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Starting up and how to gain customers


RyanJfifer

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Hi guys, I'm after a bit of advice if anyone could help. I've been looking at starting my own wfp business for a while now, and although I feel I've done a lot of research and think I'm ready to take the leap, I still have a few hurdles I'm trying to get my head around. One of these main hurdles being what is the best way of generating new customers. I've seen the term canvassing been put around a bit, but not 100% sure what this involves. Is it a good idea to get a canvassing company to help? Also would anyone recommend buying a small round to start myself up or try to go from scratch and do it my own way. Any helpful replies would be much appreciated. Thanks guys!

 

 

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Canvassing is knocking on doors and asking if they want a cleaner.

 

If you didn't mind doing this it's by far the quickest way to build a round fast.

 

If you go this route you don't need to do owt else. Just knock, clean, dump the rubbish and repeat. 

 

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Thank you for the reply. I'm absolutely more than happy to do door to door knocking myself, but unsure if a professional company would be better than I would be at that.

Have you had any experience with companies who offer to do this on the businesses behalf?

Would you also recommend canvassing over a leaflet drop or are both as good as each other?

Many thanks


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As well it depends if you have any capital to put into it and how quickly you need to build your income. If you don't have any cash then you'll have to canvass but if you've got a bit aside then buying a round is a good way to get customers fast. Only problem, being a newbie it's hard to tell if a round is any good or not.

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As well it depends if you have any capital to put into it and how quickly you need to build your income. If you don't have any cash then you'll have to canvass but if you've got a bit aside then buying a round is a good way to get customers fast. Only problem, being a newbie it's hard to tell if a round is any good or not.


Thanks for your reply.

Fortunately i do have some capital to invest into starting up, ideally I'd like to build my own round from scratch but I think perhaps a small round to get me up and running may be the way forward. Trouble is I can't find anyone wanting to sell near to me at the minute.

I'm also lucky in that I'm already self employed and sub contracting working a garden
maintenance round so I have an income whilst trying to establish my new window cleaning business.

Are there better ways of canvassing than others? Would door to door knocking be better than a leaflet through the door in your opinion?


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6 hours ago, RyanJfifer said:

 

 


Thanks for your reply.

Fortunately i do have some capital to invest into starting up, ideally I'd like to build my own round from scratch but I think perhaps a small round to get me up and running may be the way forward. Trouble is I can't find anyone wanting to sell near to me at the minute.

I'm also lucky in that I'm already self employed and sub contracting working a garden
maintenance round so I have an income whilst trying to establish my new window cleaning business.

Are there better ways of canvassing than others? Would door to door knocking be better than a leaflet through the door in your opinion?


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I hate cold callers, knocking on my door trying to sell me something. This is the 21st century and online is the best way to go. Yeah you might get a few, and I guess it still works.

 

I don't think anyone would want to sell a decent round that earns good money unless they have a illness or are retiring. There is still no guarantee that you will keep all the customers, you are just buying on good will.

 

I think flyers have around a 1-2% so deliver 1000 and you might  get 1 or 2 enquiries.

 

get yourself a website, advertise in as many free classified sites as you can, even ebay. Maybe a flyer in your local shop, ask your current garden maintenance customers if they need a window cleaner.

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A website is a good idea which can easily be set up with the likes of http://yola.com for as little as £2.70 a month you build your own their not great but will give you a online presence without a large outlay until you get established.

Best option to get a real feel for a area is to get out canvassing yourself as you will get a immediate response for potential clients and build a round fast if their is room for another cleaner in your area.

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7 hours ago, RyanJfifer said:


 
Thank you for the reply. I'm absolutely more than happy to do door to door knocking myself, but unsure if a professional company would be better than I would be at that.

Have you had any experience with companies who offer to do this on the businesses behalf?

Would you also recommend canvassing over a leaflet drop or are both as good as each other?

Many thanks


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Yes lots of experience with canvassing companies. I've used a few and still do.

 

I will say without doubt if you can do it yourself you will save a lot of money and stress. Canvassing is a lottery and picks up some great customers snd s whole lot of rubbish as well. Paying for canvassing is a long game, it will pay off eventually but you need patience and some capital.  Its very frustrating paying for work that takes you twice as long to clean, struggle to get paid for it then they drop off over the first few cleans. 

 

I hate door knocking so much I keep putting myself through this. If you can do it yourself please do it. There's a few guys on here that have built rounds mega fast because they just knocked on doors relentlessly. 

1 hour ago, dcc said:

 

 

I hate cold callers, knocking on my door trying to sell me something. This is the 21st century and online is the best way to go. Yeah you might get a few, and I guess it still works.

 

I don't think anyone would want to sell a decent round that earns good money unless they have a illness or are retiring. There is still no guarantee that you will keep all the customers, you are just buying on good will.

 

I think flyers have around a 1-2% so deliver 1000 and you might  get 1 or 2 enquiries.

 

get yourself a website, advertise in as many free classified sites as you can, even ebay. Maybe a flyer in your local shop, ask your current garden maintenance customers if they need a window cleaner.

 

Online is ok and webaites will get a few enquiries. Social media will beat a website easily for window cleaning mainly facebook.

 

However nothing beats door knocking.  No one likes someone knocking on their door and not many people like knocking but no website can produce 50 new customers a week for window cleaning unless perhaps you ate targetting the whole of the uk. There just isn't enough search traffic for "window cleaner" in most city's. 

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despite the fact some people don't like cold callers, it's still the fastest and best way to make a compact round. People don't like junk mail either and you'll get a few percent response. At least with door knocking you'll get a lot higher percentage of the street wanting to hire you and therefore will be more compact.

Are there any new housing estates currently going up where you are? They can be very good as long as you're quick and get them as they move in. Another thing you could do is look online for recent house sales in your area and canvass those.

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I hate cold callers, knocking on my door trying to sell me something. This is the 21st century and online is the best way to go. Yeah you might get a few, and I guess it still works.
 
I don't think anyone would want to sell a decent round that earns good money unless they have a illness or are retiring. There is still no guarantee that you will keep all the customers, you are just buying on good will.
 
I think flyers have around a 1-2% so deliver 1000 and you might  get 1 or 2 enquiries.
 
get yourself a website, advertise in as many free classified sites as you can, even ebay. Maybe a flyer in your local shop, ask your current garden maintenance customers if they need a window cleaner.

That's a good point, I feel the same way if someone came to my door and I know of many people who don't even answer the door when confronted with a random man.

Unfortunately I've come home from work today and had a window cleaning leaflet through the door. Not a new business, have seen them before but still a little moral dampener.

Guess I'd better up my game because houses won't want to see two leaflets in a matter of a month or two..





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despite the fact some people don't like cold callers, it's still the fastest and best way to make a compact round. People don't like junk mail either and you'll get a few percent response. At least with door knocking you'll get a lot higher percentage of the street wanting to hire you and therefore will be more compact.
Are there any new housing estates currently going up where you are? They can be very good as long as you're quick and get them as they move in. Another thing you could do is look online for recent house sales in your area and canvass those.


Thanks for the reply.
Yes a few new estates going up which was a thought when I was initially looking into this, I'd absolutely target them. The recent house sales is another great point. Also house sellers?

I think I'll try and cover all bases, get the social media sites set up, website and then canvas specific homes i.e. Bungalows, and perhaps leaflet drop other roads I think I could tap into.

Unfortunately I've come home from work today and had a window cleaning leaflet through the door. Not a new business, have seen them before but still a little moral dampener.

Guess I'd better up my game because houses won't want to see two leaflets in a matter of a month or two..





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Advertise on facebook buy and sell pages. Get a customer or two and go round to there area and canvious/flyer drop.

 

"Hi I just cleaned number 42, i'v expanded in your area,do you need a window cleaner?"

 

I'm actually going to shorten it. They say the first 6 seconds are the decider.

 

"Hi, just wondering if you needed a window cleaner?"

 

I don't actually know if people care that you expanded in this area or that you might have cleaned number 42. 

 

Least that way you'd get through more doors.

 

If they contacted you via Facebook then that means there is a demand there or there just clueless to a window cleaners presence being there.

 

Big one for me is just being out and about with a polo shirt with a logo and WINDOW CLEANER at the back. Oh and please trust me when I say this "Are you a window cleaner?" No maim I just like to wear a polo that says window cleaner.

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Advertise on facebook buy and sell pages. Get a customer or two and go round to there area and canvious/flyer drop.
 
"Hi I just cleaned number 42, i'v expanded in your area,do you need a window cleaner?"
 
I'm actually going to shorten it. They say the first 6 seconds are the decider.
 
"Hi, just wondering if you needed a window cleaner?"
 
I don't actually know if people care that you expanded in this area or that you might have cleaned number 42. 
 
Least that way you'd get through more doors.
 
If they contacted you via Facebook then that means there is a demand there or there just clueless to a window cleaners presence being there.
 
Big one for me is just being out and about with a polo shirt with a logo and WINDOW CLEANER at the back. Oh and please trust me when I say this "Are you a window cleaner?" No maim I just like to wear a polo that says window cleaner.



Absolutely top advice there again, many thanks!

Have got the logo and branding sorted, will get the polo shirts next. I like the simplicity of the name on the back, and although these people are REALLY asking that question... at least it's a foot in the door to turn around and say yes and start to sell the services there and then.

Do you think a sign written van is cost effective?


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People who see you with a polo shirt or even a sign written van are already interested. You just need to sell them your service. 

 

I dare say the van signage would pay for itself in a matter of time and is one of the best marketing tools you could have. The van is out there making you money while you clean and sleep.

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