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Pondtent's Weekly Marketing Tips

Marketing Tip #3: Garden Centers

This week I decided to create my winter networking list.  These are the people and companies I want to reach out to during the off season.  I might not get to everyone, but I like to set reasonable goals.  For example, one goal is to go to 10 garden centers each month this January and February.

Here's a trick of mine-- I call the garden centers in advance and ask them if they do pond cleanings and installations.  If they say yes, I cross them off the list.  If they say no, I add them to my prospective marketing list.  This way we're not wasting time going to places that already offer services like ours.  


When you go:  It's helpful to have materials with you when going to the garden centers.  I had a rack card made that has our contact information, simplified key words of what we do and photos of our work on it. A rack card is a small brochure card with print on one side that fits in a generic brochure holder. (see photo at the top of the page for ours).  You can design and print one at

I bring those and a brochure holder with me.  If nothing else, we can ask to put our brochures out in their store and instead of handing them a bunch of papers, I already have a way for them to display them simply and neatly.

How I found the centers I want to go to: I found my current list of garden center prospects  by purchasing a list.  I used, to buy the list, but there are quite a few companies that do the same thing.  I put all of my specific search parameters in, for example, specifying that each store must do over $500,000 per year but less than $10,000,000. This removes the Home Depots and other huge places from the list.  I also look for stores within a certain mile radius and with more than one employee. 

I purchased a list of 79 names for $99.00 from  I will now go through them all to find the ones that seem the best fit.  Those are the ones  I contact and visit.

I'll keep you posted as we go out each month!

What are your winter networking goals?

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