$155K - First year of pressure washing
Interview with Heath Felps of Texas Pressure Washing
9 November, 2021 by
$155K - First year of pressure washing
Dirt Killer Kranzle USA Atlantic Pressure Washers, Michael Zittel DK

On Monday November 29th 2021 at 6pm we premiered a 45 minute interview with Heath Felps, the CEO of Texas-PressureWashing.com. The interview is a deeper dive into the where, what and WHY Heath started his power washing company. It is a casual interview which has a ton of pro tips that come up naturally during the course of the conversation.  So subscribe to the Dirt Killer YouTube channel, grab a beer, pen and paper and get ready for a really interesting video interview with Heath Felps.



Transcript of interview with Heath Felps : Texas Pressure Washing

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (00:00):

Hi everybody. I'm Mike Zittel with Dirt Killer. I am Dirt Killer marketing manager. We are also Kranzle USA and Atlantic Pressure Washers. And so today we have Heath Felps and I'm going to let him introduce himself. Go ahead.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (00:14):

Hi, I'm Heath Felps the CEO of Texas Pressure Washing, and I also am the author of Pressure Washing 101 guide, how to start your business.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (00:24):

Cool. So everybody, I met, Heath through one of the Facebook groups. He had posted this really, really honest summary of his first year in business. The, the hardcore numbers, you know it was like 155 K in revenue at about 135 K in spend. And just broke it down and, and very few people do that. So I found it very interesting, intriguing, especially for a first year business owner. But obviously if you're you, you don't come to this from a total, you know, 18 year old, fresh out of high school or still in high school, starting your business. So why don't we start there with, where, what did you do before this and what prompted you to get into this industry?

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (01:15):

So I was, I'm retired Navy. I was the 20 year submariner, fast attack sailor navigation specifically, I retired as a chief petty officer. I spent 13 of my 20 years as a chief petty officer. So, you know, like upper mid-level management, but specifically my job put me in all the top tier meetings, my entire career. So just from that standpoint of like how to run things, that was just pretty easy. I think you have to adapt that, but that's, that's where I started. And then when COVID hit they sent, they sent it most of us home. So I was at home from pretty much March until August, and I just studied and crammed like 16 hours a day research. And I really learned everything on the PWNA forum. The idea for this 2016,

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (02:13):

And I just want to interrupt there. So, but so you you started learning, but what, why pressure washing?

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (02:21):

So in 2016, I was sitting in a pool and Cancun with one of my close friends that I'd met in Cancun years ago. And he actually is a Houston guy, which back then I had no idea if I was gonna move to Houston. He's a chemical and gas engineer and he said, Hey, man, I started pressure washing on Fridays because he only works four days a week. And I was like, why would you do that? Like, you make a ridiculous amount of money. He's like, well, I wanted fun money. And I was like, okay. And you know, like he's like guilt free money to spend. And I'm like, okay. So I didn't think anything of it. And then the next year we met in Cancun again, and we talk throughout the year. And, but when we talk, we weren't talking about that stuff. And then I was like, Hey, how's the business going? He goes, dude, I made 42,000 last year. And I only worked March to October one, you know, four days a month. And I was like, what?

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (03:16):

So it was like in the back of my brain since 2018, when I knew that I was gonna, like, I was starting to consider retirement cause I could've stayed in longer. But I said to him I am really curious about this. Can I pick your brain? Because hold on, I know you well enough now to know what's coming. And he just sent me his books like straight up. He was like, here's my books. That way you don't have to ask me a thousand questions. And I was like, oh wow, your numbers are super real. Like you, you probably undersold me what you're doing here. And he was like, yeah, you know, I've upgraded all my equipment. And then he sent me a website and he said, this is where I learned everything. And so I got busy with the Navy. My last deployment was like super busy.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (04:03):

So like almost for an entire year, I just tabled everything, but it was in my head. And so in 2019, I was like, Hey, I want to do this to my best friend who is also retiring. And that's what are you thinking? He said, yeah man. And he knew that he knew the guy too. He had, he was in the pool for one of the conversations. So he knew the guy. And when we were forming the company, it was like two of our other close friends are also Navy, you know, or one of them is from Texas. I had known him since sixth grade. He was like, I want in. I was like, why do you want in? Like, you're super, super well off. And he's like, bro, we've been friends for almost 30 years. He's like, I, if you're in it, I want to be in it. One second. This is a customer delivering a check. Hey, sorry about that. It was the the painter delivered a check.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (04:54):

Oh cool. Hold on a second. Josh Wagner joined us. This is he he started a company last year. I mentioned him to you on Friday. I think when we talked and Keith was just explaining how he got started and quick backstory was in the Navy, had a friend who was doing this on the side and making money about to retire, decides to do it. Some of his friends jumped on board. Right. Is that right?

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (05:20):

Yep. That's right. It was four of us own the company and right now there's three of us that are actively here running it together.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (05:28):

Okay. cool. So you were saying about the the guy who just was like, well, if you're in it, I'm in it. So it sounds kind of cool.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (05:38):

Yeah, he was basically like and we've, we've stayed close over the years and he was just like, you know, I want to jump in on this. I was like, all right, cool. And he, you know, he lives in South Carolina and he's worked for Google, but super, super reliable dude. Like when we were putting the truck together, the Navy at that time was not allowing any leave one of our partners got actively deployed as a reservist. So one guy couldn't leave the island Hawaii. And the other guy was in Djibouti. So I moved to Texas, even though I'm from here, I moved to Houston where I'm not from I'm from north of Austin. So I didn't like know anybody to help me like lift these engines and stuff onto the truck. I mean, I, you know, I'm a friendly dude. I like, but my buddy came down that co-owner came down and helped me install all the big stuff on the truck.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (06:25):

So that's how we got started. And our first employee, Mindy, who everybody knows is the flatwork Queen. You've seen her own videos. I'm sure. She came down here in August and also helped me build the trucks. So we basically built a truck, the two of us from August to September, our first house wash, it was October 8th. And I would say that no builds should take six weeks, but it was a service body. And I was trying to figure that out to make it all work. And it was my first build ever, you know, where as our trailer build took two days, like slept it all together.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (07:00):

So your first build now, Hey, before you did the build, had you ever done even any pressure washing?

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (07:08):

I had never fired a pressure washer up in my life.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (07:10):

And then you built this truck and

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (07:14):

They got, a minute, five and a half gallon a minute and an air powered software system. And yeah, all of it was like figure it out. And it came together. You know, like the truck turns heads. It's, it's well known in the company that did the wrap job was great. Big fan of wraps. I seem them all the time. I see these super cool ones, I think they're, they make you stand out.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (07:38):

So I just want to wrap my head around this. He's never done pressure washing before you, you, you and your buddies get together, decide you're gonna do this. One of which has, you know, the pressure washing thing on the side. You build this, this kick ass truck and then you get a job and then you go out and do the job.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (07:56):

Yeah. Our first job was a 5,000 square feet roof and about a 1200 square foot driveway. And it was for a friend and they were very excited. Longtime friend had known each other since high school. They just happened to live in Houston. They happen to live seven minutes from me. So it was like really easy, you know, go over there. So we do that job and the neighbor hires us to clean their roof. And then the other neighbor hires us to clean their roof, their house

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (08:24):

Referral business.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (08:26):

And so our first week was like, this is the best ever, because I was like at $3,000, $3,000 in like two days. So we were like, this is the coolest thing ever. Like we can do this. And then, you know, it's funny because you get to build business. So in our first five months we only did like 14 grand because we weren't advertising. And I, my personal opinion on this, and I still agree with this statement is that like, without having any reviews, throwing money at advertising will not give you the ROI. If you have even like 25 star Google reviews, that's my personal opinion on it. And will you get business? Yes, but the majority of our customers say they saw our advertisements on Facebook, which is the only paid advertising. We do, we do Next Door. And but those are that you get two free posts like every month or something like that.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (09:26):

We do paid on Facebook. We tried Google, but Google works, Google ads work. But in Houston, the market is so incredibly competitive. If you're not spending like 13, 14, $1,500 a month, you're, you're not going to be like up there. And Google tells you that when you go sign up for it, they're like, if you don't spend this much money, you're not going to be seen. So we, we tried that. And then what's interesting is I have friends that run Google ads very well. Like they crush it to the point where they're getting, they'll get so busy, they'll turn off like either Facebook advertising or Google ads for just a little bit, because they'll lose business. So they came in, you know, or we did like a video call. They helped me set up my Google ad words and they walked away. Like you're using a different animal.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (10:17):

I'm like, I tried to tell you guys, I was like, it's just, it's just the, the, the, the results of the metrics did not track like either they're cities and they're in smaller markets. And so that was a very good learning experience for all three of us. Now, Facebook is where I was experimenting. I tried boosted posts. I tried targeted posts. I tried everything and I was getting nothing. And then I had a friend who was like, it's pay to play, man. You get to spend money. I was like, okay, that makes sense. So I did a boosted post for like a $200 budget. I got absolutely zero interaction from it. I was like, okay.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (10:48):

Oh, hold on. I just want to kind of guide this, that be more cause I do. I do want to talk about marketing little bit more, but I just wanted a couple other starter questions. And that's really great that you shared that. I just want to segment that a little bit, cause it was a little too, you know, and if we keep going down that road, we're going to be talking about J-rods in a second.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (11:14):

I own a quad rod. I don't use this.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (11:16):

Okay. So you know, worked in the industry for so what what did you start with, what was your initial capital investment? Excuse me, while I cough,

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (11:35):

I want to say out of the gate, we're at like 25 K and I mean, you know, most people don't start lke we started with four people to split that it's almost significant, it's like a regular startup, but that was for like the website. We had markate, we had search right away. And you know, we, we started with an eight gallon, a minute, 3,500 PSI pressure washer and also a five and a half. And you know, for electric reels, that was kind of like the, do we do this or not? Because it was like doubles your costs. And I, that

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (12:20):

Was a total

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (12:22):

We're going for it. I was like, we're a hundred percent doing this. Cause I was like, you know what? I've got shoulder issues. They're not bad, bad, but I've got shoulder issues. And I was like, my other partner's shoulder issues is like, I don't care if we're not working the trucks. I'm not dealing with non electric reels So both our truck and our trailer have lifts. So I would say that like knowing what I know now and like how to approach this, I could put that truck together for about $15K like outfit and that, and the trailer is probably about $13.5K Including the trailer. And that's what two pressure washers and the trailer has a P 40 gas soft wash system on it. And 4 electric reels. Wow.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (13:05):

Yeah. That's a pretty good setup at that much Wags. What is your, what are your thoughts on that?

Josh Wagner : Retail and Service Manager (13:13):

What, what made you pick the equipment that you get so solely because we see people literally start, they, they get the idea. I want to start a pressure washing business. We're going to do this with a buddy and no one instantly goes for an eight and a five right off the bat, let alone eight and five plus an air diaphragm set up. So what was your reasoning on picking the equipment as you have to get to that point

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (13:34):

Research. And like I told, you know, you know, Mike at the beginning, I said, Hey, you know, you have to understand what your time is worth. I knew before we did anything, what it costs me to run that truck. And for one day, you know, ballpark, I think we came out to like $468. So say $500 a day to roll a truck out with two employees, roughly making $20 an hour. So I knew that if I'm going to roll the truck out for $500 a day, just to break even and eat food, not even pay myself, really, if I'm paying two employees, but say I'm an employee, but I needed $200 an hour. And if I worked $200 an hour and I'm, I'm actually washing for eight hours, that's great, but you're not going to really get to wash for eight hours, your travel time on multiple jobs like that.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (14:23):

People don't take that into account. So like all of this research beforehand made me realize, and that's what set our budget. Because we did all the research and then had a talk and I laid out all my data. This is what I think I said, the efficiency of an eight gallon a minute is going to be huge in our market. Almost every job we have is involves flat work, cleaning a driveway with the eight while washing a house with a five and a half is always the way to go for us. And that, that, that research led me to understand one, we have a little bit higher growth in Houston than some places because there's places like Missouri will, they'll go wash with an eight and they'll be pulling like 0.7, 5% sh. And they're just like smoking all their growth, their stuff in Houston.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (15:07):

If I hit with my eight and I'm pulling like with a 2.3 injector, it's like, yeah, I don't care. The green stays. But if you hit it with the five and a half on a 2.1 injector, you're pulling like close to like 1.2, 5% and it just melts. And so that little bit of difference, like truly will change dramatically. Your jobs is like our aid is exclusively for flatwork or renting. Like if we have to watch it that we will, but it's just like whatever. And the same thing we found was that when I came up with that budget build that I posted about that was purely a helping a guy get started paper design on how I would do this. Looking at like I had the Honda. Now I know, and I run the Honda with the same pump is the predator I have.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (15:51):

There is a real horsepower bump from the predator, sorry, it's real. Honda's not lying. When they say that's an 11 horsepower motor and the predators are 13. Like it's a true difference. Like that predator 420 cleans almost as well as our Honda, 3690 with an UDL [Unintelligible] or eight gallons a minute pump, like it's just efficient. So, but that research led me to decide that four gallon a minute was not, that was not the case. Cause I'd read guy after guy, after guy that had said on the forums, I started with a four, I went to a five and a half. Then I went to a seven or I went to the straight to an eight and they were like, I wish I'd never waited. And so it's like, we have the capital and we would, we were going all in and we're like, we're buying a service truck.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (16:32):

We're going to wrap it. You know, the wrap was like $1,800. I'm gonna to spend $1,800 on a wrap. I'm never going to own a four gallon, a minute fresh washer. So, but I think it depends on where you're starting. Like if you approach this from a planned business that you're investing in, it absolutely makes sense to buy the most efficient equipment you can. If your back is against the wall and you got fired because COVID jacked up your entire industry and you have no job market in your area or there's like no immediate future, I a hundred percent agree that you should go out and you should buy like a DeWalt from four gallon a minute and you should start washing driveways. Because you can immediately recoup your, your income if your back's against the wall. Like Any, any,

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (17:29):

But yeah, I'm not, it's not even necessarily that it's just Dwalt in particular at our retail shop. We worried the Walt service provider. And was it last summer wags? I mean every day somebody was coming in who had just bought it, the wall at home Depot blew the pump because it was a piece o shit

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (17:48):

And we'd say, A's pumps.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (17:54):

And we said, just, just take it back, get your money back and come back here and we'll get you set up. So whether, you know, and it doesn't have to be Dirt Killer obviously, but you know, if you're going to get into the business, you're going to try to be in the business and stay in the business. We always recommend you know, spend a little bit extra money if you've got it to get a commercial grade machine. Cause it's kind of just save you time and money in the long run. You know, we, we

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (18:17):


Josh Wagner : Retail and Service Manager (18:20):

Oh, like that, that mentality that you have one year into this industry. And that's what it sounded like Mike said you were at. That is the difference between some dudes starting a side hustle. And the guy that's an entrepreneur is going to like make this business into something. Cause there's certainly people that there's like a pressure washes, a pressure washer. They jump in and they're, they're at literally step one for the next five years because they don't do research. They don't have the ability to see past, well, this pressure washer is always broke down. So I don't understand why it's been more, a bigger one, but everything you just described is literally a ten-year mindset like shoved into one. And that difference between the guys are gonna make it in the industry and turn their business into something versus the guys that are just starting it. And they're going to be the $99 Chuck in a truck down the road.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (19:04):

I think that, so you, you meet guys that can start that way and then realize that there is money to be made and realize that they are selling their selves short because at the time, you know, like I'm wasting my time. And I see that, like I was watching a driveway once and a guy rolled up in a really nice truck and pulled out a little push lawnmower and was mowing the lawn. And it was obvious it wasn't his house. And I walked over to him and said, Hey man, what's going on? And my name's Steve Felps. And I was learning company shirt in the big truck. And I said, we're watching this driver cross street. I see you mowing this lawn, And I said I help guys all the time. I'm not saying don't do lawn care, but like, you know, how much are you making for this job? And he's like, I dunno, like 40 bucks. And I was like, you're gonna be here, what an hour and a half, two hours. And he's like, yeah, probably it was a pretty big yard. And I was like, well, I just watched that driveway for $300 and I'm done and I've been here an hour. And he was like,

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (20:00):

And I was like, would you, would you like my card? And he was like, no, I'm good. And I was like, okay, cool. But I mean, Hey, I was like,

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (20:13):

You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (20:17):

Yeah. And I was like, it's cool. But I was at a Wash Mart event on Friday and we went to happy hour afterwards. And one of the guy came guys, came up to me and you know, we were watching the Astros play and I'd already been drinking. So we'd had a few drinks in us. And this guy was really funny. I really liked this guy. And he goes, I got your book man. And I was like, oh cool, thanks. I hope it helps. He goes "F" your book

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (20:45):

Just happened to be there. And he was like crying and I, I, I, he wasn't being hostile, but he goes, he has a straight face. He is, I'm just playing. He like, for real, like, you're, my wife bought me your book. And six weeks went by before I finally opened it. And he goes, your pricing changed in my life. And he's like, I'm going to get out of the oil industry into pressure washing because your pricing chapter made me realize that I can do more of this. And now this guy out prices me. And he's like way south of me, you know, he's in an area where I wouldn't even service if they called me. Right. But I was pumped. I was like, we had a good laugh that I made a video record thing F my book, and then we need it.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (21:30):

None of us can keep a straight face. Like we're all laughing. But like, it was really funny. So that's a good example. Like this is a dude doing a side hustle and he was charging dirt cheap prices and just make an extra, a little extra cash. And now he has completely shifted his mindset. And he's like, what would you do if you had a regular job and you were going to get out of that job, what would you do? I said, well, one, it depends on if your wife works and if your wife's income can support your family, the risks I would take. But I was like, so just ballpark what I told him, as I said, I would save for, to pay all of my bills, pure survival for six months, put that in savings. Then I would save double what it would cost to replace all my gear in a crisis in your company, business account, six months, personal savings. And then I would take and save for like, say you spend $4,000 on your rig. I would earn another 4,000 in my business account before I would quit my full-time job, especially when your full-time job is probably six figures, because it was like, you need to understand that, like, until you are established the you're, you're not going to just like go out and crush it. Now you may start in the busy season and it may be like for

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (22:46):

Three or four months

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (22:47):

Easy, but it depends. It just, everything depends, depends on your areas of your market. Like, I was like, that's how I would jump into it. But I think that

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (22:57):

You know, one thing that I've seen being in the industry from a marketing stand point of view, and just for everybody's reference, I didn't come from the pressure washing industry. I started with Dirt Killer a couple of years back you know, graphics, marketing video.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (23:12):

Oh, you're that guy. I'm that guy.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (23:15):

I do, do have a pressure washer. I have a pressure washer that, although I got rid my old pressure washer and have a new one

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (23:24):

If it's a Sun Joe, we're

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (23:25):

Done here. No, no, it's not a Sun Joe. It's a, it's a, Kranzle now. Because I'm not out hustling, I'm just doing stuff around the house. So but point is just that I, I kinda, you know, on the business side of things, you know, pressure washing having your is, let's say I'm a potential customer. That's a service. That is, is, is a luxury. And the people can have who are for the people who can afford to pay you to come and do it are often the luxury shoppers,

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (24:02):

Right. You should target people with disposable income, right?

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (24:06):

And if you go into cheap, you won't get the job. You might think, Hey, I'm going to be the $99 guy. And it's like, well, man, you go, you go get the $99 clients. The $999 client is a way better client, you know, generally speaking. They can, some luxury markets can sometimes be very uptight, but in general. They just want it done. They want it done. Right. And they want to say, yep, it looks good. You did what you said. Here's your check.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (24:34):

250,000 to 800,000 is my

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (24:36):

Market. Is that who you target?

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (24:38):

If it's above 800,000, I will flat turn that down and refer to this point. It is never worth the headache ever. Not, not a single time. I,

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (24:48):

When you say market, you mean that's your income demographic that you're targeting or the home value. Okay. So those neighborhoods and you source that through like Zillow or something to just see what the price ranges and like yep. That's the audience.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (25:02):

I use Zillow for a quick square footage. So you always have that rough home value. And I'll say I've only had one good experience with a street that was million dollar homes. We did it for a friend and she is extremely wealthy and we watched her personal home and her neighbors hired us. And then like, we couldn't get off that street. And every home on that street was like $1.2 - $5 million. And now it was a good experience. Like we crushed everything about it and we never had any issues and we watched the monster homes. So like, that was really cool, but in general, we're like, we don't, we don't go for that. So it was good. It was a good exposure and good experience because, you know, those are probably all be repeat customers, but I've had some really rough experiences just quoting stuff to where it was like a complete turnoff and this just not for me and I, and I think there's guys, I have a friend that he exclusively focuses on those neighborhoods and high end and like, he's like the most stressed out, dude. I know, like he gets paid a lot, but I was just like, it's not worth it for me, man. I'm, I'm I'm far happier going in and banging out the $400 job in an hour and then leaving or like you get the customer.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (26:19):

It's pretty, pretty good money. Okay. Let's see.

Josh Wagner : Retail and Service Manager (26:26):

Well, just before we skip topics just because you guys both touched on it, it's amazing. The difference between a customer and a client. You know, you get dozens of customers that call, I mean, probably every single week, depending on what side, your businesses that you can weed out instantly because of how you're talking to her, how they're to you initially, because of, like you said, size of their house or the quality of their house, and what did it, you know, what areas that they're at, maybe you have clients, those are the guys that you're specifically targeting them. And you specifically want them as customers and clients, because you're going to see them every year. I don't know what your wash is it might be every two years, something like that. And it takes, it takes a good window of time to one get in the mindset that not all money is good money. Like it touched on. And two, once you get that established business, a lot of things seem to drop. Like, you know, once you get to a point where you have making up something a hundred houses every month or something like that, you're going to get so many of them call them back in the next few years. As long as your clients are all in the same mindset as you are, that you don't have to spend that X dollar amount on marketing like you were talking

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (27:23):


Josh Wagner : Retail and Service Manager (27:25):

Unless you're scaling to a ridiculous size most people choose not to do on purpose. It's a whole different mindset in that you want that repeat clientele that you're going to get on a regular basis. You've got to find your sweet spot for your business.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (27:36):

I agree. I think that a lot of people are asking me about my success and I'm like, look, hard work, luck, research, planning, tracking your metrics. But like also I didn't live here and choose to start a business. I moved here because of the median home value and the median income. My area is double the median income of Houston, and it has double the home value of Houston. So the disposable income is here and the general area that I watched and I'll watch greater Houston, especially with two rigs, but like the general area that I'm in is a cone of like 60% of the wealth ofHouston is in a, in a cone from me outwards with easy access to the highways. So like my planning for that was like deep. And, you know, I understood that where I lived had access to, you know, oh, Houston, traffic's bad. I can tell you that maybe less than one hand where I've ever sat in traffic in Houston, because I have access to like all the major roads from here and, you know, even the toll ways. So,

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (28:49):

So the quick summary there to send that note in marketing and choice and so forth, as you put a lot of time into thinking about your business, who your audience is and how you're going to best serve them and capitalize and your, your efforts. And that's why you started with an eight gallon per minute versus a 4,000, et cetera. That, which is really cool. And that's, that's why you're getting the notoriety that you are cause you and you're sharing it, which is amazing. A lot of guys don't want it to be ... Well, they don't want to get to whatever

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (29:17):

That's a preference. You guys ever read the book Simon Sinek Start With Why

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (29:24):

No, I haven't read that book.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (29:26):

Simple book. I'm a huge fan. In my book. I talk about other books. There's a whole chapter on books that I recommend and I recommend executive summaries. You're busy, you're busy, I'm busy. I read fast, I read 600 words a minute with retention and you know, did a little test on that. Cause somebody was like, how fast do you read? I was like, yeah, it's like college professor level. So even as fast as I read when I was super, super busy, I don't have time to read books. So I love executive summaries is they'll take a whole book and they'll get it down into about a 15 minute read, which for me is about a five minute read. So Simon Sinek's book about Why, like he talks about it saying everybody has to have their why as a person. Why do you get up in the morning?

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (30:07):

Why do you do what you do? He talks about, you know, and I identified with this before I read it is there is no competition. You're, you're, you're you in the mirrors, your competition. If you compete with other people on a daily basis, like that's not a good, WHY like you're eventually going to falter or you're not going to have like the drive that you need. He's like, if your company doesn't have a why, and he's like, that can be a problem, you know? And he's like, whatever your, why is, is something that good companies stick with when they get big, you have to stay true to your why. And, you know, I, and I see a lot of people talk about employees, this and employees that, but like, you know, we are extremely close to our employees. Like we do our best to treat them like our family. And, you know, you can say that, but think about how you're really treating them. And I've talked to other business owners and they're like, oh, I love my employees, we treat them like family. I'm like, yeah, well, and I shut the company down. We go on vacation as a company. And they're like, why don't do that? I'm like,

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (31:16):


Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (31:16):

I'm not saying you gotta do that, but I'm just like, that's how you get people that will like go to war for you,

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (31:23):

Retain good people and treat them with respect and dignity and value. Are you doing any kind of profit share or anything like that? So since we've been down that road, I mean at your first year and what you've earned so far and where your company is, probably not, I don't imagine, but this is the kind of leads to another question. Let me just summarize real quick. So you started out very deliberately and with a little better funding than most of the guys that are going to start out in this industry. You had partners off the bat, you also hired somebody straight up. You also put a lot of time into thinking about where you wanted to do business, how you want to do business and who your target audience was. You built your rig. One question I, that hasn't been answered, but I do want to ask quickly is what is your web marketing platform? Are you using you know, an out of the box that you custom build? Just short because we also have a zoom limit.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (32:25):

Marketing contractors, I think is TheMarketingContractor.us built our website, Nevin Shields. I really like dealing with them and it's, you know, we went with the package was unlimited updates or whatever. So when I have these crazy ideas, like the sh distribution list, he just made it and threw it on my website. With the Google,

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (32:44):

He does the writing for you. So you don't, you just kind of tell your guy, this is what I want, do it. And he does

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (32:51):

It. He does everything. But the blog post, I did a blog post.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (32:54):

You write the blog post, but then he'll post it, optimize it distributed. What about your social? What are your, I know you're on Facebook, but any other social that you're on?

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (33:03):

Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google my business Next Door. I mean, I have a Yelp presence, but I don't care if Yelp is brought me money, but I don't like dealing with them. Right. But I have Yelp, but I update Next Door. When I can, the two free monthly Facebook and Instagram and Twitter, I post two daily. I used to do twice a day and now I just do daily. But when you're starting out, I highly recommend twice a day. It just, it really feeds algorithm. Right. And then same with Google my business.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (33:33):

Right? Yeah. I always recommend people do it at least as a business, small business owner, at least once a week, if you're not, you're just, you're losing out. And to your point, if you can do it more, that's good. But small business owners don't always have that luxury because it's like, you were just a solo guy in the field doing the job, trying to get new clients, trying to, you know, have a regular life as well outside of the work it gets confusing So I don't know if we'll be recording them, but you did say that Facebook was your number one driver of new business.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (34:05):

It's our only paid advertising. And then I post to Facebook, my business page from Instagram. And that's why like Instagram is not that I care about Instagram. I don't think I've ever landed a job on Instagram. There are people that do, but that being said, it's a good platform to post directly to Facebook and Twitter by linked accounts. I don't care about Twitter either, but it's just one more thing on the web. Right. But the reason I tell guys is to post daily is go do a driveway. And if you take the correct photos, you gotta be creative. You can get like three easy before and after it's just one driveway or maybe maybe seven, because you did the driveway, you took three different angles of it. And then you took like the little entryway sidewalk and the sidewalk. And then also most everybody phones nowadays to do a time-lapse video. People love timeless videos. They're like 20 or 30 seconds, extremely satisfying. You can put them together. And these free I do, I-movie, all of my stuff is on I-movie. And then, but my ads, I run $1,050 a month on ads. And ever since I started our ROI on that has been at least 20 to one.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (35:17):

Nice. That's a nice ROI

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (35:21):


Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (35:22):

ROI return on investment. So all right. So Facebook and I, you know, I think we'll have more meetings as we go. Cause I think you've just got great stuff. And I think depending on how our audience, you know, embraces and I think we can unpack some things bigger, but and now I really, the last thing that I primarily want to ask is like, what's your end goal? What's your end game with this? You just want to build an empire. You want to build it and sell it. Totally retire. And just go back to that pool and Cancun

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (35:59):

I was in Cancun September and I'll be back again and two weeks. So our original goal was not to put a second truck on the road until year two. And then really it's, you know, our long-term goal was four trucks in Houston, but it, this year, I think this year two, will tell us whether that's supportable or not. And so you, you know, you have to expand your marketing, you have to expand, you know, your service area to a degree. You know, long-term or go ahead.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (36:35):

Yeah. Let me rephrase that. Cause that maybe it was broad, your end goal. What's your five-year and ten-year and 20 year goals. So five

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (36:42):

And your goal is two trucks or four trucks in Houston, two trucks in San Antonio, two trucks in Austin, five years with a GM running the whole company.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (36:51):

Nice. So you're at about so five years, that's two trucks. Now you might have four. So that's like a 400% growth. And then 10 years, where do you want to be?

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (37:02):

On a yacht tour in Europe,

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (37:05):

Without the company at all? It's you sold it?

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (37:08):

I don't want to sell it because I, like I said, our whole goal is why. Now, when I say I want to be on a yacht in Europe, I'm like, if you know me, well, I'll never be anywhere by myself. Every trip I take is like six to eight people, 10 people, our friend group is big, we're close. And you know, we're like a big family. So if I can't change other people's lives to grow with me, what's the point. That's my personal thing. So it's like, I don't want to sell the company. I want to take the people that are in the company now and, and see how far I can push them. Not everybody's destined to be a manager, not everybody's got everybody has their skillsets. And I, I talked to them employee the other day real quick. And I said, let me talk about growth and, and making more money. Let me put it to you like this. If I paid you $30 an hour to stay in the field, or I offered you $35 an hour to go sit in an office every day, what would you choose? And she was like $30 an hour. Field. She she's like, I know that I'd be miserable. And I was like, I agree. I am far happier out in the field, washing, but I, we, as the company understand that it has the least effective use of my time.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (38:25):

Right. But

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (38:28):

The satisfaction of seeing a happy customer and us see that you crush the house, wash nasty and it's spotless and you're happy and they come out, they're happy. It's like a, win-win. A business is all numbers and metrics. And that I'm not nerdy, I'm a nerd, but I'm not that nerdy. If that satisfy, I was like, eh

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (38:56):

Good. So then in 20 years you still expect the business to be going, whether you're with it or not.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (39:02):

Yeah. I'm definitely one of us we'll have kids. None of the owners are married or have kids, which is crazy. So somebody is going to pass some generational wealth on. Right,

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (39:11):

Right. Which, yeah, that's pretty much how it's done. Right. Their very few people that actually start with nothing and make something big. There's always, if you go into the backstory, usually, you know, Bazos, wasn't just, you know, some haphazard kid who started out with nothing, neither was Gates, Zuckerberg, might've been, but anyway, the point is, so the real important takeaways here are really, you know if you need to get, if you're going to get in, you know, putting the time on research as to how to do the business, but also self-assessment why are you in the business? Why do you want to be in the business? And so that's, that's great stuff, man. I really appreciate you sharing that. And finally I just want to point out that you're going to be a guest speaker or a featured speaker at the PWNA in February, down in Orlando. That's cool. So we're, we're as Dirk Killer, we're contemplating going out, we just, haven't our corporate overlords a little more COVID frightened. But we'll see. And hopefully that, that all kind of finally dies down and we get back to,

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (40:19):

Hopefully I know they canceled the big event and new Orleans in September because it was the hotspot, but I'll be, I'll be at the Panhandle power wash supply event in January speaking, and, and the February event before the wash mart, I'll be speaking and presenting the soft wash demonstration. So that's done in the Florida event in January's in Destin, Florida. The wash part event is in Kemah, which is south of Houston. And that was like February 9th, 10th and 11th. That was my first ever pressure washing event. Last year I spoke at a, as a new entrepreneur. I'll, I'll be speaking it again in more of like a, Hey, I've got a year and some change under my belt. And then same thing. Business startup is what I'm talking about at PWNA. Those events are super cool for me because I get to meet more vendors, guys like you, that I've talked to, I get to meet face to face. I get to meet all these like legends in the community. Like they're also speaking because

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (41:23):

I know

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (41:25):

That lineup is like the biggest I've ever seen. It's the coolest thing ever. I think Jamie's killing it.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (41:29):

Yeah. We're actually Everett Abrams. We're doing a presentation with his guys at Atlantic pressure washers in November.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (41:38):

Everett's freaking awesome. Like I've met Everett several times. That's the goat, like A) super knowledgeable, but just like just the easiest guy to talk to you ever, like, have you ever met Everett?

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (41:54):

No, no. I've had some email with him. But no, I haven't met him yet. But yeah, I was just checking it out. Yeah, Wags Wags. He's got an avenue or at least

Josh Wagner : Retail and Service Manager (42:05):

The fun of events like that. Yeah. You get some good information. You get the idea of what everybody's talking about and stuff like that. You don't, you'll learn as much there as you do the two hour session afterwards where you're kicken' back drinking a beer and actually talking to people.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (42:19):

Biggest thing from any networking event is

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (42:22):

We should do an event sometime where it's nothing but that, just that. Yeah. It's like, it's the drink? A beer con convention. Everybody just come, we're just going to hang out and drink beer and talk. That's it.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (42:35):

If you have it, if you have like a ballroom with an open bar, it would be the biggest event in the history of the industry Coming, hang out, happy hour on us. Right.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (42:51):

That just everybody come drink and go to that point.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (42:58):

Sorry about that good company. Moral right there. We have a Kegerator in our garage..

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (43:06):

We're trying to work out how to do it with a pressure washer pump. We still haven't done that yet, but so like the keg is out of the pump, but anyway, look, so this is going to, we gotta to wrap up cause it's a lot to edit and we down, but man, this was really awesome. I really appreciate your time Wags. Did you want to say anything else?

Josh Wagner : Retail and Service Manager (43:27):

No, I'm good for this one because I didn't think you were about to run out of time, but I bought this being late. It gets a little crazy store.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (43:32):

He told me what you did. And I was like, dude, he does it, but it was nice to talk to you.

Michael Zittel : Dirt Killer Marketing Manager (43:37):

Okay, awesome. So this is good. This is really, really good. Really nice to meet you. And well, I, I don't really know what else to say.

Heath Felps :  Texas Pressure Washing (43:49):

I appreciate you reaching out and it's always, it's always cool because like when you reach out to everybody that reaches out to me, like, are you interested? I'm like, absolutely because I've never gotten to speak to you. I've never got to speak to Josh and you know, I, hopefully I can meet you guys in Orlando and just always, you just never know, like...END

Zoom recording cut off.

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$155K - First year of pressure washing
Dirt Killer Kranzle USA Atlantic Pressure Washers, Michael Zittel DK 9 November, 2021
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