As the last step in the inoculation process, I would encourage you, my customer, to really think about what I just explained, about how some other exterminators operate so carelessly.

I’d ask you to begin to formulate your own thoughts by asking you for feedback either on hardcopy (survey) or simply by responding to my blog posting: “What do you think about such practices? Do you have small children? Are you concerned about the use of harmful chemicals in your home?”

Psychological testing reveals that the more actively a person defends against an attack, the more aggressively he or she will defend a closely held position.

In this case, that you are the better antibug guy. By attacking your ideas and decisions, inoculation encourages you to use critical thought to defend them.

Essentially, it forces you to think more deeply about how you feel about the matter, and that naturally reinforces your thoughts and feelings. It’s like forced debate prep or rehearsing an argument with someone before it happens. (Admit it, you’ve done it . . . we all have!)

When the real attack comes (Irv’s ad campaign in this example), your customers will be prepped and less likely to be persuaded because you inoculated them, played defense, and intercepted the pending attack.

Get it? By arming your customers with ammunition like this, you’re preparing them to defend their decision to continue paying you to keep their homes bug-free.

Just as important, you’re also prepping them to defend your business practices and fend off Irv’s pending attack.


When Irv launches his army of ads and his son’s social media posts, your customers will have the munitions to shoot his claims out of the sky. You found a couple of key weaknesses in Irv’s (and probably many other competitors’) business practices that completely trump his “hire the more experienced guy” strategy.

A few more thoughts on this and we’ll wrap up in my next posting. In the meantime, consider how you might employ this tactic against your meanest competitor.
Thanks for reading. <HANDSHAKE>

Scroll to Top