Service Magic and Angie's List

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by IHA Services, Apr 6, 2012.

  1. ptjackson

    ptjackson LawnSite Member
    Messages: 211

    Thanks for the question it's a great one. Right now the leads are free, but obviously that's not sustainable, we are just trying to understand the market and make sure to make a worthwhile product.

    We will advertise in those areas that have the highest concentration of providers signed up (so that customers have a good experience), but everyone is allowed to list their services for free, forever. As areas get enough providers we spend ad dollars in those markets. But it's good to be the first in your area, you'll get immediate email when someone posts a request for your service area.

    To answer your question directly, we will only charge the "winning" provider for the job. We AREN'T going to sell the lead to 3-4 different companies. One charge to the provider who wins. What that costs is still an unknown, I think it's important to be transparent here. It just depends on what it costs us in marketing to get that lead, then we'll charge a small profit. I'm of the school of make a product people like and they'll be willing to pay. I'm not interested in trying to make as much money as I can as quickly as I can.

    That's why I participate here. It's a great community which I can learn about building a lasting business that is valuable to LCO's.

    Thanks for the questions, sorry for the long reply.

  2. OakNut

    OakNut LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,104

    It's interesting to read about people who "signed up" for Angie's List. Especially considering that you CAN'T "sign up". The only way to get on Angie's List is if someone who is an Angie's List (paying member) reviews you.

    I've gotten two "A" ratings/reviews from clients recently. I took it as a compliment to my service and was thankful for the positive reviews.

    That said, I was later contacted by Angie's List by phone. He wanted to "go over everything to show me how to get the most out of my listings". I was too busy to talk at the moment though.
    I can't say for sure, but I get the feeling they will "push" advertising with them.
    As I understand it, one can only advertise on Angie's List if you have a "A" rating. (There may be another stipulation as well)

    I'll see how it all goes and report any thoughts on it.
  3. Champion-Lawn

    Champion-Lawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 74

    We found success with service magic for leads specifically targeted toward paver installs. There were a lot of crummy leads that came through but we were happy to pay for the 10 or so bad ones that it took to get one sale. Also found that not many people were looking to do installs right away, which made a follow up system critical.
  4. mdvaden

    mdvaden LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,946

    Angie's List keeps calling or mailing letters all the time. I don't want to send them a dime until they get all their ducks in a row though, on the review side. The advertisements on TV are laughable, when they say "Reviews You Can Trust". Which one? The A or the F that people gave me? Which review was right, and which can you trust? Check out this thread I started about it some time ago.

    LINK >

    It's really such fast food referral service. My question is ... was Angie's List ever a really good referral service in the past, before they became so money-grubbing?

    I think the truth is, that there are reviews on Angie's List that can be trusted, but they are dispersed among other non-trustworthy reviews. So the challenge becomes how to differentiate one from the other.

  5. PROCUT1

    PROCUT1 LawnSite Platinum Member
    from TN
    Messages: 4,891

    I do blacktop sealing.

    Service magic is good and bad.

    The good.

    I do get a lot of leads and a lot of them turn into work.

    The bad.

    Their "exact match service". What that did was bump their website to the top of google when you searched for my company. You click on their site thinking its our company. Then you call an 800 number and that connects you with us.

    Those leads were $27.

    What that meant is I was paying $27 for people who were already looking specifically for my company. I had a big problem with that since 50% of my "leads" were people I had already met and dealt with who just thought their number was mine.

    I turned off the "exact match" service which is supposed to remove our web listing.

    The only leads I will get now are people who go to service magic looking for a contractor and those are half the price.

    That, I think is worth it. I dont mind paying for customers that they send me from their own efforts.

    But I dont want to pay for people who are just looking for my phone number who know me already.

    If you dont already have a good web presence though, their exact match service would be great. Its expensive per lead but if you can close a lot of them its worth it since you will be on the top of the search when people are looking for your service in your area.
  6. ptjackson

    ptjackson LawnSite Member
    Messages: 211

    I'm going to be completely candid here. I'm not sure what we'll end up charging for leads but unlike other companies only the WINNING bidder will get charged. It's completely free right now and it will ALWAYS be free to list your services, like a virtual yellow pages to really showcase what you can do. So it's a free link to your site and a free listing of your services. When someone posts a job in your area you'll get an email within seconds. (the system does all the calculation)
  7. SSmith

    SSmith Banned
    Messages: 447

    Service magic was awesome....6 years ago. I recently turned off my service with them. As eash year passed the leads got worse and worse. Maybe in conjunction with the economy? Who knows really. Doesn't even matter. They stink now and I'm not paying for stink. I can generate my own stink for free.

    *Note to the Service Vines guy...the way you interject into the middle of a conversation without actually addressing any specific person is creepy. You're like a robot. I will not be clicking on your website because of this.
  8. ptjackson

    ptjackson LawnSite Member
    Messages: 211

    @SSmith not a robot just here trying to answer questions. I guess I had accidentally answered the same question twice when someone asked "what leads cost". Sorry for the confusion, just trying to be responsive to questions and not spammy.
  9. dcgreenspro

    dcgreenspro LawnSite Senior Member
    from PA
    Messages: 688

    I was put on Angie's ist a couple of years ago. We won some sort of reward for being positively reviewed so many times. We then advertised one spring, I think 3 or 4 years ago, and had to stop because of all the work it generated. Good work, only had one so-so client come from there. It has totally made my business. currently, we don't advertise, haven't since that one time and every year look for 1 or 2 more year round clients.
  10. cpllawncare

    cpllawncare LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,659

    Service magic isn't worth it to me I tried it last year and got nothing but junk leads, you have to call back immediately or you will lose the lead, I have a buddy who has a marketing dept for his company and they answer all leads immediately and even he says service magic is junk, but Angie's list has been a totally different story, I'm currently closing 4 out of five leads and they are very good leads people that are ready for a good service provider and willing to pay the going rate. Just be careful cause if you do a bad job you get the bad reviews as you should but I've also had people threaten me that if I didn't give them something other than the agreed upon service they will give me a bad review, I'm in communication with them now now about that, I've heard of the same thing from other companies also so it's not just me.

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