Added Value: Customer Assessments Help Sales


December 16, 2015

Customer information is crucial to the sale and success at an account. photo: © Moore

Customer information is crucial to the sale and success at an account. PHOTO:

What can we learn from other industries to help improve our sales process in pest management? A lot.

Recently, I was asked to speak at a security industry conference in Atlanta. It gave me the opportunity to sit in on other sessions and learn how the security industry trains its salespeople to present and sell its products. It’s important to ask questions when determining what customers’ needs are and find out some key information that will help your team in the sales process. The security industry uses a great little assessment form called the Family Lifestyle Analysis to arm its salespeople with vital data to help close the sale.

While on sales calls, I’ve always asked as many questions as I could to find out crucial information that would help me make the sale. This process also lets me ask soft closing questions along the way, to find out whether I’m connecting with the prospect. It lets customers know I care about serving them properly, because I’m taking the time to ask them questions about their home — or even simply where the pest problem is located.

A few of the questions asked on a typical family lifestyle analysis, which I believe could be applied to our industry, are:

  1. How long have you lived here?
  2. What’s your usual work schedule?
  3. How often do you travel?
  4. Do you own a smartphone, and if so, would you like us to call or text you if there’s a problem?
  5. What areas in your home are of particular concern?
  6. Have you ever used a security system (we’d say pest control service) before?
  7. What do you know about my company?

This information can help prepare a pest management salesperson to overcome any objections from the customer. Getting the answers will engage prospects; they’ll know you’re a professional and will soon be asking for the order.

Believe it or not, many salespeople never ask for the order. I’m making my own pest assessment to help our sales staff get the beneficial facts from a customer to give us the competitive edge and incorporating it into our sales process.

As you read the seven questions, did you think about what questions you will ask at your next prospective account?

You can reach Ray Johnson, a past president of the National Pest Management Association (NPMA), president of Sevierville, Tenn.-based Johnson Pest Control, and founder of ACES for Business, at


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