PestWorld - November/December 2016 - 19

A AT THE TIME, THAT MARKETING PLAN PROBABLY KEY TAKEAWAYS ■ Listen. Even those without a large marketing staff and deep pockets for campaigns can set a course based on customer needs. ■ Set measurable goals. Give some serious thought to what the goals of the plan should be. ■ Seek feedback-and get buy-in-from every level of the organization. ■ Maintain realistic expectations. Step back, take a deep breath and determine what realistically can be done. ■ Keep the budget in mind. Nothing will sink a plan faster than having components that can't be covered by available resources. ■ Write in pencil. Have a framework for one, three and five years out, but keep everything in between flexible. ■ Use available data. Make sure you have the ability to measure the right things, and to do so accurately. ■ Know when to ask for outside help. Sometimes an outside consultant or marketing specialist can bring insight and best practices. sounded perfect. Whether fueled by a focus group, a deadline-induced frenzy or a long, painful process with an unending stream of coffee, at some point, somebody thought it was a good idea. How's that working out for you? Marketing plans do go awry. It could be that the plan was fine, but there wasn't the proper follow through. It could be that it was aimed at the wrong goals. It could be that the goals were good, but they weren't measurable. "I hate to use the word 'failed,'" said Mandi Harris, director of marketing, Environmental Pest Service, LLC. "Even in the worst case scenario, you can learn from it-what didn't work, why it didn't work-and move on." Historically, standard practice is that marketing plans would be set for a year or so, and depending on the channel, it could take real time to measure penetration and success. Today's digital world and use of social media, however, offers new opportunities to change course and gauge response quickly. Jeff Fenner, partner, B Communications, now suggests updating marketing plans on a quarterly basis, especially since the pest control industry is seasonal. "You want to be nimble enough to shift resources as well as people and brainpower to address short-term needs," he said. He points to the challenges of Zika in Florida as an example, and the way pest control companies can respond to concerns about mosquitos carrying the virus. "The days of locking things in for a year or two or three, it's really hard to do that now," he said. For most companies-especially those of small- to medium-size-it's also hard to set aside time within the busy day-to-day schedule to formulate a new plan. "It's very challenging," Harris admitted. But it's essential all the same. Because the nature of pest control is so personal-"customers are allowing us to enter their homes, sometimes seeing situations that they may not want anyone to see," she said-conveying the right message is an essential component of building trust and loyalty. So how is it actually done? PESTWORLD > NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2016 | 19

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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