This is an email I wrote in reply to the response I gave when I declined a lead. I thought I'd share it here. The Support team member was responding to some feedback about pricing and how Thumbtack determines the value of a lead to determine how much to charge us.
Thank you for your reply! And thank you for a little more detail and explanation than we normally get in these responses. Most of them are the cut and paste canned responses that multiple Support staff use for their replies.
Anything you can offer in terms of specific answers when Pros ask questions is definitely more helpful, thank you.
I'm curious, what could possibly make a lead jump from $8-$10 to $20?? That sounds excessive and I know for sure I would absolutely never pay that.
Plus, if I was ever charged $20 for a lead (which honestly, many of the leads we get are actually not that committed; most are just kicking the tires and definitely not worth the money we are spending)..but if I was ever charged $20 for a lead, through Promote for example, I would absolutely stop my Promote. No question. I would no longer Promote to pay that outrageous price. Which is unfortunate for both the Customer and my business.
It is not the case that a number of the leads are "valuable." Certainly, the Customers I get to work with are outstanding! I love working with my Thumbtack clients and am blessed to do so. However, many of these leads go absolutely nowhere! And we are paying hundreds of dollars a month for nothing. They don't turn into meaningful conversation, they don't even turn into ANY conversation. And many of these are even people who are specifically choosing us.
It goes to show that many of the Customers that ask for our availability aren't really asking for that. My suspicion is they are simply clicking that button Thumbtack provides them as a convenience to just see what happens, not because they are specifically, actively searching for someone or trying to start a meaningful conversation.
There are people looking and serious of course, but the majority we are paying for are not. The problem becomes, our budgets are blown quickly and we can no longer get in front of clients who we can really help.
What is the solution here?
I'm actually asking.
What can we do to actually make the pricing better for the leads we are getting? And improve the process of communicating with leads so we don't waste money and time.
There's got to be a better solution.
Can we please discuss this?
There are a number of great Pros who are experiencing this same scenario and growing increasingly more frustrated!
I'd like to think Thumbtack wants to partner with its paying Pros.
WE are actually your customers. We are the ones paying for your service. The Customers you are trying to serve are actually our Customers and we are providing their desired service.
That's certainly another way to look at it, don't you think? And wouldn't that perspective change your approach?
Wouldn't that perspective allow for Thumbtack to determine ways to really help your Pros (your actual customers) who will in turn be serving the people out there looking for us Pros?
Can this email be the beginning of a new conversation?
I'm actually asking for some specific conversation to happen about this.
I know Thumbtack is always telling us they are looking for better way to do business, but for those of us who have been with Thumbtack a few+ years have seen changes appear (without any discussion beforehand about the impact it might have on our businesses) and seen things become even more frustrating.
I think what leaves me and other Pros so frustrated is Thumbtack's statement they are looking at the Customers' needs AND the Pros' needs. If that's the case I'd think there would be less frustration.
Sometimes the messaging comes across as weighted heavily on responding to what the Customer needs, making it a better Customer experience, etc. Great! But at the expense of the ones who are paying and wasting a lot of money; the Pros.
There's got to be a better way!
Thank you and I'd LOVE to continue this exact conversation if anyone at Thumbtack would.
Look forward to your response.
Have a terrific day and thank you in advance for the good things that will happen down the road!
@MLCC Thank you so much for this thoughtful email/post. You have come to the right place - we are here for a continued conversation and an open dialogue.
For a little more detail about how we price leads, check out this post from one of our Product Managers. Once you have read that, let me know what additional questions you have about pricing.
While reading this post and a couple of your other posts, it's obvious that you want to see Thumbtack work for you, and that you are here to be productive and constructive - I appreciate that so much (we all do). I can assure you that we are working on improvements right now, with our pros in mind. Keep watch here in this forum for product improvements as we roll them out. In the meantime, please keep your thoughts coming. We are here to listen.