Giving Thanks MoJo Style

As the countdown to Thanksgiving draws to a close, what’s on most of our minds is grocery lists, travel plans and getting the house cleaned for company. I know that’s how it is in my house. But as the turkey comes out of the oven, the sweet potato casserole is on the table and everyone is finally relaxed and laughing on Thursday, we’ll be giving thanks for a wonderful season.

Here at Mosquito Joe if we reflect back, we certainly have a lot to be thankful for. We have locations in 22 states which means a bigger Mosquito Joe family, more happy customers enjoying their yards and a growing corporate team.  As the MoJo family grows, we’re so excited to see all the amazing things our new franchisees are going to do in their communities. All of this is going to make for a pretty wonderful holiday this year. That and pumpkin pie, of course.

So while we’re giving thanks, we thank you. Our customers and franchisees are what make this company thrive and more importantly, what make it great. From our family to yours, Happy Thanksgiving. We hope it is full of family, warm memories, and lots of yummy food.

photo credit: StudioJRU

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Meet A Joe: Jake Vinluan

*Occasionally we like to provide a blog post that will help you get to know Joe. From our technicians to our corporate staff to our hardworking franchisees – we think our company is full of people you ought to know!**

This week we’d like to introduce you to the newest member of our corporate team, Jake Vinluan. Jake graduated from St. Leo University with a degree in business management and started his career in the customer service field at Navy Federal Credit Union and the Hyatt. But after three years at Liberty Tax assisting with their franchise development and marketing efforts, he is now MoJo’s Franchisee Support Manager. Our “Wingman Joe” will tell you his favorite things about his job are helping franchisees, working with the corporate team on a daily basis and of course, being G.I. Joe’s Wingman. Welcome to the team, Jake!

What are the biggest strengths professionally that you bring to the Mosquito Joe team?
I have experience in franchising, business, and marketing. I also worked customer service in the early stages of my career which taught me a lot about working with people on a daily basis.

If you had to explain your job to a five year old, how would you describe it? 
I would tell them I was just an ordinary guy living life when a man approached me about a job.  I later found out that the job would be joining a League of Super Heroes trying to make outside safe so kids would start coming outside again. I quickly accepted the job.

If you were shipwrecked, what three items would you want to land on shore with you?
A Bible, because there is so much wisdom and helpful information in there; probably a survival guide for what to do when you’re shipwrecked; and a photo album of all the people I love to give me motivation to get off the island.

What’s your favorite Mosquito Joe tagline and why?
Stop smacking yourself in the face. It is hilarious and I can always visualize that one.

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A Veteran’s Day Thank You

Being based out of Virginia Beach and next door to the world’s largest naval base, an air force base and a short drive to the Washington D.C. area, we are surrounded by those who are serving or have served in the military on a daily basis. A third our corporate staff are military spouses, many of our customers are veterans or active duty, and since we started franchising two years ago, we’re proud that about 20% of our franchisees are veterans.

This year for Veteran’s Day, we have even more exciting news to share. The Franchise Business Review just released their annual Veteran Report, and we were named as a top franchise for veterans. This special report features 100 franchises that were rated highest in franchisee satisfaction by military veterans who own franchises. We are incredibly honored to be featured in this list as it directly represents how our franchisees feel about their business and being part of the Mosquito Joe family.

Veteran Report

When someone joins the military, they dedicate themselves to give back and protect the country they love. We take great pride in helping veterans find new purpose in giving back to their community by using the same skill set the military gave them to run their own business.  While defending against mosquitoes doesn’t quite compare to defending our country, we’re honored to help veterans transition not only to civilian jobs, but to going into business for themselves.  Earlier this year we were named by GI Jobs as a Hot Franchise for Veterans and several of our franchisees received great press about their business throughout the year. For example, read about Josh Lien in Austin, TX or Jeff Deiters in Fredericksburg, VA.  We couldn’t be more proud of all the veterans in the Mosquito Joe system; they’re doing amazing things in their community.

There are times when the words “Thank you” don’t seem big enough to encompass the gratitude we hold for people and their actions. Happy Veteran’s Day to all those who have served and continue to serve.

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The Smelly Truth about Stink Bugs

When we discuss the types of insects that we can manage in your yards, we often speak about mosquitoes (duh), fleas and ticks. But there aren’t many insects that can escape Mosquito Joe in your yard.  One in particular is the stink bug, which thrives around this time of year as they seek warmth to sustain them for the winter.

Sometimes known as shield bugs because of their distinctive shape, they’re much more commonly known as stink bugs because they release a smelly odor when chased, picked up or more commonly, stepped on. Many people compare the smell to smelly feet.  Generally, stink bugs prefer to be outside.  They won’t reproduce indoors and their food is outdoors, so they won’t try to move inside until it starts to get cold – usually right around now in most areas of the country. They tend to sneak in through small cracks and openings in chimneys, door and window frames, air conditioning units, attic vents and holes in a home’s foundation. They’re mainly looking for a warm place to spend the winter. Stink bugs reproduce 4 times a year. Each time a stink bug reproduces, it lays between 20-30 eggs on tree and other plant leaves. With no natural predators in the United States, multiple reproductive cycles, fast development and an ability to travel easily, the population of stink bugs has grown tremendously and they’re spreading fast across the country.

If you have stink bugs in your house, vacuuming them up is the best way to get rid of them without the smell they can bring along. Be sure to use a vacuum with a bag that you can remove, seal up and discard when you’re done. Flushing them down the toilet also works. Whatever you do, don’t smash them.  Not only do they smell bad, but their odor attracts other bugs. That said, while they’re unpleasant, stink bugs don’t bite or sting and they don’t carry any diseases like many other insects. Mainly they are just annoying and they will eat your fruits and veggies and some trees and shrubs.

This map shows the prevalent areas for stink bugs in the United States. If you notice you’re in one of the states with infestations, keep an eye out on plants in your yard and along windows, doors and siding. Try to make sure you aren’t giving them a warm place to hibernate for the winter or a reason to stay around your home.

Some steps can be taken with certain treatments to the outside of your home to help reduce and prevent stink bugs from finding a home on your property. Contact one of our Mosquito Joe pest control professionals for more information.

Map Photo Credit: Plow & Hearth  

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