2023 State of the Industry: Fly high with your fangs out

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November 22, 2022

Getty Images: rusm/iStock / Getty Images Plus (plane), bbevren/iStock

Getty Images: rusm/iStock / Getty Images Plus

Pest Management Professional’s 2023 State of the Industry (SOI) survey respondents are predicting a strong 2023. Perhaps it’s the weather conditions, or the increased business savvy many firms have gained as they navigated through the pandemic. Whatever it is, 86 percent of the pest management professionals (PMPs) who took our SOI survey this year predict revenue gains.

Melisa Arnold, ACE, already is up 175 percent over 2021 — but as she admits, “when you are a new company, growth is exponentially fast.”

Still, being the owner/operator of Horizon Pest Solutions in New Cambria, Kan., lets Arnold respond to new customers quickly, with no corporate overhead. Her past experience in working with food processors also is helping open doors to growth.

RAISING PRICES

Pete Fargo, CEO of Noble Pest Services, Acworth, Ga., has seen a revenue increase, but it comes partially as the result of implementing a 10 percent rate increase for customers. It was not a move he took lightly.

Getty Images: Getty Images Plus

Getty Images: Getty Images Plus

“It was our first increase in a while, and we grandfathered in fixed-income customers,” Fargo notes. He says he was surprised to only receive a few angry calls at the news, and those who did cancel over the increase were quickly replaced by new customers happy to pay the new pricing.

“Some customers, once we talked it through, realized the increase was necessary for us to be able to afford quality employees and the level of service they receive,” he adds.

For George Bryce, president of Crown Pest Control in Matthews, N.C., growth came by shedding a few employees who had the wrong attitude. “They were stifling the company,” he points out. “Now we have new people with a great work ethic who know their stuff. Instead of tired excuses, projects are getting done, and we’re up 33 percent in revenue.”

Getty Images: Maxiphoto/iStock / Getty Images Plus

Getty Images: Maxiphoto/iStock / Getty Images Plus

The experience has led Bryce to vow to move more swiftly in letting go the people who are holding back the company. But Bryce also points to another growth contributor: Getting the word out about service packages.

“We thought our general pest customers already knew about our termite and mosquito services,” he says. “We decided to present these services as a package, and mailed flyers to our customers. Soon, the phones started ringing. Everyone kept saying ‘I didn’t know you offered this.’ We were really surprised. It just underscores how you can simply ‘never assume’ in this business.”

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About the Author

Heather Gooch

Heather Gooch is the editor-in-chief for PMP magazine. She can be reached at hgooch@northcoastmedia.net or 330-321-9754.

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