Measuring lines of business has merit


May 19, 2022

Illustration: malerapaso/iStock / Getty Images Plus/Getty Images

Illustration: malerapaso/iStock / Getty Images Plus/Getty Images

Most of us are in many areas of service when it comes to pest control, because basic pest control service usually does not include termite, rodent or mosquito coverage.

In addition, you may have other offerings, such as lawn, tree and shrub fertilization. Depending on your market, the size of your business, and your skill sets, you may add handyman, fence building, and other services you feel comfortable offering — or have staff who are comfortable providing.
At our company, we measure lines of business (LOB), which is the number of services we offer that our average customer uses. This is important in several ways.

Customers who have multiple lines of service with you are more important to you because when you lose them in one service line, you may lose them in several lines at the same time. When your staff members who answer the phones know this, they will bend over backward even more for customers who spend more with you.


Dennis Jenkins

Dennis Jenkins

On the flipside, you also are more important to your customers when they use you for more than just one service. If you are offering additional services with your pest control that your competition does not, your customer is less likely to cancel your service to move to another company. When the competition is knocking on your customer’s door, and they do not offer the same services you do, they are less likely to take that customer from you.

It is human nature to “only ask” for the easiest and smallest thing. This is true for many companies that only offer a customer pest control. Imagine how less likely that customer is to leave you if the competitor is offering only a simple service for pest control and does not offer termite, rodent or mosquito services.

Many start-up companies keep their service offerings very simple, but are aggressive in pursuing your customers. If you customer can be educated and stay educated in all the services you offer, they will be more likely to shy away from a simpler, or less complete service. Your staff also can remind your customers of all the protections and services you are providing them, and inquire as to whether the competing company has all of the same offers, if they are considering leaving you.


LOB also can prove to you just how valuable your customer base is. If you can lean into this and really begin to focus on adding services, you can further separate yourself from the competition. In our market, we have added many services that do not pertain to pest control: we already have the relationship with the customer, we already know they enjoy working with us and how they are handled by our office staff, and it is just natural to want to do more business with someone you know and trust.

You can introduce other services with catchphrases. For instance, when talking to a customer about their schedule, or confirming an appointment, you could ask your office staff to say, “Has anyone talked to you about ‘Beat the Bite’?” When the customer asks what “Beat the Bite” is, you can introduce them to your mosquito program. If they buy, fantastic. If they do not, you have planted a seed for when the mosquitoes start biting them as they enjoy the outdoors.

We have had many successful campaigns with catchphrases, and have grown lines of business just by telling our customers about all we have to offer. Once they say, “What’s ‘Beat the Bite’?” you start a conversation that has a good chance of leading to an additional sale.

Get deeper with every customer. It may seem counterintuitive, but the more services they use from you, the more your customers like you and the harder it is for them to be taken away. In addition, the customer service will be better from your company because the customer naturally becomes more important to you.

About the Author

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JENKINS, who rotates this column with his brothers Bobby and Raleigh, is president of ABC Home & Commercial Services, Dallas, Texas. He can be reached at

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