Just because its old doesn’t mean its no good …

door-hangerMany of us find ourselves going “back to the basics”. Stuff like actually saving money, living within your means, spending time with your family, boring basics like that!

So I got to thinking about some of the old tried and true marketing that I did many years ago and yet my SFS members tell me is still working for them.

So let’s talk “door hangers”. That’s right, those old fashioned marketing pieces that are physically placed at neighbor’s houses using shoe leather instead of bulk mail, newspapers or the internet.

NOTE: I’m going to focus on the good old “five around” next to jobs you are actually cleaning instead of going door to door in selected neighborhoods or even the post office’s EDDM. (Which can also be a valuable marketing technique. But another time!)

We always found the key with door hangers was the title. Ours always referred back to the neighbors having had their carpets cleaned. One option could be: “Today your neighbor cleaned up with (name of your company)”. (Subtle peer pressure here.)

NOTE: One warning here. Do NOT write down the name of the neighbor you’re cleaning for. Some people correctly view this using of their name as an invasion of their privacy. (Don’t ask me how I learned this!)

Our door hangers had a big title that said, “Today, your neighbor cleaned up big!” along with a eye-catching and dramatic color photo. We found this little play on words caused folks to at least check the body of the message.

We also put a special discount offer on the back of the door hanger. Today I would put at least a 20.00 off coupon. (I prefer a specific dollar amount instead of a percentage.)

Unless the property is specifically posted “No Trespassing” (or has a snarling dog behind the fence!) you can leave something in the door. BUT it should not be visible from the street. A good way to do this is just slip it under or inside the storm door. And of course everyone should know it is a federal offense to put unstamped stuff in a mail box!

Or even better do an “active five-around” by actually knocking or ringing the doorbell of the neighbors. Your excuse-to-knock will be: “We’d just like to apologize for any  noise as we cleaned Mrs. Jones house across the street and to make it up to you…” CLICK HERE for the complete script.


P.S. So go ahead. I challenge you- try the boring old “five-around”- put a door hanger on either side of the house and the three homes across the street. Then report back on how it works for you- even after all these years I say basic human nature doesn’t change. Let us know your thoughts …

2 thoughts on “Just because its old doesn’t mean its no good …”

  1. Stever, right-o on the scotchgard but here’s a sweet little heads up for you and all the other guys. Carpet cleaners are selling scotchgard for . 25 a s.f. here in the wastelands of chicago. I called my biggest competitor and asked his prices like I often do and his girl said s.g. was .25 a square.

    I spoke with my friend, a cleaner in st. charles, this guy is not big, he’s struggling just like me, and he’s at .25 a square to.

    this last Jan. you challenged us at s.f.s. to step up to .20 a square. I swallowed hard and did it. now I get the .20 without blinking. in fact oh great one,I’m stepping up to .25 and getting it.

    that being said, my son cleans in Tempe and they are giving the stuff away.

    companies just wing a number, any number, from free to 12 cents to what ever

    the only guys who are coming close to a real price are the chem dry guys. they’re leading the way in AZ.

    visit my blog, “the carpet cleaner’s crocodile.” it’s just chock and I do mean chock full of great carpet cleaning stories. Please tell steven spielburg to visit too.

    best sat ever!


  2. You are so right, Frankie. I tell (OK, challenge) every SFS attendee to go back, implement the Value Added Service (VAS) techniques we teach and dramatically raise their prices. Most don’t. Those that do ALWAYS tell me they are making much more money with lots less effort. Why don’t you go to “SFS Success Stories” on this site and spill the beans on HOW you used VAS to raise your prices and what it has meant in your life? We would love to have you plus I’ll let you post your web site address!

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