To put flyers through peoples door

(48 Posts)
Lucyellensmum95 Sat 16-Mar-13 12:12:38

and hope that they are not just put in the bin?

Its for my DPs building maintenance business and his specialism in box sash windows

Is this a worthwhile route of marketing? or a waste of time/money ?

Milliways Sat 16-Mar-13 12:14:44

We have had some business from flyers. I bin most of them, but they do get a look and some local business ones I keep for future use.

Good luck - it's hard being self employed.

exexpat Sat 16-Mar-13 12:14:56

A lot of them - probably 9 out of 10 - will go straight in the bin, but they may catch the eye of anyone who is thinking of getting work done. I have kept a few flyers for that sort of thing so that I can call for quotes when I finally get round to getting my masonry and roof done.

lannyshrops Sat 16-Mar-13 12:16:55

I look at them to see if they are advertising anything I or a friend may need/want.

exexpat Sat 16-Mar-13 12:17:12

I also look for ads for that sort of thing in a local free mini-magazine we get every month, and in the local Denton's directory. The carpenter who did my built-in bookshelves came from an ad in a shop window. But like most people, I think, I am most likely to go by personal recommendation when it comes to building work.

JennyPiccolo Sat 16-Mar-13 12:17:15

My friend used to have a flyering business. It does work. You should flyer houses in conservation areas for the windows.

VenusRising Sat 16-Mar-13 12:20:33

You might be better off handing out flyers for an hour in your local DIY shop.

Getting a website also is a good idea. Also get an ad into the parish magazine.

Also, use free and next to nothing printing with - they do some great deals.

Piercy Sat 16-Mar-13 12:20:36


We're self employed, we found leaflet drops didn't work, what we did do was take adverts out in parish magazines as it is repetitive appearance and goes out on a regular basis to all the houses - saves you having to do it.

Good luck it is tough out there at the moment


VenusRising Sat 16-Mar-13 12:23:01

Hey Piercy, I see you do the parish mags too - they're great aren't they?
I'm also self employed.
Good luck OP.

Lucyellensmum95 Sat 16-Mar-13 12:25:13

exexpat, we do get the majority (well all) of DPs work via word of mouth and have done for about seven years but lately the work has dried up to a trickle and DP is wanting to specialise in the box sash things, he is a carpenter by trade but is very flexible and will also do plastering and bathrooms.

Jenny, we are targeting those areas yes.

Ironically we have got one enquiry from the 100 leaflets we put out the other day - but it was one i cheekily left befind on the shelf in the cafe we stopped for a coffee in grin The lady asked to see an example of DPs work, the best part of it was we were able to tell her to look out of her window because he had done the window/balcony in the house opposite smile

catgirl1976 Sat 16-Mar-13 12:27:05

We have a little magazine of local businesses that comes through the door once a month

I keep it and have used businesses out of it before and a joiner friend and an electrician friend get a lot of work from it. I don't know if you have anything like that in your area?

I do scan fliers but I don't think I have used them. If I was looking for a service at the time they came I probably would but I don't keep them for future reference (if that makes sense)

DeepRedBetty Sat 16-Mar-13 12:32:02

I've still got about five hundred flyers left over. I poked the other 1500 through all the local letterboxes. I've never had a single enquiry as a result.

Word of mouth and the website seems to be the most effective.

As for the flyers that come through my own door - the only time I ever responded to one all I got was a visit from a very pushy salesman followed by an avalanche of calls - so they go straight to the recycle bin.

Snoopingforsoup Sat 16-Mar-13 12:32:06

Ooh, he'd do well in our Victorian Neighbourhood.
Maybe if you only put them through the ones with wooden box sash windows you'll save paper? We've had ours overhauled a couple of times now. I keep builders leaflets - it's getting the buggers to provide a quote that's the problem.

Snoopingforsoup Sat 16-Mar-13 12:34:03

Agreed the local mags are always a good starting point when l

Snoopingforsoup Sat 16-Mar-13 12:35:18

Looking for builders etc. ditto Property Mart

youllneedthisfish Sat 16-Mar-13 12:45:18

Do you have a website? Do you monitor you presence on local internet forums etc? I would get a Wordpress website up and running (easy - free - and upgradeable if you want to spend £60 on a nice theme a few months later). Get a facebook page linked to it. like lots of local businesses and news from the facebook page. Ask happy customers to give you testimonials that you can drip-feed onto the facebook and website. Get customers to like you on facebook or put pics of windows for their friends to see.

Monitor how you come up on google - do you have correct contact details on etc - I have given up on people this way...

Its a big purchase (which I am saving 10k to do on my big casement windows - the person I will use did my neighbours - and we watched him work)

I have used an electrician from a very well-used local messageboard - lots of recommendations. He was incredibly busy. He was also good. Its worth noting that he did ask me to post a recommendation on his behalf if I liked his work, and he did ask me where I found him. Good for him - there's a man who knows where his business comes from - and how to get recommended. Don't ask -don't get!

KatyTheCleaningLady Sat 16-Mar-13 13:01:22

The response rate will be less than 1%. They need to be targeted to the right homes, and they should be put through individually, not folded into a pile of other leaflets. The Royal Mail service tends to do this :your leaflets will be inside a large leaflet from a supermarket.

My leaflets are very good, personally delivered to the right sort of homes, individually. I get maybe 4 calls per 1000.

41notTrendy Sat 16-Mar-13 13:08:30

I flick through them and if its something I know we may need I keep. But tbh, I research best I can and/or go with personal recommend. And for some reason I get put off if the only contact info is a mobile number or unprofessional email address.

BawbagBiggins Sat 16-Mar-13 13:10:44

As well as hand picking the homes you leaflet I would suggest only doing it on a Saturday afternoon/sunday morning so it doesn't get binned with the mountains of leaflets the postman pushes through the door every morning.
If it's the only thing landing on the door mat I think there is a higher chance of it being read at least x

KatyTheCleaningLady Sat 16-Mar-13 13:10:53

Before buying advertising in a local magazine, call a couple of the advertisers with trades similar to yours and ask if they've been happy with the response.

I haven't heard encouraging things regarding cleaning advertising in them, but other trades may do better.

I can get 10,000 glossy double sided A5 leaflets printed for about £110 including delivery. I can get the design of both sides for less than £40.So,for £150 I can get about 20 repeat customers. If I am not cleaning, then I am putting out leaflets. About 100 an hour is the rate. Tuesday I have no cleaning jobs, so I will put out 500 and probably gain a customer or two.

Google ad words works well for me. I only pay per click after people have searched for something like "house cleaning in Mytown."

GinAndSlimlinePlease Sat 16-Mar-13 13:11:49

We're having lots of work done on our crumbling house.

To be honest, leaflets go straight into the bin.

We found a plumber through a good advert in the local paper.

A roofer through word of mouth.

A tree surgeon through the council's website.

A garden clearer who was doing the garden several houses down, who was being friendly as we walked past.

Not sure if this helps? !

scottishmummy Sat 16-Mar-13 13:14:14

Sorry but i bin all flyers
Have used rated people and rod of mouth
Best wishes with business, it's hard getting established and client base for word of mouth

GinAndSlimlinePlease Sat 16-Mar-13 13:16:10

Extra things that help...

I don't book anyone with only a mobile number.

a website helps, but no website is better than a bad website.

Our council do a registered trades thing, which definitely gives me confidence.

Because (like most people) I'm busy working the same hours as my trades people, I like to be able to email. Or be able to call out of normal hours. I know that's really disruptive to family life, but I want to employ someone who is contactable.

cozietoesie Sat 16-Mar-13 13:17:49

I read all the flyers but most of them do then go in the bin. Most of my work is done through finding firms in the free newpapers or on the net - lately, mostly on the net so be sure you've got a website/presence there.

Wish you were in Scotland. My sash windows glare at me nightly!

TheSecondComing Sat 16-Mar-13 13:20:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

If you are going to do the leaflet drop, push them right through - anyone who leaves a leaflet sticking out of my letter box gets it binned without reading. I only save them if I am thinking of having that thing done.

I use Which Local and Checkatrade as well as asking around and looking at the local mag. I am happy to like FB pages of small businesses that I have used and that have been good. Does he have all his details on the side of his van? I sometimes make a note of website names form tradesman's vans and check them out if they seem to be getting a lot of work locally.

ParsleyTheLioness Sat 16-Mar-13 13:20:54

OP...apparently a 1% result from untargetted marketing is the norm, so that's consistent with your recent experience.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Sat 16-Mar-13 13:21:02

I really dislike having flyers through the door. They go straight into the bin and if I catch the company name I make a point of never using them. I just find it so intrusive.

If I want a product or service, I'll source it myself.

maddening Sat 16-Mar-13 13:25:22

I would make sure he was on rated people and my hammer and which have their own local tradesmen site.

And a website

Local paper (usually they put the add on their online site. Also local parish newsletter/mag things and buy and sell.

I think leaflets are not worth it - unless taegeted abd timed right as pp said. The internet and local business pages are where people who want to find a builder go as well as word of mouth.

nancy75 Sat 16-Mar-13 13:27:04

The business I work for does flyers as a last resort, we recently dropped around 7000 flyers and got about 5 replies, once you take into account time spent designing the flyer and printing costs it is not really worth it for us, having a good website brings us in most of our business. If you are going to flyer drop you need to make sure they are well designed, some of the stuff iget through my letterbox is dreadful and makes the company look bad!

maddening Sat 16-Mar-13 13:30:41

Oh and if he has a fb page where he can put pics of his work and maybe run a like competition where for example "click like and you will be entered in to a comp for 2 hours handyman work" or whatever works well with your dh's job. Your dh page will be advertised to their friends who can click to enter the comp. And whoever wins will also possibly become a customer - so 2 hours of putting out leaflets for 1 call or 2 hours work for lots of advertising and a free demo to the lucky winner plus potential word of mouth.

jumpingjackhash Sat 16-Mar-13 13:33:44

Where are you lucy? We're in the process of getting quotes to replace Los sash windows and I'd always rather support a good local, independent business than one of the 'biggies' robbing bastards

TheSecondComing Sat 16-Mar-13 13:43:38

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Don't overdo the FB though. A friend set up a page for her DH's local business and added us all to it. As I live 100s of miles away and don't have any other FB friends in their area, I un-liked it after a few weeks. She spends all her spare time "sharing" the photos on his page now, which not only looks desperate but is tempting me to hide or unfriend her entirely.

TheSeniorWrangler Sat 16-Mar-13 14:34:09

i bin leaflets, we employ people through word of mouth or from getting quotes from ads in the local paper.. i also check websites, and

Gales Sat 16-Mar-13 14:58:41

They do mostly go in the bin, but if i happen to be for someone to do some work and a flyer contains a local address and a local landline number then that would be my first call, unless I had a personal recommendation.

I don't ever give work to anyone who prints only a mobile number in their advertising. Or cold callers.

KatyTheCleaningLady Sat 16-Mar-13 16:09:09

I haven't done this myself, but I have heard it works:

Make up leaflets that say "We have the privilege of serving your neighbour ..... (leave space to write in house number). If you would like to know more about our services... blah, blah, blah..." Then put the leaflets into the letterboxes of five houses to the left, five to the right, and ten across the street. Get the customer's permission first, of course.

Regarding mobile numbers: I got a "virtual land line." It's a local number that diverts automatically to my mobile. That way, I don't have to have a separate landline for business and I have a local number. It can be very affordable. I use

zwischenzug Sat 16-Mar-13 16:13:15

If it makes you feel better I never bin flyers... I recycle them ;)

My Dh has a double glazing business and I've just got 5000 leaflets. I'm hoping to atleast get 1 job from every 100 leaflets. No idea if that's realistic but I'm a positive thinker! That is such a good idea Katy. I think I will get Dh to do that on our next installation.

KatyTheCleaningLady Sat 16-Mar-13 16:20:34

apples, you will only get jobs from people who want their windows done at the time you happen to put the leaflet through and that's only if they actually look at the leaflet. Not to be discouraging or anything. That's just how it goes.

I have gotten jobs from people who came home, picked up my leaflet, and on the way to the recycling bin noticed that their cleaner left streaks on the front of the oven doors AGAIN that day. So, they called me.

Sometimes, people call me weeks after they got the leaflet. Sometimes they got the leaflet from someone else - like they were at their mother's or friend's house when it came through the door.

It's a crap shoot and a numbers game. Since I can get them cheap and I only do the when I've got nothing else going on (and since I enjoy the exercise) it's worth it to me.

Whoknowswhocares Sat 16-Mar-13 16:22:17

I always consider with suspicion any company who leaflet dropped me tbh. Knowing they have such poor take up ratios, I assume that the fact that they have resorted to this method of advertising means that they cannot get business through word of mouth which makes me question their quality and reliability
I know that this is not always the case, especially in today's market, but it is impossible as a consumer to know which leaflet droppers fall into what camp. Therefore I would be less keen to use your OH if I was looking to have work done and he leaflet dropped me......sorry

missmoffatt2705 Sat 16-Mar-13 16:28:38

My dad was a driving instructor and got a job lot of flyers printed up. He would deliver them when he was not busy - ideally as a driving instructor, you want customers fairly close together, due to petrol costs and time spent getting to customers. He only delivered in areas close to where he lived .He did get customers from this and once you have the printed leaflet costs, the only extra cost is your time spent delivering. If you can deliver to houses you can see have box sash windows, you are maximizing your chances. One leaflet might draw in a new client who will recommend you to others needing the same service.

KatyTheCleaningLady Sat 16-Mar-13 16:31:12

I've noticed something - and other cleaners have had the same experience: Older people are more likely to respond to leaflets. Younger people are more likely to use Google. Someone told me that the older generation is more likely to "buy at the doorstep" and be comfortable with leaflet drops.

My leaflet customers are more likely to be elderly people living in modest, decent 2-bed semis. I have leafleted affluent areas full of large family homes and gotten no calls. Like, there's a particular lovely village near me that I leafleted heavily. Got more than half the village. Nobody called. But, I have gotten THREE calls from the part of town I didn't leaflet from my Google ad. So, maybe what Whoknowswhocares says was in effect: the people who got a leaflet were turned off at my seeming desperation.

But, you have to remember that there are all sorts of people and they all respond to different things. One person will Google and another will use a leaflet and another will only go by personal recommendation (I get those, too.) When you're trying to build up your business, try a bit of everything. I even carry business cards and strike up conversations with people and give them my card. I'm friendly and likeable and I don't think I'm making a bad impression but I have to say that nobody has yet hired me based on that.

I also have signs on my vehicle. My son pointed out that people are unlikely to write down my phone number as they're driving around but I said that the point is people recognizing my name. Later, they may get a leaflet or Google for a cleaner and my name could ring a bell. And, of course, the neighbours will see my car in the drives of the houses I clean.

It's a belt and braces approach.

I will probably be fully booked by summer. My husband may join me then and then we'll need to get more clients. People come and go. I don't know if I'll always need to leaflet and I may even stop paying for Google adwords from time to time, but you have to be ready to advertise at short notice and leaflets are a good way of doing that.

oldraver Sat 16-Mar-13 16:31:17

It wouldn't work for me as I would see it as an intrusion...we get many flyers and charity bags through the door and it pisses me off.

I'm not averse to flyers as I have flyered in the past in the cold and wind and rain but would never push one onto someone who didnt want one. I would pick up a flyer if I saw one in a shop or whatever

Hopasholic Sat 16-Mar-13 16:37:06

For me it would depend on the actual leaflet. I'm put off if there's only a mobile contact number and would be more likely to use the company if they were FMB or similar. (I have sash windows FWIW) and if I wanted any work done, I would probably keep hold of the leaflet. So it's probably worth it as you're targeting the right houses. Alternatively pay a pre/teenager a fiver to do an hours worth!

Lucyellensmum95 Sat 16-Mar-13 17:09:02

Thanks for the responses - to be fair the flyers are costing next to nothing as I am doing them myself but i tend to feel the way you all feel and never really pay any heed to them. But as its "free" advertising, i will give it a go.

We don't tend to have parish magazines though, we will often get something poked through our door like a directory but they want ridiculous amounts of money to advertise in them.

Might try local paper and the website is the next thing on my to do list.

I agree about word of mouth and in seven years this is the first time we have advertised. This is for two reasons - one, the work is not coming in as fast as we would like, although we do get alot of repeat custome etc and two, DP is wanting to develop the window side of things.

I am going to put a website together but am concerned about the "SEO" that everyone keeps going on about - our budget is limited to say the very least but really only want it to back up any advertising that we do so that people can see the work that DP has done - he really is very good!

RainbowsFriend Sat 16-Mar-13 17:13:00

I bin leaflets - they annoy me intensely, and in fact I make a point of NOT using companies that "leafletter".

I go with word of mouth, websites or the local free mag.

I did our double glazing website and then registered on all the free local directories. I have no idea about "SEO" and stuff like that but so many people have found us via google so I must have done something right.

How are you doing the leaflets yourself? Are you printing them on normal paper?

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