PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 15

'' Data can help you understand when one of your customers is about to exit to one of your competitors. Look at behaviors and interactions with your support staff, or when someone is dissatisfied with your services. This could be an early warning indicator that you are about to lose their business." J - DAVID STROM KEY TAKEAWAYS ■ Begin with a foundation of good data. Make sure you can collect the right information of your past sales history, and understand what drives your existing revenue stream. If you can't, take a step back and ensure your accounting program is up-to-date and accurate. ■ Look at monthly revenue trends to see where ebbs and flows are, and adjust your monthly goals. ■ Align sales forecasts heavily with marketing, and allocate marketing funds based on how things are trending. ■ Set clear sales goals. Create a three-year strategic plan that is updated frequently, and also keep managers up-to-date on monthly sales reports and forecasts. JUST IMAGINE HOW MUCH OF A COMPETITIVE advantage your business would have if you could predict the future. You'd know which marketing strategies worked. When to hire staff. When to buy more products. You don't need to add a psychic to the payroll. In fact, you probably already have the key components to provide insight into future sales and related expenses. It's just knowing where to start. Melissa Krische, general manager of Batzner Pest Control in New Berlin, Wisc., admits that her company has a bit of an advantage. "We have been around for 70 years. That does help when it comes to determining how much we want to grow." Batzner sets annual sales growth goals in three lines of business-residential, commercial and bed bugs. Those annual goals are typically based on the prior year with a certain percentage of anticipated growth added. But the sales forecast is not just a piece of paper that lies dormant until the end of the current year; Krische looks at it frequently. "If we see that one week we don't have as many phone calls or web leads, we look at what we have to do to increase our chance of meeting goals," Krische said. "Maybe it is call coaching in our call centers or re-emphasizing training. There is always something you can improve upon." It also means heeding what marketing is working-and adjusting spend as needed. START WITH DATA Any sales forecast must be built upon the foundation of good data, said David Strom, keynoter at the 2016 PesTech conference and a frequent speaker about Big Data and other IT topics. "Part of doing a good sales forecast is being able to collect the right information of your past sales history, and understanding what drives your existing revenue stream," Strom said. "How much income is coming in from recurring subscriptions? What is the effect of the seasons or temperature or other environmental factors that are out of your control? Is your customer base changing from residential to commercial?" PESTWORLD > NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2016 | 15

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of PestWorld - November/December 2016

President’s Message
View From the Summit
No Crystal Ball Needed
The Marketing Plan Revisited
Heard From the Hill: Reasonable Overtime Legislation Introduced to Phase-in Threshold Increase
Marketing Corner: Year in Review: Top Trends in Pest Management Marketing
Ask the Expert
Membership Programs: Networking: Put Yourself in the Right Room
Hiring Drivers
Calendar of Events
Index to Advertisers
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - cover1
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - cover2
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 3
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 4
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 5
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 6
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 7
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - President’s Message
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 9
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - View From the Summit
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 11
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 12
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 13
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - No Crystal Ball Needed
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 15
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 16
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 17
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - The Marketing Plan Revisited
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 19
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 20
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 21
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - Heard From the Hill: Reasonable Overtime Legislation Introduced to Phase-in Threshold Increase
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 23
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - Marketing Corner: Year in Review: Top Trends in Pest Management Marketing
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 25
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - Ask the Expert
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 27
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - Membership Programs: Networking: Put Yourself in the Right Room
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 29
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - Hiring Drivers
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 31
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 32
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - Calendar of Events
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - Index to Advertisers
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - cover3
PestWorld - November/December 2016 - cover4
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