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topic id 32826: Raising prices but do not state what the prices are!!!!!
topic id 32384: Private Chef/Catering Pricing
topic id 26197: Paying twice for the same lead
topic id 25265: Pricing
topic id 24883: The purpose of promotion and set your budget in advance
topic id 22503: Leads
topic id 22064: Questionable leads
topic id 14288: Declined "Leads" charged
topic id 19454: Marketing Executive From Thumbtack Chooses Promoted Lead, Then Radio Silence
topic id 18206: New Model?
Mari25
Level 5

Getting a response

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Does anyone else feel like once you send a price the client doesn’t always respond back?
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revbrian
Level 8

Re: Getting a response

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@Mari25 - This is called "Ghosting" - the potential client is really as ephemeral as a ghost.

They are usually price shopping and are only ever on Thumbtack to find out what the going rate is.

Never, ever let it even be considered that they might be software bots that would waste the money and time of a Pro...

I even have a couple of so called clients that have gone so far as exchanging a ton of emails with me until the moment when we need to meet and get paperwork done and have a deposit paid...

Crickets? Ghosts?

Oh yes. We got 'em on here.

To be fair, honest, and balanced, just about every business has to deal with them, doesn't matter if your work comes from a lead generation site or in real life, but here they cost you real money, not just five minutes in a store setting.

Over time, you learn to identify most of them, hopefully before the first interaction and don't spend on the fee.

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MR
Level 11

Re: Getting a response

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@Mari25  In many of our cases the client virtually never responds back.

With the vast number of people experiencing this, it would seem that this is more of a system problem and less of a quality of lead problem.

 

 

Mari25
Level 5

Re: Getting a response

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Is their a way to fix this?
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revbrian
Level 8

Re: Getting a response

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@Mari25 - This is called "Ghosting" - the potential client is really as ephemeral as a ghost.

They are usually price shopping and are only ever on Thumbtack to find out what the going rate is.

Never, ever let it even be considered that they might be software bots that would waste the money and time of a Pro...

I even have a couple of so called clients that have gone so far as exchanging a ton of emails with me until the moment when we need to meet and get paperwork done and have a deposit paid...

Crickets? Ghosts?

Oh yes. We got 'em on here.

To be fair, honest, and balanced, just about every business has to deal with them, doesn't matter if your work comes from a lead generation site or in real life, but here they cost you real money, not just five minutes in a store setting.

Over time, you learn to identify most of them, hopefully before the first interaction and don't spend on the fee.

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Mari25
Level 5

Re: Getting a response

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This makes so much sense! This is the exact problem I always find myself facing and I’m constantly asking myself why. It’s almost like the price scares them away
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Lar
Level 10

Re: Getting a response

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@revbrian said...

"Over time, you learn to identify most of them, hopefully before the first interaction and don't spend on the fee."

And therein lies the problem with Promote.

Thumbtack don't vet the leads and they constantly mismatch leads who don't match your preferences. You'll end up with ghost leads 5%-10% of the time and your money has already been spent.

Thumbtack overvalue the leads they send. If Thumbtack persist with Promote and they aren't going to properly vet leads and they insist on sending us leads that don't match our preferences then they should drastically cut what they are charging us for leads.

Regards,
Laurence.

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MR
Level 11

Re: Getting a response

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@Mari25 @Lar @revbrian 

Wait - we seem to have a solution here - so how exactly do we anticipate the ghost lead in the manner it is sent to us by TT using the promote function? By then you have paid for the lead - ghost or not... so you would have to be able to stop the lead from picking you if you thought they were a ghost - which you cannot do.

Or am I not following??

In my case, near 100% of the leads that come thru promote are ghosts.

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revbrian
Level 8

Re: Getting a response

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@MR wrote:

@Mari25 @Lar @revbrian 

Wait - we seem to have a solution here - so how exactly do we anticipate the ghost lead in the manner it is sent to us by TT using the promote function?


Everyone has to deal with ghosts/tire-kickers/time wasters (call them what you want) in every end-user interaction type business.

The problem with Thumbtack is that we are paying (an unknown amount usually - a % of what the job is "worth"? Who decides that value too?) when on promote for every inquiry however it gets to us - from the profile or a list or whatever. It used to be that in the pre-instant match, pre-promote days that you sent a quote and if it wasn't looked at inside 48 hours, you got a refund. That worked because the tire kickers could see the response and move on. Now we have paid whatever the outcome. "No refunds" is my experience when asking for one, so I don't bother now. It's a cost of doing business through Thumbtack.

Never, ever let it even be considered that their might be software bots at work that would waste the money and time of a Pro...

How to spot a Ghost? 

Leaving jokes about white sheets floating about, they always seem to get to me at least using one of the canned responses and usually not from a profile view. See my remarks above about software bots. Then there are the ones that spend all day exchanging reasonable messages with me only to say she has to speak to her fiancee about setting up a meeting and then.... Ghosted! Know your typical (real) client and how they get to you, not what Thumbtack or some other "expert" tells you is a "winner" or "typical" either -  every business is unique and your clients - the real ones - are unique too. 

mrs
Level 6

Re: Getting a response

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@revbrian wrote:

@MR wrote:

@Mari25 @Lar @revbrian 

Wait - we seem to have a solution here - so how exactly do we anticipate the ghost lead in the manner it is sent to us by TT using the promote function?


Everyone has to deal with ghosts/tire-kickers/time wasters (call them what you want) in every end-user interaction type business.

The problem with Thumbtack is that we are paying (an unknown amount usually - a % of what the job is "worth"? Who decides that value too?) when on promote for every inquiry however it gets to us - from the profile or a list or whatever. It used to be that in the pre-instant match, pre-promote days that you sent a quote and if it wasn't looked at inside 48 hours, you got a refund. That worked because the tire kickers could see the response and move on. Now we have paid whatever the outcome. "No refunds" is my experience when asking for one, so I don't bother now. It's a cost of doing business through Thumbtack.

Never, ever let it even be considered that their might be software bots at work that would waste the money and time of a Pro...

How to spot a Ghost? 

Leaving jokes about white sheets floating about, they always seem to get to me at least using one of the canned responses and usually not from a profile view. See my remarks above about software bots. Then there are the ones that spend all day exchanging reasonable messages with me only to say she has to speak to her fiancee about setting up a meeting and then.... Ghosted! Know your typical (real) client and how they get to you, not what Thumbtack or some other "expert" tells you is a "winner" or "typical" either -  every business is unique and your clients - the real ones - are unique too. 


TT should be paying me for this reply but they are not. 

While I completely understand why someone would consider that TT is self-generation leads especially with the Angie's list class action. But based on my conversion rate they just aren't. I have a conversion rate(contacts into sales) of over 40% still.  Yes, my rate was higher with the pay for views system but 40% is still too high for that to be diluted by bots.  I strongly suspect other pros-day dreamers-outright trolls are contacting you.

 

I see it too the cluster of almost duplicate leads, the really stupid questions.  E.g the price will be $150 ...What's the price? 

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revbrian
Level 8

Re: Getting a response

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There is a lot wrong with Thumbtack but perhaps the bigest is that its the PRO who PAYS everytime, ghost or not. 

No, I am NOT suggesting that the potential client pays to request a quote - but at least Thumbtack could do much better by not sucking from our wallets whenever someone sniffs in our direction.