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Show Me The Money!

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by DAZ982500, Apr 26, 2005.

  1. DAZ982500

    DAZ982500 Senior Member
    Messages: 142

    This Will Be My Second Year Doing Snowplowing.last Year I Plowed For Some Of My Lawn Customers. I Found With The Cost Of Insurance 1800.00 Per Year That If I Am Going To Make It On This Side Of The Season I Either Have To Get Alot Of Residential Accounts Or Get Some Commercial Accounts Or Sub.i Had A Post About A Month Ago In Regards To Pricing I Believe I Have Worked This Out The Question I Have Today Is How Do I Get Alot More Business.i Know About Flyers Leaving Them Off In Doors, The Newspaper Only Yielded 2 Extra People For 45.00 1 Week Not Good.i Would Like To Get Some Small Apartment Complexes Or Small Business Offices With Out Physically Going From Door To Door When Do You Start How Did You Go About Doing It. I Might Be Able To Sub At 40.00 An Hour This Seems Low To Me But I Have To Travel 10 Miles To Get To Jobs Advize Thanks.
  2. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    Well, as you've found out, it's not easy getting started in snowplowing and you're not going to make a lot of money at it. The problem I see is that the best way to increase business is the very things you're either not wanting to do or are hesitant to do. For any area with a substantial amount of commercial business, there is going to be considerable competition. You're going to have to stand out among the crowd (of plow guys).

    Start now for next winter. Make sure you talk to a decision-maker. If you're considering an apartment building, condo or business park (group of businesses), you'll probably need to submit a proposal to a committee. If you're dealing with a sole business, you'll want to get to talk to the owner. The area you are in will dictate how formal you want to be. Here, a lot of business is done on an informal basis. For instance, I once was buying window glass and the owner asked how much to plow his lot. I asked a few questions as to his expectations and gave him a seasonal price on the spot.

    If you are in a more metropolitan area, ask the decision-maker if they have a "Request for Proposal" that they use to get snow plowing bids. Even if they don't, I've found that merely by asking for an RFP, they will suddenly take you more seriously. Even if you're not in a metropolitan area, have Proposals and Contracts which you develop for each and every job you get. Ironically, I've found in this area, where people are very averse to contracts, they really want Proposals. It's crazy, but they really seem to go for them and it helps me stand out.

    If you're really not wanting to put in the time and effort neccesary to develop you're own contracts, I'd suggest subbing.

    As far as how I did it, I spent all Summer talking snowplowing to anybody who seemed even remotely interested. I let the few small business owners know I was starting snowplowing. I had cards made up, put them up at the local convenience store and handed them to anyone who would take one. I even offered to plow the local library, that was just being built, for free if their insurance company would give me a waiver of liability. I plowed the first couple of times for free, until they got word that the insurance company wouldn't go along with it. Then they hired me since they liked me and it was too late to get someone else. The point is, I found an angle and took it. I didn't keep it the next winter, but I got some exposure.
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2005
  3. DAZ982500

    DAZ982500 Senior Member
    Messages: 142

    Thanks For The Comeback.i Think I May Have Mislead You I Am Willing To Do What Ever It Takes To Increase My Business Client Base. I Was Mainly Searching For Any Ideas That Maybe Outside The Since I Do Agree There Are Many Plowers Out There And Plenty Without Insurance I Cannot And Willnot Compete With Them.i Want To Do This The Right Way Insurance Proffessionalism.i Am Trying Not To Put A Time Line On This.thanks Mick For Your Advice.
  4. SkykingHD

    SkykingHD Senior Member
    Messages: 368

    Show me the money

    I don't know the competition in your area but I do know you can get a lot of work if you bid low. The bad thing about bidding low is you don't make any money. The goal is to get lots of good paying jobs. If the Johny 6 packs driving rolling scrap iron with no insurance have destroyed the market in your area look elsewhere. We have been in business 30+ yrs and now have seen the price of snow plowing go down. We look for the good paying jobs and let the others go. If I am going to work to loose money I will start drinking again and watch the fire burn in fireplace when it is snowing.

    Good luck and yes it takes skill to bid the right amount to make money and get the job. Anyone can bid low and get the job the trick is to make money doing the work.