Having served in Iraq last year ive started my own company

#1
I was silly enough to have volunteered for Iraq last year and now having come back ive started my own company. What i'm looking for is some good ideas on how to get some more clients for my company. My company website is

Manchester Domestic Cleaners

So far ive got clients by leafleting, advertising in shop windows and sending information packs to old people's community centres (old people need cleaners). I'm considering advertising on Yell.com but there's a lot of competition on there so im not too sure if it's worth it.

Chris
 
#2
How is your company different to all the others?

msr
 
#3
Knowing one of the big cleaners in Manchester,you arent going to get far.
 
#4
I have one suggestion - tidy up your sites spelling mistakes, and then you won't come across as somebody who is trying to impress their probation officer...
 
#5
Seeing your catchment area,id head south,who in Gorton wants their house cleaning at £10 a hour???? Ummm or Eastlands or here in sunny openshaw.
 
#6
not much of an idea just a comment to say well done m8 for starting you own company , but will it not take a lot of your time up orwill you still manage to do the ta aswel
 
#7
Your site seems very basic - it needs completely rewording, as the style and use of language does not come across as very professional. You also mention some stuff that you don't really have to mention - it's ok to say the cleaners are insured, but you don't need to say "in case anything goes wrong". That thought shouldn't even be allowed to enter a potential clients head.

Also, I don't know if you really need to have staff photos on there - as it shows you are only a small firm. If you don't put photos up, then that will leave people guessing as to how big you are. Same goes for letting people know when you set up. If the website is done properly, you can create the illusion that you are a pretty big firm.

Also, have you considered putting up a page of testimonials to say how reliable you are?
 
#9
Is this what you did on Ops in the Sandpit, or is that just an extremely tenuos link to try and drum up some support on this site?

Still, you could always inport LECs from Basrah, pay them peanuts and sit there with your feet up counting the profits.....
 
#10
Agree with the above comments, website needs polishing, pardon the pun! the text could be more concise and as said before, lose the staff pics, keep it vague. also, don't mention on the booking page that there may not be someone to take the call, let them find out for themselves with an answerphone, or get the calls redirected to your mobile.
other than that, good luck!
 
#11
just a thought, have you tried builders? all the new developments in the country bring in contract cleaners to go over new houses just before handing over to the new owners, give them a try
 
#12
Good on you fella for going it on your own and actually attempting to earn money without earning those above you 5, 6 or 7 times the amount you earn working for them, as is the case for many contracts in Iraq.

Have you actually thought about approaching the Military, use the fact that you have served etc. maybe Officers would like their Quarters cleaned or Pads on the patch...

Other than that, why not make your Company "THE" cleaning Company that specialises in the more rural outlying areas?

Marketing is a difficult subject, but if you get an excellent Flyer/Leaflet designed (make it humorous but at the same time giving a reason WHY people would choose you above other competitors, maybe offer them the first time or couple of times FREE, okay you will get your cheap skates but you WILL also get return customers, think of something Very Different that you can offer alongside the cleaning that will make up potential customers minds to use your Company, maybe think of a theme i.e. the "James Bond" of cleaners and come in the relevant attire! it sounds silly but its the unusual that will attract and lets face it, cleaning services are not the most interesting item to offer) you then need to get your gucchi Flyer in windows in every village/small town you can think of.

The alternative is using Google Adwords, a lot of people will look for cleaning services online, but a lot of Companies don't know about Adwords especially that you can actually close your viewable audience right down to selective areas within U.K.!

Hope this generates a couple of ideas for you as bizarre as they sound! 8)
 
#13
Have also just checked your site..... Ouch! in all honesty it looks very amateurish, no one in their right mind would take you seriously looking at a site like that! if you are serious about a Business then invest to progress, get your site designed and built by a Professional and get some qulaity photos on there of your top notch cleaning machinery at work... AND GET A LOGO DESIGNED!!! you can find Website Designers and Logo Designers everywhere online, it should have been one of the first things you did.
 
#14
Good luck to you. My stint in the sandpit gave me the chance to look at things from a different perspective. I identified an opportunity to put certain overseas based service seekers in direct contact with specialist service providers based in the UK and cutting out several middle men from the chain.

I did very well out of it.
 
#15
Do you have all the equipment required for cleaning and being able to provide to companies - such as toilet paper hand towels soap disps!!!! I only ask because when i renewed the cleaning contract for the company i work for - i was surprised a few could not accomodate and asked for us to provide!!!

You could also do with changing your website around - looks too much like a kids website with all the rainbow colours - im not knocking you pal but if you want people to notice then you need to be more prof so you will have to make it look the part.

I can help you out with this if you need any help - designed a few before as an amateur and so dont even charge just like to help my comrades out.
 

maninblack

LE
Book Reviewer
#17
You need to utilise that concept of "added value."

Think about the service that you offer and how to expand it via the Major Focal Point of the business for instance;

You have a key to the house so how can you utilise the posession of the key to keep them focussed on you whilst earning extra money?

The obvious answer is feed their fish/cat/iguana whilst they are on holiday or on a trip; this is a service that most cleaners do not offer, it costs you little to provide but at £8.00 per day for a cattery you can easily sell this as stress free living for Tiddles whilst they are away compared with the stress of delivery and collection from a cattery.

Offer a marked van and unmarked van option. Some customers like to show off to the local area that they have a cleaner by having a marked van turn up. others like to hide the fact they are away by having an unmarked van provide the cat feeding service.

Think outside the box, you are not a cleaning company you are a daily or weekly service provider to their home.
 
B

Biscuits_AB

Guest
#18
Get shot of the history mate, you don't need it, no bugger reads it and if they do, they'll see that you set up in 2007 and as this is only April 2007, they'll think that you're an amateur. Have look at some other company websites (Molly Maids, Office Angels, etc) and then pay someone to do you a professional site, just don't mention the start up date as it will only prove that you are not yet established. Nice idea in about two decades time when you are the CEO of a world wide company, but not now.

The 'Where we clean' bit is a bit of a naff title. In fact, the website is amateur and it shows. Your Company secretary looks like she's trying to suppress a fart. I'd be careful about the photographs as well, from a staff personal safety aspect. You never know who's employing you.

Have you sent some flyers around local businesses? Advertised in shop windows, local freebie rags? Wouldn't cost much to get a small jingle on local radio either. You may have already done this. I don't know as I haven't read your site through fully, as to be frank it's dull. You really need to get a pro to work on that.

Have you compared your prices with the bigger firms? Don't try to undercut them thinking that you'll look more attractive. Match them. They are obviously getting people to pay the amounts they ask, so why shouldn't you ask for the same?

Good luck mate, I hope you do really well, but my advice, for what it's worth, would be that you should stick to managing a cleaning firm and leave the advertising to the professionals. It will be more expensive, but the idea is to bring in custom. I don't think that money well spent on good adverting is wasted.

F*cking great that you're taking the initiative though.
 
#19
Another suggestion - contact some of the nursing agencies in your area. They often look after vulnerable clients who are unable to look after themselves - that includes cleaning etc, an aspect the nursing agencies do not normally cover.

The agencies might be able to pass on your details to some of the clients. Or maybe they may even be able to come to an arrangement with Social Services and subcontract the work out to you. Also consider contacting Social Services yourself.

The pet feeding service mentioned above is a great idea, too.
 
#20
Oven cleaning is a good idea to get the customers in, the company who work at our place started off like that,just cleaning housewifes ovens now they do major contracts,new builds in salford,factories on trafford park, but they started small,good idea,spend money on that website though,it will probably put more people off.

Your dads first name aint Steve btw???
 

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