We've all received that notification "the client has only contacted you!"
Very exciting - until 2 minutes later you go to respond, and see that they have now reached out to 4 other pros as well.
Under the promote system - clients view Thumbtack's recommended pros, and select the pro that they feel would be the best potential fit for their needs.
They then make the choice to start a conversation with THAT pro.
At this point, it's win-win-win. A great value for the customer, as well as for the pro, and TT makes an honest profit for providing a great service!
Here's where the problem is -
As soon as the customer starts a conversation with the pro they have selected from among the competition, and the pro pays TT for that very valuable connection - TT then interrupts that conversation that pros pay for, by recommending the customer contact other pros. Keep in mind - these are pros they have already seen, and declined to contact.
Under the current way of doing business, the customer then becomes inundated with messages from pros they originally didn't choose. This can cause the customer to become overwhelmed by messages, and equally important - the messages from the original pro they contacted may likely get lost in the deluge of notifications!
All of this leads to a much less valuable ($) experience for the pro, and a less enjoyable experience for the customer.
Thumbtack do right by the pro who was initially selected, and give them first right-of-refusal for the job.
At the very least, give the selected pro a courtesy window of time - even that first critical hour - to have the conversation they earned & paid for WITHOUT interruption by Thumbtack, and previously-declined pros.
Thumbtack pros have worked hard to build their reputations and profiles - and that is what brings customers to Thumbtack!
It's a disservice to then not allow these pros to have the conversation they pay (and the customer asks for) for without interruption.
VERY curious what thoughts the TT Pro community may have on this topic.
@ScottArcangel thanks for taking the time to document and share your experience and feedback around this. I can see how it could be found misleading to hear that the customer only contacted you at first despite if they then reach out to others rather quickly. Along with this, I'll make sure to share your feedback around the fact that other pros are suggested as soon as the customer reaches out to that first pro and giving that first pro a courtesy window.
Customers are attracted to quality of pros, and TT's loyalty to pros would keep high-quality pros on TT.
Customers looking for quantity of pros are typically bargain-hunting, and a platform that caters to those types of customers would contribute to a culture of under-cutting and the under-valuing of quality pros.
Just to clarify, in case I wasn't clear -
As far as your response, "I can see how it could be found misleading to hear that the customer only contacted you at first despite if they then reach out to others rather quickly."
I don't feel mislead by the customer.
My issue is that Thumbtack almost instantly encourages the customer to reach out to more pros, beyond the one they initially select to have a conversation with.
I'm asking Thumbtack to change it's policy and NOT do that for a certain period of time.
Thank you for posting this:
I posted a similar rant somewhere in this community a few weeks ago.
Some things are difficult to measure: Thumbtack's current policies are having a devastating effect on morale in the Pro Community, in addition to a decrease of overall trust and respect. Not to mention; barring a Top Pro from this forum, might offend some Top Pro's to the point that they leave Thumbtack all together.
I used to bartend. The hardest thing in bartending is cutting someone off. And banishing a customer from your establishment is not a decision to be taken lightly.
I fired one helper, in part because he was spending too much time looking at his phone. I advertise on my website, "would you like it if your surgeon or dentist was texting while working on you?"
Thumbtack could be educating job-posters: "We have sent your inquirey to so and so, he may be in the middle of a job. If he does not respond to your message within 24 hours, we will forward your job details to Pro's who may be interested in bidding on your job." But instead, that job lead is sent to other Pro's immediately.
Back in March: I did a job off of a JPSY lead. My customer (the job-poster) was very annoyed that he got emails from a number of other Thumbtack Pro's looking for work and offering other services.
Is there any way to turn around the run-away train that Thumbtack has become? Reese T. May 02, 2019
I remember seeing the thread that @ReeseTee posted weeks ago. Many Pros, including myself, gave a time frame suggestion which ranged from 4-24 hours. I think that we are in agreement that a time frame is needed. I can't recall if any of the Moderators passed that suggestion on. If so, perhaps they can shed light as to that status?
If a Job Poster contacted only me, then he/she should have to wait until I have had a chance to respond. But for some reason, job posters are given a list of other Pros. I DJ'd a wedding in mid-April. Bride told me after we met to sign contract, that she thought she was reaching out to only me, and was offered 5 other Pros, and 2 contacted her with a quote, I presume through the Jobs Tab feature. So, if I was the only one that she wanted to talk with, why was she given those 7 other choices? Suggestion to Thumbtack, if a Job Poster exclusively reaches out to 1 Pro, please allow that Pro ample time to respond to the Job Poster. There has to be a reason why he/she reached to a particular Pro(whether liked the profile, videos, pics, etc). But allowing other Pros a chance to reach out, is doing us a disservice.
I think it's important to note what Naomar stated in that video last year.. He said "the customers want quick responses.. customers have been trained through using sites like Amazon to expect things quick." He even went on to use the phrase "instant gratification". That was what we were told would be solved with the new system. However, (and you can track this...until TT removes this tool) it can be seen by oberserving the time it takes for the multiple pro's who are contacted to respond. Probably, at least in my trade, 10" of the pro's respond in the first 30 minutes.. another 70% respond in a day or two .. the lat 10% of pro's dont respond. I point this out to say that giving the "youre the only one selected" pro a reasonable time to respond will not cause any real delay in our customers happy experiece. The challenge for Thumbtack will be to find a balance between losing the extra revenue from the additional pro's, or losing the opportunity for the customer to truley have a happy experience. Hopefully, Thumbtack will realize that the later is more sustainable.