Do flyers work for drumming up business, or is there a better way to catch the attention of new prospects?
Listen: Are Flyers Effective for Getting Cleaning Jobs?
Watch: Are Flyers Effective for Getting Cleaning Jobs?
Hi there. I’m Angela Brown, and this is Ask a House Cleaner. This is the show where you get to ask a house cleaning question, I get to help you find an answer. If I don’t have an answer, I probably know somebody who does. I’m connected to the best and the brightest minds, in the housecleaning industry. These are my peers and my colleagues, and we are determined to help you find an answer to your question.
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Today’s Question: Are Flyers Effective for Getting Cleaning Jobs?
Today’s question comes from a girl who is starting her own house cleaning company.
And she wants to know “if running flyers is still an effective way to drum up some business as you’re getting started with housekeeping.”
Today’s Answer: Do Flyers Work for Getting Cleaning Jobs?
Now, I am a huge fan of running flyers. If you’ve read my book, How To Start Your Own House Cleaning Company, (it’s available on Amazon) there’s a whole section in there on running flyers.
Flyers are a great cheap way of advertising your business. If you do it correctly you can have business coming in within a day or two. And lots of people save the flyers. If they are not ready to hire you today, they can hire you when they are ready.
And once you have clients, you can work from referrals after that. I’ve moved several times over the years, and each time I have started my business over from scratch. No clients, same business, new neighborhood, new clientele.
Dropping off flyers is the old-fashioned way of doing business, but it’s really effective.
Choose The Type of House You Want to Clean
You get to pick the neighborhood that you want to work in. You can drive through a neighborhood and you can look and see the age of the houses.
“Do these houses have double pane windows where they’re going to be easier to clean than those windows that have all the separate panes with all the little crumbly stuff that falls and breaks, and then you got to replace the windows if you damage them?”
You’ll want to make sure that the houses are in the type of shape that you want to clean. You also want to make sure that the size of the house is something you want to clean. If you drive through a neighborhood in all the houses are like 10,000 square feet that might freak you out, I know it would freak me out.
Run Flyers in the Neighborhood You Want to Work In
Okay, so pick the geographic hub where you want to work.
You get to target the neighborhood you want to work in. And then run flyers in that neighborhood.
You can run flyers in your own neighborhood, or in the neighborhood next door, or the neighborhood on the other side of that, without traveling for 45 minutes between houses.
You can literally go work down the street. And I’ve done this for years, I worked in my own neighborhood.
It’s beautiful for this reason, the neighbors can drive by. And they see my house, and they say; “Wow, look she takes really great care of her yard. She must also take really good care of the inside of her house.” It’s a great advertisement for my house cleaning business.
Work In Your Own Neighborhood – Skip The Commute
Another thing is these are my neighbors, so they say “Of course we can trust her, she’s not going to run off and then steal our stuff, or skip out, or whatever. She’s our neighbor.” There’s some responsibility that’s connected to that.
The System Works
I have used the exact same system, the same flyers, and the same process for twenty-five years. And I have received the exact same successful results. So I’m sharing it with you because it works.
You are in business for yourself, so you can do whatever you want. And you change the system however you want. It won’t hurt my feelings. But if your system doesn’t work, come back to this system, because it works.
Follow it step-by-step and rebuild your business so you have recurring clients and a steady stream of cash flow.
I buy one ream of colored paper. (500 sheets) The cost for this is $10 to $15 dollars – usually like $11.49 or something like that. Choose a light pastel so it’s easy to read.
Print in Black Ink (Not Colored)
Use your home printer to print up the flyers and print them in black and white ink. Don’t spend lavish amounts of money on glossy brochures or four color printing. That will give the impression that you are a franchise with an $80,000 investment who needs to recoup those costs.
You are a one man/woman show out of the shoot. You are professional, but you keep your costs low because every dollar you save, is a dollar in your pocket. Your flyer will tell your customer exactly what type of business you are. And that translates into the client asking “is this the right cleaning service for me?”
Your flyer will answer a series of questions the client will have.
So, What Should My Flyer Say?
The good news is you can say whatever you want it to say. You can have pictures or bullet points.
Regardless of what you write on your flyer, you need to answer some basic questions:
- Who are you?
- What are you selling?
- Why do I need your Service?
- How do I get in touch with you?
- Do you have a website or email?
- Do you guarantee your work?
- How much do you charge? Or Are you affordable?
- Are you bonded and insured? (If you are not, and you choose not to be, do not advertise this on your flyer. Only list it if you ARE bonded and insured.)
- Do you accept credit cards?
- Do you work weekends? (If you do not work weekends, do not advertise this either. Only list it if you are willing to work weekends.)
Want a Free Flyer Template – You Can Edit and Use?
Here’s the One I’ve Used for 25 Years That Works for Me
Click the link and an automated system will email you a copy you can edit and use free of charge.
Tweak it. Change the address, change the name, change the credentials whatever, make that your own. It’s a crummy flyer, but it works wonders. And it has worked for everybody I know who has used it. It’s an amazing flyer, super crummy, and it works.
Not four color. Not glossy. Black and white, half a sheet.
Or, you can create your own from scratch. Google the term (House Cleaning Flyer). Hundreds of samples of house cleaning flyers will pop up. You will see full-color flyers and some that are black and white. Some have tear tags, while others appear to be business cards.
Some work and some don’t. But Google the term and look at what others have done.
If you’re not particular, use mine. They’re proven and they work, and it will save you all afternoon going down a rabbit hole of graphic design and ad copy.
To get the most from your efforts here are some simple rules to follow:
Include The Tasks You Do On Your Flyers
Have a list of services you offer.
I empty the trash, and I clean the window sills, and I do baseboards, and I dust blinds… and whatever it is.
Then at the very bottom of mine, there’s a statement that reads; “I work by referral only. This is a one-time flyer in this neighborhood, and I’m just introducing myself because I have one opening. So if you don’t need my service now, please save this until you do.” And that’s the end of the flyer.
Create Scarcity On Your Flyers – Which is a Great Closing Technique
So what you do with your flyer is you say; “Hey I’m Angela I’m in the neighborhood and I have two openings.” That’s it. Two openings. The truth is, if you’re just starting out your business, you may have a hundred openings. Right?
Don’t tell people that. Because if you say “I have a hundred openings” well that looks like you don’t know your marketing very well. And they start thinking:“well, you must not be very good at what you do. Why do you have a hundred openings?”
People want to hire people who are booked. Who work by referral only. If you’re passing out flyers that means you need new business. That’s what that means.
However, if it says I only have one opening in this neighborhood I would like to come by and clean your house. “Oh. She only has one opening she must be really good, she is super booked.” Once you book that appointment, you can release one more opening. Do you see how this works?
So, what you’re doing is you’re creating a scarcity by saying “I only have one opening.” But you’re targeting the market that you want to work in.
Drive Prospects from Your Flyer to Social Media
Here’s the catch to flyers:
On your flyer, you must have something that links back to your website or your social media.
Because before people are going to hire a perfect stranger to come into their home, they’re going to vet you on social media or online.
They’re going to look for you. They’re going to make sure that they’re not hiring a pervert, or somebody who’s been incarcerated, or somebody’s who is going to steal their stuff. They want to know that their family is safe. Their pets are safe, their home is safe.
The Right Way and Wrong Way of Flyers
Print 2 flyers on one piece of paper and save money.
Print in black & white rather than color – it makes you look like a small business. It makes your services look more approachable and affordable. Slick shiny full-color flyers suggest a franchise or high-end cleaning service that has high operating costs.
Organized layout suggests organized thinking.
Use 1 graphic per flyer that says what you are selling. (Tell your story in 1 simple, black and white graphic.)
Target the neighborhoods you want to work in.
List your credentials (Bonding & Insurance, Accepts Credit Cards, X number of years experience, etc.)
Leave in a newspaper box, under a door, in the door jam etc.
Print 1 flyer per page – it wastes paper and is not eco-friendly.
Disorganized graphic layout – suggests disorganized person or company.
Multiple graphics make the flyer look cluttered and dilutes the message.
Too small of font – gets tossed without reading.
Leaving them in parking lots on cars requires a permit and if you don’t have a permit, it can invoke a fine.
Leaving them on community bulletin boards, coffee shops or signposts invites calls from anywhere. People who gather at those places are from different geographical locations. You don’t want to travel anywhere to clean. You don’t get paid for travel time and expense and you don’t want to waste time and gas money driving thirty minutes to the next client.
I do NOT recommend a flyer with tear tags – like the one shown here. People rip off the tag and then and they put it in their pocket never to be seen again. When they get home, they can’t remember what it was they were calling about. Super non-effective.
Deliver Your Flyers
A cut up flyer (1/2 page of an 8 x 11 sheet of paper) fits nicely in a shoebox on the passenger seat of the car for easy access while delivering flyers. You can buy a small jar of SortKwik to keep your fingers moist while you keep reaching for the next flyer.
Depending on the neighborhood, there are better times of the day and week to run flyers. What works best for the cleaners in our network is to go around 9:00 am on a weekday. We use a weekday because people check their mail on weekdays. Everybody has left for work and you can get in and deliver your flyers before the mail truck comes. Also, avoid garbage pick-up day. You don’t want to be navigating in and around garbage cans out on the street.
Start On The Left Side of the Street
Start on the left side of the street. Drive slow with your blinkers (hazard lights) on. Leave your flyer in the newspaper box. DO NOT LEAVE YOUR FLYERS IN THE MAILBOX. The mailbox is federal property and is illegal to open anyone else’s mailbox.
If you get caught putting a flyer inside a mailbox, you can be fined a hefty fine from the US Postal Service.
And they can make you pay full postage for every single flyer that they find. So don’t put it in the mailbox. But put it in the newspaper box.
Instead, leave the flyers in the newspaper tubes, or taped to the newspaper tube. Don’t be obnoxious with it. You don’t want to send the wrong message right off the bat. You just people to see your flyer.
Watch for and yield to cars pulling out of their driveways, kids on bicycles, women or men walking pets etc. Always give them the right of way.
If you see someone out in their yard or near the mailbox when you approach, smile, wave and hand them your flyer. You want to portray your best image even when out running flyers.
Wear Your Uniform When Running Flyers
The other thing that I might recommend is this: wear your uniform when you’re out delivering flyers. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve had people running out going: “Wait! Stop. Can you come in and give me a bid right now?”
“Yes, I can. I’m prepared to do that.” And so have your worksheets with you and get out and go in and deliver a free estimate.
That happens to so many people that I know. It’s a possibility. So be prepared for it. And then also realize as you’re out delivering flyers, you are an advertisement for your business.
Wash Your Car Before You Drop Off Flyers
If your car is dirty and if you’re not your uniform, that sends a message really quickly before they ever even saw your flyer. Make the people who see you think:
“Wow, that’s a really clean car.” “That person looks like they are in a uniform.” “What’s going on there?” “Who is that person?”
See how that works? You are an advertisement for your business.
So do flyers work? Yes, they work really well if you follow these rules.
Work Smart Not Hard
So that’s it for today.
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