Young entrepreneur creates thriving business

01_10-june

When his parents suggested that he start his own lawn-mowing business to raise money for a new scooter, 10-year-old Ashton Ray decided that he was up for the challenge.

“My mom and Eric said, sarcastically, ‘If you want money, start a lawn business,’” Ashton said, “so I did.”

The young entrepreneur, who lives in the Fryelands area of Monroe with his parents, Eric and Jennifer Wetherall, went to work almost immediately. Through his business, Ashton’s Tidy Lawn, the self-professed “professional lawnmower” has mowed nine lawns and earned more than $150. Mowing lawns since he was 8 years old, Ashton uses a self-propelled mulching lawn mower and offers prices that are negotiable.

With his stepfather Eric helping to facilitate transportation, his marketing strategy has included door-to-door advertising, word-of-mouth and referrals.

Initially, Jennifer crafted some business cards for her son so that people interested in hiring him would have his contact information. While the cards served the intended purpose, Ashton decided that business cards should be within the purview of the business owner. He made new ones, incorporating all his own design elements.

“She made the first batch, and then I made my own,” Ashton said.

He then went door-to-door, handing out his cards and introducing himself. He maintains his client database in a day-planner, along with his work schedule and is in the process of creating a spreadsheet to better track his finances. His current goal is to earn $350 by mowing lawns, and he is steadily working to increase his client base.

He’s already established several satisfied customers.

“When my husband was laid up after back surgery, Ashton did a great job helping us maintain our lawn,” said Monroe resident Shana Frankovich. “We are thankful to have such a hard worker in our community!”

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