There are very few bugs on earth that evoke the kind of disdain that mosquitoes do. They ruin outside fun, wreak havoc on backyard barbeques and can lead to some pretty devastating diseases. And here is the thing with mosquitoes – no matter how many citronella candles you burn or how much bug spray you apply, they keep coming back. While that is bad news for many of us, it’s great news for one of the most rapidly growing franchise brands out there.
Since its founding five years ago, Mosquito Joe has proven to be a successful franchise with a smart business model. In 2016 alone, the brand grew from 113 to 171 open locations, a 51 percent increase from the previous year. System-wide revenue grew by more than two times, which marked another year of significant growth for the upstart brand.
“Mosquito Joe is successful as a brand because of our franchisees,” said Mosquito Joe CEO Kevin Wilson. “Their dedication, people skills, work ethic and commitment to their customers and employees are what continues to propel our brand forward.”
Ask a Mosquito Joe franchisee, such as Eric Strumpf operating in Ft. Collins, Colorado, what he or she likes most about the brand, and the seasonality of the business usually comes up. Unlike many franchise concepts, Mosquito Joe typically operates from March until October, excluding warm weather states, leaving franchisees plenty of time to recharge and work on their business without sacrificing franchise performance.
“Our business is completely customer-centric, but the seasonality of our model affords me the opportunity of being able to work on my business and plan for the following year without sacrificing my customer’s needs,” said Strumpf. “The Mosquito Joe business model is one of the main reasons we have been so successful.”
Unlike many other service-based businesses, Mosquito Joe franchisees don’t have to spend as much time rebuilding their customer base year-after-year. In fact, the customer retention rate system-wide is over 70 percent.
“During the winter, we want our franchisees focused on developing new customers and executing against their business and marketing plans,” said Wilson. “By doing so, they can maximize productivity during the busy season and ultimately contribute to increasing their bottom line.”
One of the most appealing aspects of the Mosquito Joe business is its affordability. With a lower barrier to entry compared to many franchise brands, Mosquito Joe is empowering entrepreneurs to take hold of their business ownership dreams. Initial investment starts around $75,000 to get a business operational, and this includes chemical supplies, comprehensive training and ongoing support, marketing materials, equipment and a vehicle. Costs remain low because of the ability to operate on four wheels independent of a traditional brick and mortar store.
This commitment to keeping investment costs manageable has led to incredible growth by both new and existing franchisees. In 2016 alone, the brand almost 60 new locations open, which included 35 brand new franchisees.
“As a franchise brand, it’s important to have a healthy mix of new and existing growth within your system,” said Wilson. “It shows that existing franchisees are seeing success and recommitting, which subsequently attracts new operators across our system.”
In 2017, Wilson believes the Mosquito Joe brand can grow from 171 to over 230 open locations. Currently operating in about 30 states, the brand plans to continue its aggressive growth over the next few years and hopes to have more than 500 locations open before the end of the decade.
“There is not another mosquito control company out there that can come close to competing with the level of service and care we provide our customers nationwide,” said Wilson. “By remaining focused on providing high-demand repeat services, Mosquito Joe is well-positioned to continue its incredible growth while providing a much needed service to our customer base.”