We’re living in the age of information overload, and everyone is using the internet to find out as much as possible before making a purchase.
Build your next landscaping ad campaign around these 3 features
Getting started with advertising can feel overwhelming, so it’s best to keep things simple.
You should build all ad campaigns, whatever platform you use, around the core values of your brand.
Consistency and clarity will help your ads, and your business, connect with customers and in many cases, these ads will be the first time that people learn about your company. You want to make sure that the details you include put your best foot forward and make the most impact.
That’s why your ads should always include at least ONE of the following elements (if not more):
Who you are
What makes you unique
What you do better than ANYONE
Let’s unpack each of these values a little.
Who you are
Every ad should clearly include your company name, a tagline, and (for ad formats that allow it) a color logo.
This will help your business become more recognizable to potential customers as they come across your information across print and digital platforms. And recognition can lead to trust, credibility, and outreach resulting in new connections and new business, making this a crucial inclusion in any ad campaign.
Landscaping services tend to be grouped together into general buckets, and it can be hard for customers to tell companies apart. For example, what separates a lawn maintenance company with a lawn mowing company?
Show off your unique selling points (USP) in your ads to attract the interest of readers across the board.
Do you offer free estimates, quick turnarounds, or sustainable products? Can you help take care of required permits, offer outdoor architecture services, or have a network of reliable subcontractors?
When you spell out what makes you special, people will be more intrigued and more likely to respond to your encouragement to reach out.
What you do better than ANYONE
There are, of course, some services that nearly all landscaping businesses provide. And for these, the key is to show exactly how you do those services better than the competition.
Are you more efficient? Do you have a larger team? Can you finish jobs more quickly? Is your pricing the most economical?
You will need to spell out for customers why you are better than the other choices available to them.
Tradies: Don’t Invest a Dollar in Digital Marketing Until You Read This!
10 landscaping advertising ideas to boost your brand
The good news here is also the bad news: there are a ton of different ways you can advertise your landscaping business.
With so much to choose from, it can be overwhelming to figure out where to start or what might work best. But with choice also comes the flexibility to pivot to new options or add on as you continue to grow.
To help with this, we’re listing out 10 of the top ways you can advertise effectively. From newer social media tactics to time-tested traditional approaches – take a look at how you can use ads to boost your brand and ultimately increase your customers.
Entire books have been written about Google Ads. And entire companies exist dedicated to managing and strategically creating Google Ads.
That’s not to say you can’t go it alone. But you will want to do your research as you head into the mix.
Google is the king of search, so many of your Google Ad options allow you to display ads in line with search results based on targeted keywords in combination with other factors like location (i.e. landscaping near me). There are three main types of Google Ads that businesses run:
Search: text ads that appear about the search results for the relevant search term
Display: image ads that appear on websites related to your selected topic
Video: clips that run before a larger video (usually on YouTube)
At Tradie Digital we’ve spent $2.3 million of our own money on Google Ads campaign and generated over $200 million in leads for landscapers and home improvement businesses.
To help advertisers, Facebook offers a few different ways you can run ads and all of them involve user targeting. You can promote your business page or share a specific post to a subset of users in a specific location to ensure you target based on your local service area.
What’s more, you can also target your audience based on certain filters, including:
And much, much more
This lets you further hone in on exactly who you think could make a great potential customer for your business.
As you create your ad content, keep in mind that images are often the most important component for a social media post (and an ad). Make sure that whatever you write, you support it with a vivid graphic showing off your work.
Instagram is a bit of a different social media monster than Facebook (and a world away from Google Ads) because it focuses on images and keeps things moving at a fast pace.
Fittingly, landscaping is a very visual industry that can lend itself well to this platform. Just get your camera and design photos ready!
You’ll probably want to have an Instagram account anyway, since they can double as a project showcase gallery. Their advertising platform lets you promote specific posts – again using targeting based on certain criteria including location.
TRADIE DIGITAL TIP: Facebook and Instagram are owned by the same parent company and allow for you to run the same ad in both places. You can make sure that people who use both (and so many users do) see the same content and images no matter where they look. It also makes it easier for you to track ad performance and see how much bang you get for your buck.
The key (just like with Facebook) is targeting. You can choose ad campaigns for specific actions, such as increasing views or encouraging clicks to a landing page. From there, you can also focus your ads on a specific local area.
Businesses can promote their tweets or accounts to increase their exposure in a particular area. These promotion options can help users reach an extra 30,000 people on average.
One interesting option: you can also target a list of past customers to keep your brand in mind until they are in need of your services again.
These site visitors are doing extra research, visiting other sites, or putting off the choice and watching cat videos instead.
Remarketing is a tactic that can let you keep your brand in front of potential customers even after they leave your website or navigate away from an ad they have seen. Remarketing ads are shown to people as they visit other websites. And you don’t have to keep track of this activity since Google does it for you.
Google Ads and Facebook Ads both offer remarketing services that can show follow-up ads (in text, photo, or video format) to reengage a potential customer. Consider using these to promote a specific service or offer that will be the final push to getting the buyer to actually make a purchase.
#6 – Direct Mail
Online is where most search is these days, but that doesn’t mean more traditional forms of advertising should be overlooked and one of the most enduring forms of this is direct mail.
For this method to be most effective, you have to go for quality over quantity.
You’re mailing your information (and probably an offer or discount) but the timing might not be right, so instead of widening the net and increasing your chance of wasting your spend, deliver direct mail to smaller areas – but with stronger incentives.
For example, instead of offering 5% off on every flyer, target a local area where yards are in need of a little TLC with an offer of 15% off, but only when redeemed through your website. This offer is more likely to be redeemed, and by funnelling traffic through your site you’ll be helping your SEO.
You can choose to send postcards or flyers yourself, targeting homes in your service area, or you can sign up for a service like Money Mailer that packages local ads and offers together in a single monthly mailing. This can take some of the pressure and hassle out of printing, postage, and overall logistics.
#7 – Event Sponsorships
Landscaping businesses rely heavily on local customers, and one way to get in front of these people is to be where they are the most.
Enter event sponsorships.
Contact your local churches, boy scouts, community affairs club, YMCA, and similar organizations about events in your area and ask about how you can help. In exchange for supporting the cause financially, you can get your logo added to all kinds of event promotions including signs, flyers, print ads, and even raffles.
#8 – Newspaper Ads
Newspapers are not what they once were, as the internet took a chunk out of this traditional media, but they are still relevant – especially in local markets.
And many publications are getting onboard with digital options in addition to print.
Getting your name in a local newspaper or circular can be a great way to instill brand awareness and credibility with a subset of your local market. Twenty-five percent of senior citizens read their news and 73% of consumers trust their local paper for community information.
#9 – Referral Program
With this method, you can get creative and put some of your customers to work for you spreading the word about your business.
Referral programs can be great ways to encourage clients to tell others about your company and their experience with your services.
You can offer a discount for every successful referral that a customer sends your way, perhaps off of a future service or one-off product. You can also offer an incentive to any new customer they recommend to you as a first-time client.
#10 – Citations and Listings
Online listings are a flexible form of advertising that don’t need to be costly.
A perfect example of cost-effective advertising is your Google My Business (GMB) listing.
These listings are completely free and enable you to list your contact information and company details. Potential customers are more likely to see these when they use Google for local search or specific terms based on your content.
Similarly, you can list your company on business directory sites like Yelp or HomeAdvisor alongside other landscapers.
These types of websites offer options for lead generation, typically across free and paid tiers. If the thought of sourcing the right business directory site feels like a chore, we hear you – that’s why we collected 80 (yep, EIGHTY) business directory sites you can list yourself on.
TRADIE DIGITAL TIP: As a landscaping business owner, you might also want to check out Houzz.
The site doubles as a photo gallery to inspire with their home projects and as a listing of vendors who can provide related services. This can be great for landscaping, where you can show off your best projects, share what makes you special, and encourage people to reach out based on what they see.
Landscape advertising mistakes to avoid at all costs
With so many advertising options it can be tempting to run wild and launch a million different ads on every platform.
While this might work, it is much more likely to waste your time and money. Here are a few things to keep in mind – and ultimately avoid – when you are starting out with your landscaping advertising.
Mistake #1 – Spending outside your means
Set a budget and stick to it.
Without a budget it’s easy to spend more than you planned.
One way to avoid this mistake is to objectively assess your business. How many new customers do you really need each month or year to stay competitive or grow in a manageable way? How many potential customers do you have to chat with or offer free quotes for before you get a new contract?
You can work backward from these numbers to decide how much to spend overall.
Once you set that number, let it ride for a few months to see how effective it really is. Don’t be tempted to try to outbid bigger brands or spend more just because you see a competitor’s name everywhere.
Mistake #2 – Assuming your ads are working
Got a handful of new clients this month?
Just make sure you know *where* those customers came from.
You might assume your new customers saw your Google Ads and clicked through to your site, which would be a win. But if those customers were all word of mouth referrals your Google Ad could be tanking and wasting money day after day – while you assume it’s killing it.
Advertising does work. But some forms of advertising work better than others for different businesses. Because of this, advertising is not a ‘set and forget’ project. Put in the work up front to set your budget based on your expected outcomes. Then, track performance and calculate your ROI.
Luckily, most of the digital platforms we listed above offer built-in metrics that will show you how many people view your ads, click them, or otherwise engage with them. You can match these numbers against your website traffic, quote requests and sales. When you meet new customers, be sure to ask how they heard about you. This will help cover other areas like newspaper ads or event sponsorships that are harder to track.
Mistake #3 – Ignoring your website
While you are putting the time and attention into ads, many potential customers will find their way back to your website.
If you don’t have a strong, professional showing here, you will lose people along the way.
Customers expect to see websites that are easy to read, engaging with lots of pictures, and professional design. This means that the layouts are organized and the pages load quickly and correctly from anywhere – whether they’re on a giant monitor at home or a small smartphone on the go.
Make sure all of the content on your website is current, accurate, and typo-free. If you don’t have a website, you should definitely look into making one.
Oh, and you don’t have to be a tech expert to get up and running or overhaul what you already have.
Change the landscape of your business with effective advertising
Organic growth is a wonderful thing, and people in your local community are bound to come across your company when their needs arise.
But if you don’t have an effective landscaping advertising strategy in place, you’ll miss out on the bulk of opportunities to grow your company.
Remember that your competitors are probably already hard at work with some form of advertising. Whether they’re distributing flyers or buying online ads, they’re capturing customers who could have been yours. And you can get ahead of the game by implementing advertising that caters to how today’s buyers research and reach out to service providers.
Targeted digital ads on Google, Facebook or Instagram (depending on your budget and needs), a strong website, and a blend of listings on business directory sites can ignite your sales by making your company more visible as people search online.
And anything you add in the real world with direct mail or print advertising will be icing on the advertising cake.
Keen for more leads but dreading the time needed to set up your ads and monitor results?