Thank you squid

I got a $1,800 job thanks in part to squid’s guidance on cleaning awnings. The client was impressed, and agreed to a monthly cleaning agreement for some other cleaning.
Things have been REALLY slow the last three weeks and I needed this more than you could imagine. Not sure what is going on, but my phone needs to ring for some house washes…like right now.
Finally, thank you to everyone who contributes to making this a resource for those of us who are still in the early stages of our business journey.


What are you doing to make your phone ring? That is the question you need to answer.

Here’s what I’ve done to try to make the phone ring. Let me know if you have any suggestions.

I have a website, insurance, google my business, all five star reviews on google, google ads, professional vinyl graphics on truck, BNI group, Facebook page, Craigslist postings, professional looking uniforms, radio ads, yard signs, five arounds, hang door hangers when I have nothing scheduled, and even paid people to help me distribute door hangers to boost the amount delivered.

The problem is that there are a lot of businesses that just opened up their doors here recently.

The next things I plan to try are paid Facebook ads and EDDM mailers. Then I’m fresh out of marketing ideas.

If you’re doing all that and the phone isn’t ringing then you might want to sit down with a marketing consultant and figure out why.

I do a lot of door knocking as I am getting established in the area, and for a lark I switched to knocking while wearing my work gear (I wear high vis shirts since people are idiots) and that got me past the gatekeepers with more success.
I think the people are wary of slick looking sales guys and scammers since we get a lot of that, when they see someone dressed to work they feel a little more at ease.

You need to do a customer’s house and ask them to post a review on Nextdoor.

This is my first year in business. This spring I did pretty good, averaging 1-2 houses a day. But then it just kinda stopped. I’ll check out a marketing consultant. Thanks for the advice.

Your website says you have 13 years of experience.

I wear work boots, dickies tan pants, and a black polo with the business name embroidered.
I’ll look at some high vis stuff. Thanks for the advice.

Yes, I worked for an industrial cleaning company prior to starting my own business.

I’ve posted on Nextdoor but I didn’t know that there was a function to review a business. Or do you mean just reviewing me in an informal post?

I agree with the other poster that if you are doing all that then something else is to blame. It coulb be the economics of your area.

What did you mean by there are alot of businesses in your area opening their doors? Other power washing businesses?

Looked at your area and the competition is pretty fierce. There’s one business with 20 reviews and another with 177 reviews in Des Moines and both have 5 star ratings. You’ve got to find your unique selling point because if I’m Joe Homeowner I’m going to call the business that has 177 ratings unless you give me a very specific reason to choose otherwise.

Yeah, I researched my competition prior to starting my business and the competition was manageable. Then as soon as the weather got above 40 degrees, competition came out of the woodwork. The cat is definitely out of the bag about power washing in my area, everyone seems to be doing it.

I have been trying to figure out how to market that thing that makes me better than the competition when it comes to house washing. I’ve thought about sponsoring a worthy cause, but to be honest I don’t have the money for that yet.
I am trying to focus on being the go-to guy for my specific suburb. Des Moines is a big city, but I live in a wealthy suburb that doesn’t have any serious competition yet. I’m pretty new to Facebook so there is a chance that I can continue to work that Avenue.
I shut off my google ads last week because I was spending $700 a month with almost no return. Most of the stuff I get is from door hangers.

Being an “owner-operated” local business means more to a lot of people than you might realize. The fact that you’re not just sending out some techs to do the work, but you are going out and doing it yourself as the business owner, can be a big selling point.

There are probably plenty of o/o pw’ers in your area, but many will be too shy to highlight that fact.

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That’s a big dilemma for me. I feel like more residential work would prefer an owner-operator, but most commercial would feel better about a business that has employees, one that they perceive has greater capabilities. Or am I off base here?