There's been quite a bit of dialogue about services like that and it's generally a toss up. Some have done ok with them, and others felt they weren't worth it. Try the search function with a couple different combinations and you'll find the threads.
Hey Pro, check out the threads at www.contractortalk.com . It seems like for every one person that likes them 30 or more had some bad luck. I have used almost every on-line lead service without any long term luck.
I've had luck with SM. Leads are very reasonable and they are good about giving credit if something is wrong with the lead.
On a lot of the boards guys complain about SM giving them bum leads or duplicate leads and so on. But they've never done it to me, I only requested credit twice when the lead I called apparently was only curious and not serious and I didn't even end up doing an estimate. SM gave me credit no problem, even if they didn't give me credit its still only $12 a lead compared to a postcard lead which is close to $100 acquisition cost.
This is what most guys don't get, they'll pay the yellow pages $500 a month for an ad that brings them 2-3 jobs a month and then complain about SM costing $12-$15 per lead.
I know what you mean Brian. The other day I called a guy back that I had been matched to and he was just down right rude about me contacting him. But that doesn't happen often and SM will give me credit for it.
Bottom line is SM has given me some jobs I wouldn't have gotten and as far as ROI, I'm still way ahead of the game.
I think one of the biggest problems with leads services is expectations. A lot of people think that they are going to be bidding against 3 other contractors since that is how many contractors Service Magic or whoever is suppose to sell their leads to. But I found that a lot of homeowners submit a request on ServiceMagic.com and still call a few names in the phone book as well. I know I got a lot of leads from Service Magic that I had already gotten from my own Website contact form.
In the end it just comes down to cost per leads and it either works for you or it doesn't. The key is just tracking it and figuring that out so you dont' waste money.
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