The Importance of Giving Back for Businesses

Over the last decade or so, businesses large and small have taken to the trend of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). In a nutshell, CSR describes a company’s philanthropic actions – what it’s doing to put more good into the world. Consumers probably recognize Corporate-level examples such as Toms Shoes’ “One-for-One” campaign or Starbucks’ “One Tree for Every Bag” campaign.

While these examples are large-scale, medium and small businesses contribute to the general good just as much. Mosquito Joe, for example, just wrapped up its 4th Annual Beat the Bloodsuckers Campaign, which takes place during the last week of June to honor Mosquito Control Awareness Week. The campaign works to raise awareness of mosquito control and mosquito borne illness through community involvement and education as well as partnering with local blood banks in our franchisees’ communities to support the amazing work these organizations do year round.  This year, Mosquito Joe franchisees partnered with 27 blood banks in 22 states and donated over $10,300 in just one week!  In addition, participants donated 30 pints of blood, which is enough to save over 90 lives.

We love being able to give back, but from an outside point of view, why is Corporate Social Responsibility so important, regardless of size and scale?

Customer Relations and Sales Benefits

While it’s important to give back to the community and world at large, companies that have a philanthropy component tend to attract more customers. Added bonus! A Nielsen study from June 2014 found that 55% of global online customers are willing to pay more for services from a company committed to positive social and environmental impact. Companies involved with CSR appear to customers to have more in mind than the bottom line, which is important and refreshing to many people. And if consumers feel they can help give back, it seems more likely than ever that they will go out of their way to do business with a certain company.

Public Relations

Becoming involved with a cause or creating an original campaign gives a company something to focus on, a vehicle for spreading its message. Mosquito Joe’s Beat the Bloodsuckers campaign, for example, generated local news opportunities for the participating franchisees. In addition to giving back locally, franchisees could use this opportunity to speak directly to their communities, spreading awareness about mosquito control, mosquito-borne illnesses, and the importance of donating blood. By having this annual campaign, Mosquito Joe is able to reach more people than it normally would in a typical week and catch the attention of potential customers, news outlets, and those looking to help.

Employee Engagement

Millennials are a generation concerned with making a positive social impact. And as they make their way into the workforce, they want their employers to be concerned with it as well. According to a survey of 6,000 Americans from 2015, 82% of Millennials are likely to seek employment at a company recognized for its ethics. The study also found that company ethics and CSR ranked second behind income when it came to evaluating an employer.

Getting employees and leadership involved together in philanthropy can boost employee camaraderie, general work drive, and deepen employees’ roots within the community. Aside from donating money to a cause, companies can organize a partnership with a local non-profit to volunteer a certain number of hours per month, match employee gifts to charities, and provide pro-bono work if possible.

Putting Good into the World

The world can always use more positivity, and philanthropy is an easy way for companies to do something good as a group. To make the most impact, companies should choose a cause or non-profit that aligns with their values and business objectives. Partnering with local blood banks makes sense for Mosquito Joe because we fight mosquitoes (bloodsuckers) every day! It helps consumers find value in your efforts when they align with your business.


We are very proud of this year’s Beat the Bloodsuckers results, and cannot wait to continue growing this campaign next year! Check out our recent blog post for more details. If you or someone you know is in need of mosquito control services, please call your local Mosquito Joe today. And if you’re interested in joining the Mosquito Joe family, please visit our franchise information page for more info.

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Women of Mosquito Joe: Marla Carruth

If there is one thing we have learned it is that there are many misconceptions about women in the pest control industry! So while we could write a blog post about the pest control industry and why women are a good fit for Mosquito Joe, we thought there were a few people who could do a better job. In our blog series the Women of Mosquito Joe, we highlight the incredible women that are a part of the MoJo family and why it is no longer a man’s world!

This month we chatted with Marla Carruth of Mosquito Joe of Baton Rouge. Marla is a music teacher who was ready for a change, so she and her fiancée Howard took the leap and opened their local Mosquito Joe. She oversees the day to day operations of the business and even sprays with her technicians!  The services provided by Marla and Howard make sure their customers are not only itch free, but also help protect them from these mosquito transmitted diseases like Zika virus which is making big headlines in Louisiana this year.

What is your role in the Mosquito Joe business?

A little bit of everything: co-owner, office manager, technician—I am woman! Hear me roar!

There are often misconceptions around the pest control industry and in particular with women working in that industry (that it’s dirty, etc.); what are your thoughts on those?  Do you find them to be true or untrue?

Being in the pest-control industry is about learning as you would anything else. As a teacher, I was trained to begin with the end in mind. It’s the same in the pest-control industry, or any other industry for that matter. Learn all you can and work toward pleasing your customers. We as women do not have to fit into one type of box.

How do you balance this with your family or home life?

My children are older so they too, are involved which makes it a fun, family business! My son is a technician and my daughter helps me in the office. Howard fills in wherever is necessary.

What advice would you give a woman considering opening a Mosquito Joe business?

Mosquito Joe is empowering me as a woman to do something I never would have believed I would/could do, so I say be fearless! Have patience and be persistent.

Who is your inspiration and why?

My great aunt, whom we called “Big Sister.” She was born in 1895 and became a college professor. She had courage and determination to be educated and successful at a time women were not expected to work outside the home.

We’re so proud Marla and Howard are a part of the Mosquito Joe family. If you would like more information about Mosquito Joe of Baton Rouge and their mosquito treatment services in Louisiana, be sure to check out their website and read more about what they offer. And if you’re interested in the Mosquito Joe franchise opportunity, we’d love to hear from you. You could be the next Woman of Mosquito Joe!

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Why Referrals Matter and How to Get More for Your Business

Those going through the process of researching and buying a Mosquito Joe franchise are required to visit franchise headquarters in Virginia Beach for a Decision Day. This is a full day of meeting the Corporate staff, learning about the intricacies of a mosquito control business, and asking questions necessary to help make a final decision (hence the name “Decision Day”). At some point in the day, more often than not, potential franchisees ask, “Where do most customers come from and how can I make use of that source?”

We are proud to say that word-of-mouth and referrals are Mosquito Joe’s second largest source of customers system-wide. Although Mosquito Joe is a national company, our individual franchisees are small business owners with roots in their local communities, working to provide a great customer experience that results in referral after referral. Regardless of the industry, person-to-person marketing is (or should be) highly valued. Other customers’ experiences carry a credibility that can weigh heavily on others’ decisions to purchase or use a service. Even if you think you have referrals down pat, there is always room for improvement in business! So check out these suggestions for increasing referrals and your overall customer base.

Provide a Simple Call to Action

It’s very easy to ask a customer to refer your services to their friends and family, but odds are, that customer is more likely to do so if you tell them specifically how. Direct them to your Facebook page or hand out review cards to customers after each service asking them to visit your various online profiles (Twitter, Yelp, Google+, etc.) and leave a positive comment. If your business has a loyalty or referral program, make sure to mention it in all customer communication via email, direct mail, online, etc.

Make sure the referral and review process is as simple as possible to further encourage customers to follow through. For example, Mosquito Joe’s referral program (Share the MoJo) is a straight forward, easy to use concept that is the same across all franchises. When customers refer someone, both the customer and the refer-ee get $25 off their next mosquito control treatment. All they have to do is visit sharethemojo.com to enter their information, and their local Mosquito Joe will be in touch to arrange service! This simple incentivized process is one of the many reasons our referrals are so high system-wide.

Monitor Your Source of Customer Reviews

As previously mentioned, word-of-mouth marketing carries a lot of weight in a consumer society that trusts personal recommendations so much. Many businesses use the Net Promoter Score to monitor their level of customer satisfaction. In a nutshell, the Net Promoter System sends a one-question survey to customers asking, “On a scale of 1-10, how likely are you to refer our services to a friend or colleague?” Those responding with a 9 or 10 are considered Promoters who “are loyal enthusiasts who will keep buying and refer others, fueling growth.” Many customers also leave additional comments, which (in the case of Promoters) could be used as testimonials in future marketing. Whether your business uses the Net Promoter Score or another system, be sure to monitor your reviews closely. Reach out to customers who leave bad reviews (these are just as important as the positive ones) and try to resolve the issue by finding common ground. Likewise with customers who leave good reviews. Reaching out to them and acknowledging their comments will put your customer service a step above the rest.

Show Appreciation

These days, a little personal business touch goes a long way with customers. You can really make your business stand out by sending customers occasional thank you gifts and/or rewards to show your appreciation. Consider sending an email to your customers (especially those who have sent referrals) that includes a special offer on services. Offering something small to show your customers you appreciate their business will differentiate you from most other businesses, hopefully pushing customers to recommend you to friends and family.

Satisfied customers and a continuous cycle of referrals are integral to the success of most businesses. At Mosquito Joe, recommending a family or friend to our service is the highest compliment a customer can pay us! And we make it easy for everyone by simply asking them to spread the word or leave a review online. It really is that simple. Likewise, our referral program Share the MoJo incentivizes satisfied customers and offers them and their referral a special discount. So if you or someone you know is in need of mosquito control services, send them to the nearest Mosquito Joe location! And if you’re interested in joining a company with great customer service, visit our franchise opportunity page and call us today!

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Partnerships are Key for Small Businesses

July is National Parks and Recreation Month, and it got us thinking about all of the little league fields, playgrounds, and dog parks our franchisees service to keep mosquito free for their patrons. These partnerships are key for Mosquito Joe for many reasons. Our goal is to make outside fun again.  Through partnerships such as these we’re able to do that for more people, while also showcasing our services to generate more business. When we treat that little league field, we want the families attending practices and games to remember Mosquito Joe when they’re home and need mosquito control service. These kinds of relationships are vital to building business year over year.

We want to highlight why partnerships are so important to all entrepreneurs and small business owners. Starting a business takes a lot of drive and time. It’s good to have a network of friends and associates to keep you going and keep you inspired.  Networking, whether through business associations or other means, is a very cost effective way for small businesses to garner up referrals and new sales.

Knowledge

When you join a networking organization and attend meetings, you can be assured that within this particular group there will be some people who have already been where you are today. It might not be the same industry, but it does provide you with an opportunity to chat about the experience with others who have been in your shoes. You can take note of their accomplishments and even learn from their mistakes.

Confidence

The more you talk about your business, the more comfortable you become. That is especially true with people you don’t know. This can be an important part of your business growth and development as an owner. Sure, it can be a bit nerve wracking but just keep in mind what made you sign that agreement in the first place. Where did your passion come from? Draw on that, and it will be easy for others to see why you love what you do.

Recognition

One of the biggest returns you can get from networking is that people will start to recognize you. The more you attend business and social events,  the more people will becoming familiar with and remember your business. They’ll remember you as a supportive and knowledgeable part of the community. Attend meetings as often as you can, hand out business cards, and get involved. Many associations and groups have boards and committees to which you can lend your strengths.

Business

Of course, the main reason we network is for business or referrals. Referrals mean nothing if you’re not acting on them. Make that phone call or send the email with the information you said you would. If you happen to see this person at another event, be sure you’ve paid attention to their business as well. Was there a recent news article about them? Mention it! Was there an event they sponsored? Be sure to give them a pat on the back. You should also be generous about sharing referrals for them (with non competitors, of course).  They’ll remember that you helped them, and who doesn’t love feeling good about helping someone?

If you are a business owner looking to build partnerships of your own, consider your target audience and where they are. Also, consider influencers or those in your community with the potential to reach and refer your business to others. If you or someone you know are interested in learning more about the Mosquito Joe franchise experience, please visit our website and give us a call.

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