For over a month there has been this big bright yellow and royal blue van parked across the street at our neighbor’s house. It says “HomeTask.com” Handyman services. I brought up their website. All the brand elements are consistent with the van. It’s easy to navigate. I called their 800 number. A very nice woman answered almost immediately.
I explained how I “heard” about them (meaning their marketing actually worked) and that I needed more information. It’s pretty straight-forward. They are a dispatcher of sorts for handymen all over the nation. These men (and now that I think about it — it was gender specific) buy into the franchise of HomeTask.com. Very smart way to get business.
I explained our task. My husband fell off a ladder last summer painting the exterior of our house. He had to have knee surgery. And now that he’s all healed up — I’d rather he not get back on the ladder. She was great — we had a little chick moment about men and their egos and she said she would have Scott come out the following Tuesday.
She even confirmed the gig with an email. I now had an online account complete with Scott’s contact info, and description of the job. That Tuesday morning Scott called — he couldn’t make it. Could he reschedule for the following Tuesday? Sure.
The following Tuesday I waited and waited. No Scott. I called HomeTask and explained. This gal was super nice too and very apologetic. She said she would located a different handyman and have him contact us. He did. We played phone tag. He’s currently “it.” It’s been over a week. Guess who got on the ladder yesterday and finished the job?
Here’s my point. Why in the world would you PAY money to this tight franchise to promote your services and then blow off clients? I can understand ONE handyman doing it — but two?? The van is still parked in front of the house across the street. I’m dying to walk over there and say, “Scott?” If he responds — I just want to simply say, “What the hell?”
Here’s where marketing gets a bad rap. Whomever developed the brand for this company did everything right. Except being involved in the actual execution of the promise. This is classic frosting on the pig. All the elements are there. Consistent use of fonts, pms colors, graphics. The voice is clear and strong and the site is easy to navigate. BUT I couldn’t get a single handyman to actually come out to do the work.
You can’t beg for business anymore — now you have to earn it. One unhappy customer used to tell 8 people of their experience — today we can tell 8000…..or more.
NOTE: Please read A Complaint is a Gift blog entry for an incredible update to this story.

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