by Sarah Haynes | Aug 1, 2022 | ADVISORY BOARD
Reviews are a key marketing tool, especially for local businesses. Potential customers want to know that the business they’re thinking of contacting and hiring is legitimate and will fulfill the promises they make. For pest control businesses, this is especially important as homeowners and business owners want to know that they’re leaving their property in good hands.
Of course, getting reviews isn’t easy! Unless you happen to serve someone who leaves reviews for every company they work with, most people won’t think to leave a review, and some may be embarrassed to do so. So, how do you get more real reviews for your business?
7 Ways to Get Real, Honest Reviews for Your Business
- Do you ever ask your customers to leave a review? If you’re just waiting with your fingers crossed hoping someone will leave a review, you may be waiting a long time. Worse, people often only leave a review off their own back when they’ve had a derisive experience, which may leave you open to getting a bad review as your first. When you conclude your service, leave a business card or send an email asking them to reach out if they have any further needs or to leave a review for you if they’re satisfied.
- Offer discounts. Morally, you can’t buy reviews, but there’s certainly nothing wrong with incentivizing them. Offer your clients 10% off their next treatment, check-up, or another service or thing they need if they leave you a review. You can’t dictate how positive their review is, but it’s highly unlikely anyone will leave you a mediocre review and then ask for your services again, so you’re likely to only get good reviews.
- Offer a service for free or for a greatly reduced price. If you don’t yet have any reviews and haven’t got a long list of past clients to turn to, offer your service for free or at a greatly reduced rate in return for an honest review.
- Make it easy. When you reach out to your clients, whether it be in person or in an email, make sure you list a few places they can go to leave a review. Google is the best since it will show up in search results, but other good choices are Facebook and Yelp.
- Thank reviewers. When someone leaves a review, most platforms will allow you to reply. You can reply and say thank you, and that you hope to work with them again soon. This not only makes them feel appreciated but shows potential customers you are active and engaged with your clients.
- Don’t panic over less-than-glowing reviews. If you’re an established business, you’re going to have had a few negative experiences with customers, don’t panic if you get a few negative reviews. Most people actually find these helpful and find they show you are a real business. The key here is not to reply with an equally negative response – stay composed if you want to reply or leave it.
- Offer a prize. If you’ve had a lot of customers but not many reviews, offer a prize. Ask your customers to leave a review in a certain time period and anyone who does so will be entered into the prize draw.
Getting reviews can seem like a daunting task, but just a few changes to your workflow will ensure you keep a constant stream of new reviews coming in, helping to sell your services for you.
by Ron Ketner | Sep 29, 2013 | ADVISORY BOARD
Associate Director, Vector Biology, SRI International
Dr. Vaidyanathan is a medical entomologist who has worked on ticks, mosquitoes, sand flies, and bed bugs. He is part of the team from SRI that partnered with a Shenandoah Valley business to develop a rapid & specific bed bug detection kit. He organized the first bed bug symposium at the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene and is coauthor of a review article on bed bug detection (Vaidyanathan R, Feldlaufer MF. 2013. Bed bug detection: current technologies and future directions. American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. 88: 619-625).
Dr. Vaidyanathan and his brother worked with the Harrisonburg Redevelopment and Housing Authority to publish the first analysis of the financial impact of bed bugs on lower-income housing (Wong M, Vaidyanathan N, and Vaidyanathan R. May/June 2013. Strategies for housing authorities and other lower-income housing providers to control bed bugs – Journal of Housing and Community Development 20-28).
He has worked closely with students, staff, and faculty at James Madison University (JMU) to identify the bacterial microflora isolated from bed bugs and characterize the genetic basis for pesticide resistance in this resurgent pest.
Dr. Vaidyanathan is pursuing projects to evaluate the efficacy of heat treatment and neonicotonoid insecticides as control strategies for bed bugs.
by Ron Ketner | Aug 1, 2012 | ADVISORY BOARD
Chief Entomologist, Louis N. Sorkin, BCE, shown with one of his jars of bed bugs, is greatly respected in the bed bug industry and is often contacted by printed and digital media, newspapers, magazines, publishers plus radio, television, and online digital content when news items involve insects. We are privileged to have Louis on our IBBRA advisory board.
Online interviews can be found by general internet searching. He is an advisor to some of the specialized online entomology blogs.
Lou is a Consulting Entomologist whose expertise provides you with a wide range of entomology and pest control consulting services. His clients include federal and state agencies, pest management companies, import/export surveyors, attorneys, and health care facilities. Licensed in New York State in Structural, Food Processing, Termite, Fumigation, and Public Health Pest Management and is a consultant in Forensic Entomology and Pest Management to the global community.
Lou undertakes forensic cases for import/export companies, manufacturers, buildings management, metropolitan police departments, healthcare facilities, attorneys, homeowners and the like in all aspects of the investigation and finally as an expert witness in entomology. Litigation consulting is provided as required.
It’s extremely important to have a correct determination of the pest species. Incorrect identification leads you to make incorrect recommendations. Lou has 30 years’ experience in insect and arachnid taxonomy plus natural history knowledge of many pest arthropod species.
by Ron Ketner | Aug 1, 2012 | ADVISORY BOARD
PhD in Evolutionary and Ecological Entomology Lab,
University of Sheffield
The IBBRA is blessed with Richard’s wisdom, professionalism and his amazing bed bug pictures. Richard has been working on the common bedbug (Cimex lectularius) as a model system for 10 years.
“I have used this system for studying aspects of sexual conflict and immunology. However, with the rise in prominence of bedbugs as a global pest species the focus of my current research is on understanding the ecology and dispersal of this species with a view to informing control strategies”.
The active dispersal of bedbugs between neighboring flats is an important factor in the spread of bedbugs through multiple occupancy dwellings. However, very little is known about when and why bedbugs disperse. For obvious reasons opportunities for field studies on bedbugs are limited. I have therefore developed setups for studying semi realistic bedbug infestations in the laboratory, which allow me to manipulate many factors likely to be important to understanding the ecology and dispersal of the species. This setup also allows me to address issues fundamental to dispersal ecology.
Bed Bug Mania is all over the internet and people that are untrained are trying to capitalize on the industry. Richard Naylor and a couple of others took a tremendous amount of time to do a little research and find some of these people. For those who actually know about bed bugs you will get a kick out of this!
by Ron Ketner | Aug 1, 2012 | ADVISORY BOARD
Forrest St. Aubin, a Board Certified Entomologist and nationally recognized pest management consultant, received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Missouri and Webster University.
He currently serves as an advisory board member of the IBBRA, a consultant to the urban pest management industry and legal profession, as well as Chair of the Associate Certified Entomologist program of the Entomological Society of America.
Prior to engaging in pest management consulting, St. Aubin was employed for 26 years in various research and marketing positions in the pesticide chemical industry. He was the first Technical Editor of “Chemical Times and Trends”, a journal devoted to the chemical specialty industry. He is an author of many articles concerning food plant and health care pest management, structural pest control and medical entomology. In those regards he has appeared on the programs of many state and national organizations. He is retired from the United States Army Reserve, Medical Service Corps, wherein he served as a medical entomologist, achieving the rank of Colonel. Prior to retirement, he commanded a disease vector management unit stationed in Chicago, Illinois.
Mr. St. Aubin’s industry affiliations, over more than 45 years, have been many and varied. He is a past member of the Board of Directors of the Chemical Specialties Manufacturers Association. He is a past member of the Board of Directors of the National Pest Control Association, as well as Chairman of the Food Protection and Sanitation Committee and member of the Project Development Council of that Association. He was a President of the Kansas Pest Control Association and was a Vice President of the Missouri Pest Management Association. In those positions, he was active in promoting the revision and strengthening of the pesticide laws of the two states.
St. Aubin established and operated Summa Pest Management Services, Inc., of Overland Park, Kansas for many years, selling the company in 1993. From early 1993 until late 1997, he was Director of the Division of Plant Health of the Kansas Department of Agriculture, serving two Governors and three Secretaries of Agriculture. Among other regulatory issues, the Plant Health Division managed the licensing and certification of all pesticide applicators, urban and agricultural.