So the team at Good Shepherd Roofing, like many other contracting companies in the United States, have utilized lead services such as Home Advisor, Thumb Tack, Angies’ List and others to try to expand our reach and let prospective customers know about the great things we are able to do for individuals or businesses that are seeking solutions in the roof repair or roof replacement area. These “middle men” seek to simply advertise online and send those leads to hungry contractors ready to pay big bucks for motivated leads.
The initial starting phase of any business can be difficult and in the roofing industry that is particularly true. Why? Simply put there are a lot of fly-by-night single person roofers that enter the market each day. They secure a license, buy a magnetic sign, print some business cards & Voila” – they are a bona-fide roofer in your community. In fact, there is a name that some more established businesses give to these fly-by-night roofers. “Chuck in a Truck”. Check out our article on identifying a good roofing contractor to make sure you don’t suffer the ill effects of Chuck in a Truck.
Each of these “lead” services, or middle men, have the same basic pitch to a business owner that is looking to service more customers. List your business with us, do a great job, get high reviews and you will grow beyond your wildest dreams. Some of these businesses such as HomeAdvisor take it to a different level and will proactively call a business owner like Good Shepherd Roofing and say “Hello Mr. X – we’ve got a motivated customer in your area that needs a roof, would you like to connect with them?”. When you’re an early business just starting out the temptation can be strong. “Well of course I want to talk to a prospective customer that will buy a roof from me.” What the middle men don’t tell you is that they’ve already had the same conversation with one, three, maybe even five other contractors. So basically, they’ve captured your interest in a new roof from some Internet form & re-sold your information five, ten, twenty times over. So what happens next? You guessed it… your phone starts ringing off the hook. Why? Because each contractor just paid between $50 and $150 dollars approximately to be able to talk with you. Crazy, right? Yes it is…
See the thing is, Home Advisor is a business. They make money by getting as many contractors as possible to sign up. If the contractor does a horrible job on your roof do you think Home Advisor cares? The answer would be no, they don’t. They are in the business of getting eyeballs and clicks on line and then selling each of those “prospective customers” to hungry roofing contractors for top-dollar.
The Good Shepherd Roofing team many moons ago decided that the HomeAdvisor model just wasn’t the best place to try to find our ideal customers. We did achieve many awards during our time with HomeAdvisor but we started to notice a troubling trend. Many of the “prospective customers” that we were diligent in calling did not even believe they had signed up for anything. Naturally these persons were frustrated that they were receiving multiple calls for a service they didn’t even really want.
Our best advise to prospective customers is this. DO YOUR HOMEWORK. Home Advisor doesn’t care whether you get a quality roofing contractor or a mediocre one – what they do care about is the ability to sell your information five times over. We love when prospective customers reach out to us because they’ve done their homework online and identified a few high quality roofing contractors that they want to request quotes from.
Research, talk to friends and family, look at reviews and ask the questions that will help you identify whom you’re comfortable trusting with one of your most important and valuable assets… your home.
As you’re on your research initiative – take a look at these resources to assist you: