Landscaping and lawn care are services that take place behind the scenes in every garden and patch of grass, but are often glanced over and taken for granted. Schools, churches, parks, country clubs, community centers, businesses, and even government buildings all rely on local landscapers to keep their properties looking well-maintained and attractive.
Thanks to this widespread need for lawn care and landscaping services, there are plenty of opportunities for landscapers to form community partnerships and grow their businesses. From donating your time and services to a local charity organization to partnering with a neighborhood or homeowners association, community partnerships allow landscapers to share their work with their communities and develop trust with potential clients.
If you’re the owner of a landscaping or lawn care service, consider pursuing one of these 6 community partnership ideas to boost your local brand recognition and strengthen your business.
1. Environmental Conservation Centers
Landscaping does more than make front lawns look inviting; it can also play an important role in environmental health. Properly landscaped lawns can reduce runoff and soil erosion, and promote biodiversity.
Environmentally-conscious landscapers can plan their services strategically so as to minimize water usage and to conserve natural resources. They can also seek out the least toxic solutions to pest problems and use environmentally-friendly fertilizers and insecticides to reduce damage to the natural ecosystem.
For these reasons, many conservation centers and environmental protection organizations are interested in building alliances with local landscapers. They may provide support, tools, and education for green landscaping, and acknowledge your business as an ally to their cause. This can go a long way with today’s increasingly aware consumers.
2. Chambers of Commerce
Most local chambers of commerce are eager to support locally owned businesses in their communities. After all, supporting the economic health of their community is the primary reason why chambers of commerce exist. The level of support may vary, but they generally offer networking opportunities and educational classes, including free tools and resources for expanding your business. They may also assist with referrals or list your landscaping business as a recommended service on their site.
Best of all, there’s a good chance that the other businesses who have partnered with your local chamber of commerce will have landscaping needs of their own, creating an easy networking and growth opportunity.
3. Homeowners Associations
Local HOAs have a lot on their plates when it comes to ensuring their neighborhoods stay within community guidelines and continue looking clean-cut and perfectly polished. For HOA leaders, partnering with a reputable landscaper they can trust to get the job done right each and every time can be invaluable.
What makes this type of partnership so successful is that it’s a win-win for both parties: the homeowner’s association will have a reliable go-to expert for keeping their neighborhood in tip-top shape, and you’ll have a steady stream of work and income. Some landscapers are even able to focus their entire business model around supplying lawn care services for HOAs.
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4. Home and Garden Shows
Local and regional home and garden shows attract hundreds – and even thousands – of attendees who are interested in learning about the latest remodeling and landscaping trends. In many cases, they’re also eager to learn about the companies who can help them bring their dream projects to life.
Search for home and garden shows in your area and reach out to them to learn about the ways local businesses can get involved. You may be able to set up a booth and invite attendees to learn about your services or sponsor a portion of the event and be recognized for your contribution. You might even be able to teach a workshop and show off your expertise, such as
caring for certain types of flowers or getting rid of pesky native weeds. Any of these suggestions would help you develop trust and brand recognition among the community.
5. Nonprofits and Charities
Donating landscaping services to nursing homes, women’s and children’s shelters, community centers, and other programs that aid the local community is a fantastic way to give back and show that your business values and appreciates your local area. It’s easier than you think to get started – simply offer your lawn care services pro bono to a charity, nonprofit, or other organization that you’d like to support.
For example, you could offer to build a small meditation garden at a shelter for women, to spruce up the front lawn of a local nonprofit office, or to build a butterfly garden at a nursing home. Not only will passerby get a glimpse of your talent, but they’ll also take note of your compassion (which consumers greatly appreciate in a local business).
Keeping in line with the theme of “giving back,” consider partnering up with a local school to donate your time, supplies, and landscaping expertise to a campus beautification project. Lead eager students, teachers, and other school volunteers in a mission to plant more trees, create an herb garden, or plant a bed of flowers using school colors. You’ll teach students the value of hard work and community service by leading as an example, and can also educate them about botany and the environment.
Not only will your good deed spread through word-of-mouth to the teachers and parents of the students you work with (opening countless doors for local landscaping opportunities), but the entire school network and community will appreciate your efforts. You can give back to your community and show off your quality work in a single partnership.
As the owner of a lawn care or landscaping business, it can be tough to push your brand and grow your clientele in a successful, sustainable way. But by seeking out community partnerships, you can strengthen your business and provide a real benefit to your partners, too.