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August 15, 2013 -  By
Lee Edwards

Lee Edwards

The Greenery targets new movers for its residential maintenance and retail garden center business.

Homeowners who’ve recently moved are a target for The Greenery, a $34.4 million landscape company based on Hilton Head Island, S.C. The company provides landscape maintenance services, but it also has a retail component. The Greenery may be on to something, considering new movers spend more in their fix six months post-move than a typical consumer does in three years, according to MoverTrends.com. Plus, research says they’re five times more likely to become long-term customers compared to a settled household.

The Greenery has been targeting this market for about 18 months with a service called Welcomemat, which sends an oversized envelope to new movers with gift certificates from participating businesses.

We asked Lee Edwards, company president and CEO, about this approach and its results.

Q: How effective has this method been?

Lee Edwards (LE): We feel it’s an excellent way to introduce new movers to our retail garden center, nursery and antiques gift shop, as well as to our residential maintenance program. We have a very nice garden center and gift shop, and by enticing newcomers with a gift certificate, this program gets them to visit our facilities before they might happen to see one of our competitors. I’d say we’ve added about 120 newcomers to our mailing list from this program after their first visit, and now we can market to them regularly with other promotions.

Q: What “offers” have you tried and which ones work best?

LE: We’ve had one basic offer since the start of $10 toward a purchase in the garden center/gift shop or 50 percent off the first month of a residential yard maintenance program.

Q: Do you use any other methods to get in touch with homeowners who’ve recently moved?

LE: We have an active advertising and direct mail program, but this is the only one geared specifically to newcomers. We believe that many newcomers want to spruce up and add their own personal touches to the landscaping of their new home.

Q: Why is this an attractive audience for your landscape business?

LE: We have a very good operation and excellent service, so we feel that anytime we can get someone to start a relationship with us, it will be a long-term relationship at all levels.

Q: Do you have any tips for other landscape businesses interested in reaching new movers?

LE: Being visible is the key thing for any business that hopes to grow, but what I don’t like about most advertising is that it’s not trackable. This service takes our gift certificates and then follows up by providing us with good information about the customers themselves. I believe that the more you know about your customer, the better your marketing efficiency will be.

 

About the Author:

Marisa Palmieri is an experienced Green Industry editor who's won numerous awards for her coverage of the landscape and golf course markets from the Turf & Ornamental Communicators Association (TOCA), the Press Club of Cleveland and the American Society of Business Publication Editors (ASBPE). In 2007, ASBPE named her a Young Leader. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Journalism, cum laude, from Ohio University’s Scripps School of Journalism.

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