It’s Cinco de Mayo, which for many Americans means an excuse to indulge in some margarita specials. However, if Pinterest is any indicator, a lot of people will celebrate at home, inviting friends and family over for cocktails and Mexican food. Any excuse for a party, right?
It started me thinking about the way adults celebrate now. I’ve been invited to and attended far more themed parties as an adult than during my childhood years. With the steady growth in popularity of outdoor living spaces, I don’t think I’m the only one. Landscapers interested in adding services to their portfolio have been taking advantage of the popularity of outdoor kitchens for years; however, selling the outdoor living concept is more of a big picture (and long-term) story.
Do you know which of your clients are the social butterflies? Cast a critical eye over their outdoor living areas and see what changes would benefit them with respect to not only enjoying family time outside, but allow them to enjoy neighborhood block parties, sporting events and yes, Cinco de Mayo. Here are some potential upgrades:
Unique fire features
Convince your customers to think out of the box, or at least beyond the fire pit. In a time when anyone can go buy a fire pit at their local big box store for $99, showing your clients they can have a fire feature unique to them will allow them to distinguish their space and wow their guests. Consider linear units, combined fire and water features and custom fireplaces with personalized elements.
Upgraded water features
The client may not have room for or be interested in a swimming pool; however, a small water feature provides a soothing backdrop for entertaining. If they have an existing water feature in place, tie it in to the living space with new pavers, updated seating and refreshed pathways.
Anyone can string party lights, but it takes careful thought and planning to create a mood, particularly with an outdoor space. When illuminating pathways, careful placement will allow you to showcase the beauty of the client’s landscape and show off color and texture. For the best results, use a less-is-more approach and remember to light different levels – overhead, table height and ground height.
Rotating plant material
For customers who entertain frequently, they won’t always want the space to look the same. Put them on a seasonal plan that will allow you to change out their plantings on a regular basis. That way, they can enjoy their mint juleps on Derby Day to a backdrop of spring blooms, and their hay bales for fall festivals won’t be wedged against the remains of summer flowers.
Knowing your clients well will help you suggest the ideas that will resonate with them. Whatever approach you take, having the ability to turn single project or weekly mowing customers into long-term clients (and friends) will allow you to grow your business and flex your creative muscles. Who knows? They may even invite you to their next big bash.