A cleaning business flyer that works
Cleaning business flyers might seem like a little thing. However, most cleaning pros discover that when you need business quickly, the flyer plays an indispensable role. It pays to design a flyer that will bring in business right away.
When designing your flyer keep in mind the following principles:
Be eye-sight friendly
Make text large enough to be seen from a distance. Can both younger and older people read it comfortably? Make your text large, pictures small.
Design your flyer to serve in two ways:
- full-page flyer
- half-page door hanger
Good design leads the readers' eye
Make your cleaning business flyer scannable by using several different fonts and sizes. Aim to catch the readers' attention so they will tune in more closely to check out your offer.
Crowd the page, and you'll crowd out the reader too. Leave clear spaces between sections to make it easy to scan.
Make your flyer about your customers - not about you!
The moment they tune in closer they're on the lookout for something very specific. Do you know what that is? They're asking themselves, "What's in it for me?"
People want a good deal (spending the least amount possible) or they want to get top quality. Go for top quality.
List all the ways in which your service benefits them. Finally, at the end of that list of customer benefits, mention your qualifications. Here is what we say:
- So very reliable.
- Definitely punctual.
- Incredibly flexible.
- Remarkably good.
A little cheeseball, yes, but it works. It shows self confidence, yet also that we have a sense of humor about ourselves. This relaxes people. It also pre-qualifies your customer as the type of person you would want to work for: Someone that is relaxed who also has a sense of humor.
And preferably, wealthy. Ev learned early in this business to turn off the grumps and maudlin victim types. I agree with him. You can't run a solvent business by giving away your service for next-to-nothing. Your time and professional effort is worth good money, but no one else will think so unless you do first. (We get into this in some depth in the e-book, if you're curious and want to read more on this particular point.)
Don't list your services on your flyer. Send them to the website for that. Use flyer space to tell them how they can benefit from your services. Remember their burning question, "What's in it for me?"
Clip art is cute but I think most high-end clients see clip art as a red flag. Photos of yourself are better. If people can look into your eyes they feel they can trust you. Otherwise you are a complete mystery, and they may not call. It is doubtful that they would call a clip-art character. What we did was draw a cute cartoon of ourselves and had a photo too.
If you need to generate work quickly or you are just starting out, then offering a discount is a good way to get your cleaning business going. However, after you are established, discounts may do more harm than good.
Discounts on your cleaning services will attract bargain shoppers that will most likely:
- Hire you to clean once a year at 50% off.
- Hire you on call, and constantly reschedule.
- Always haggle over the price.
- Watch your every move and give you advice. (Man, I hate that!).
Personally, our lives got a whole lot easier when we started cleaning for wealthy clients.
They have no interest in cleaning and they are more likely to be looking for a tax write-off than a basement-bargain deal. Make your flyer speak to that client.
Make it slightly funny. Ours says "We love to clean! (go figure)," on one flyer and on another we used a quote that says, "I can see clearly now that Ev has gone".
Put a brief and humorous quote at the very bottom. It doesn't have to make them laugh out loud. At the bottom of ours it says, "Suze & Ev often reflect that - to be happy is to make others so."
I found that when the flyer was clever or cute and funny, people would hang onto it until they needed a cleaner. I had people that held onto my flyers for years before they called. I had a person that had a collection of them and would show them to people at parties, etc. So much of what your competition is putting out there is boring, lifeless and uninspired. Making yours memorable doesn't require that much effort, and people definitely appreciate it.
Make contact-info tabs at the bottom of your cleaning business flyer, so that in public places on bulletin boards, interested parties can easily pull off a tab and put it in their wallet or purse. This makes a big difference! Be accessible and make your contact info easy to find.
Once you have a budget for flyering, Get two-sided door hangers and put the benefits pitch on one side and your qualifications on the other.
And of course it needs your website on it! Make that easy to read and remember.
Always flier so you have a pipeline-full of jobs to select from. Not only will it keep you in the flow, financially, but it makes you look like you are in demand.
If people call and you tell them you're all booked up, that drives them crazy. They want in on it. They feel they've lost out on some sort of a secret good deal. Most professional cleaners do such ho-hum average work that to have an in-demand one is really novel.
That approach works well in status-conscious regions. Such was the case for Evan when he worked in Boulder, CO. People were actually bidding for his services. He ended up with a job cleaning an empty mansion once a month for five hours that paid $200. This place was never dirty! The woman who hired him asked him, "tell me what your best-paying job is, and I'll top it." So he got rid of his lowest-paying job and took hers.
Once you start working, don't spend your own time flyering. Get to work on your jobs. Hire college students to blanket the best neighborhoods for you. Pay them $8 - 10 per hour. They should be able to flyer 80 houses per hour. Give them a map and have them mark it as they go. If you land one job per hundred houses flyered, that one job could pay thousands of dollars over the course of the job, so it makes sense to pay out $8 to get it.
For more advice on flyering, other methods of getting the word out, and other smart suggestions for all aspects of starting a cleaning business, please read our blog.