David Royce is the founder and CEO of Alterra Pest. Royce studied entrepreneurial finance at Brigham Young University and started his first pest control company in 2005 while his wife attended law school at Pepperdine. Under Royce’s leadership, Alterra serviced its 300,000th customer and reached $75 million in annual revenue in 2015.
A Santa Barbara, Calif. native, Royce can be found watching Disney movies with his two daughters who are 3 years old and 7 months old when he is not on the road visiting different branch locations or in the office. Royce describes him and his wife as ‘total foodies’ and love to travel for vacation.
Summersales.info: Where do you see the door-to-door industry industry in five years?
David Royce: I see the larger companies getting bigger in five years. I see the door-to-door industry becoming more mature with the larger companies having a competitive advantage. Pay plans for sales reps have gotten higher.It’s more than it was even just a few years ago.
It’s getting harder and harder for smaller companies to grow. When we open a new location, it’s typically $800,000 to $1 million. We want to do it the right way and have a really good reputation.
SI: What books do you recommend for door-to-door sales reps?
DR: One of my favorite books is How to win friends and influence people by Dale Carnegie. It isn’t so much about sales as it about how to influence people in a positive way.
I also recommend anything from Zig Ziglar, Tom Hopkins, Brian Tracy. I’ve read dozens of their books. The greatest thing about this job is you can always get better at it. You can put in more training and learn how to improve.
SI: Why did you choose to stay in the pest control industry? Will you expand to other services?
DR: After my first year selling pest control, I looked at other industries. It seemed like guys in pest control were more consistent. I wanted to be a manager and wanted my friends to finish the summer with me. For pest control, it’s an immediate thing with customers in realizing there’s a need. There are almost always bugs in a home. It’s something people can identify with.
As for expansion, we’ve looked at mosquito services, lawn care services and termite control. We really like mosquito and lawn care, primarily because it’s something sales reps can sell without having to be licensed.