I have been in the industry for about 13 years as a wholesale supplier (manager). In that time I have helped many contractors figure out problems, and have learned from their and my mistakes and victories over numerous problems. After twenty years the store is closing and i am going to start this business in about a month or two, my main business will be fountain installation and repair, I want the sprinkler and landscape lighting to cover overhead and more for the new business. As far as technical skills and know how I am good, and I will have a descent customer base, however i am open to any advertising advice you may have. I just want to know from someone outside my area that has tried different techniques and how they have worked or failed for them. Mailers, radio ads, web site, yard signs, television, etc.. what have you found to be the best bang for the buck.
Because you will not be doing lawn care/landscaping, my first approach would be contacting those that do. Go to the city hall and buy a list of companies that have landscape licenses. Call those guys up and offer them 10% per referral. Most won't call you back, but a couple of them will load you up with work. Before I moved from where I live now, I had two landscapers that gave me 50 hours of work a week!
The next thing you need is a website. More specifically, a Word Press blog that you can turn "static" later. 67% of all U.S. adults research the internet before calling a service business. Buy a domain that relates to your work, such as
BostonFountainAndSprinkler.com or whatever city you want to rank for.
I pay zero for advertising, everybody finds me online.
It's easier to get on the first page of Google for a regional search than most people realize.