If you run a pest control company, chances are your yearly business goals are centered around sustaining or growing your annual revenue. Having worked with many pest control companies all over the United States for a few years now, I realize that revenue is one of the main points of discussion when running a business in this industry. It’s imperative to not only set goals for your business, but to make sure each and every one of your marketing efforts are centered around those goals.
Take advantage of your customer base!
Generating new business is obviously one of the best ways to generate more revenue for your pest control company–but what about generating additional revenue from existing customers? Inherently, your sales closing rate is going to be substantially higher with a satisfied customer who knows your business and already works with you in comparison to a brand new prospect who does not. Why not spend some of your marketing time and budget focusing on existing customers? Let’s discuss exactly how you can generate more revenue from your existing customer base.
Upsell your customers
This one is the most obvious of all, but up-selling and cross-selling your existing customers with a different service is one of the best ways to generate additional revenue. Let’s say you have a standard customer enrolled in a quarterly pest service. They’re an ideal customer; they provide recurring revenue, they can afford your services, and they’re already sipping your business’s Kool-Aid (hopefully!). Recurring revenue is going to be key here in sustaining and increasing your annual revenue. Depending on the type of service your customer is currently enrolled in, chances are there’s an opportunity to sell them a different service. You just have to give them an incentive to want it!
If you have a customer enrolled in a quarterly pest service, consider offering them a special bundle discount to add in mosquito or termite control. I’m going to be honest here: the operative word in this recommendation is ‘discount’. Don’t be stingy: offer your existing, long-term customers a different (and better) offer than you would a brand new customer. After all, you want them to feel special and like they’re getting an exclusive offer for being a loyal customer.
Tips to upsell your customers
Utilize email marketing. This is a great platform to send a coupon or discount to customers where they can read it and decide on their own time. This is also a really efficient way to reach your entire customer base without expending a great deal of time and effort.
Have your techs sell during in-person interaction with customers. When your techs treat your customers’ house, this could be a great time to sell them another service. In-person interaction is always going to be the strongest way to connect with your customers, so why not integrate this into your process?
Use the power of seasonality and current events to upsell. For example, during the spring months, come up with a strong termite offer, and during the summer months, a mosquito offer. You should also keep an eye on what’s going on in the news as well. The Zika Virus is causing a great deal of concern for a lot of people–don’t be afraid to demonstrate your expertise and find a way to relate current events or news back to your services (so long as you do it in a respectful manner).
Encourage your customers to leave reviews
So, generating new reviews isn’t going to directly put money in the bank, but in the long-run, it will certainly help bring in new business. In this day and age, consumers need social proof and evidence before committing to a product or service. With so many third party review sites available on the Internet, generating new (positive) reviews should be a necessity.
For the pest control industry, I would recommend focusing on Google+, Yelp, and Facebook. I would also recommend you do a search for your business on Google and see what review sites come up — this may vary depending on your market, but whatever comes up on the first page should be your focus.
How to generate reviews
Similarly to upsells, the best ways to generate positive reviews are through email marketing and in-person interaction with your customers. Here are a few ways you can get people excited about reviews:
Run an in-house contest with your techs to see who can get their customers to leave the most reviews. Reward the winner with a small bonus or gift card!
Run a contest with customers to win a free service or credit to their account (or whatever else you can think of!). Customers who leave a review can be submitted to the contest!
Don’t forget–aside from providing social proof, reviews can also positively affect your website’s rankings, so it’s definitely a win-win!
Offer strong referral discounts
Just like an upsell, referrals are also going to be an easy, great way to generate more revenue from existing customers. If your customers are generally satisfied and happy with your services, it shouldn’t be too hard to get them to refer your services to a friend, family member, or neighbor. Offer them some sort of referral discount and they’ll be even more likely to seal the deal. Want to step it up another notch? Offer their friend a discount too. Another win-win for both the referrer and the referee!
Your closing rate should also be significantly higher with referrals, so putting time aside to focus on referrals should pay off for your business!
Implement a customer reward program
A few of my pest control clients have said if only they could improve their customer retention rate, they would no longer need to invest in advertising! Although I would never advise a company to drop their marketing completely, I can certainly see where they’re coming from. As a business owner, if you can decrease your attrition rate and retain customers, the amount of revenue you have to make up for in lost sales is going to be lower.
In order to retain customers, consider implementing customer reward initiatives. Aside from having great customer service (which seems like a given in this day and age), why not go out of your way to actually reward long-time customers? Such a concept, right?
Ways to reward long-term customers
- Start a customer feature. Whether it’s on your website or on social media, start a ‘Customer of the Week’ campaign featuring long-term, loyal customers. Discuss who they are and why they’re integral to your business’s success.
- Invite customers to events. Consider throwing events — whether it’s a Christmas party or Memorial Day BBQ — and inviting customers to participate! People love free food, and it would be a great way to get to know your customers a little better.
- Leave inexpensive goodies at their home. People love getting unexpected gifts or rewards, so go the extra mile and leave a little something when you treat their home! Whether it’s dog treats, pet toys, candy, or homemade treats — they’ll love it.
- Write handwritten birthday notes. Who doesn’t love to be celebrated on their day of birth? Show a little love to customers on their birthday. I promise you they’ll appreciate the thoughtful notion!
- Don’t try to sell to them 24/7. So this isn’t groundbreaking, but people don’t love being sold to all the time. Try to space out your promotional emails to a maximum of only once a month.
- Ask customers for their feedback. People love to feel heard! Be sure to ask customers for their feedback and constructive criticism, and make a concerted effort to improve your business.
Even if you implement just one of these, it would be a great start! What are some ways you generate more revenue from existing customers?