Branding an ambitious online marketplace
Summary: Lack of professionalism and standards used to define Romania’s repairmen market. That is, until Ajusto showed up. We helped build the differentiators and the brand for this ambitious start-up, and the demand for its services surpassed all expectations immediately after launch.
Our client wanted to build a repairmen marketplace for Bucharest, Romania’s capital city. Initially, they only envisaged an online platform that looked good and communicated well, since most of the existing competitors (about 60 of them) had been created by repairmen themselves and lacked these basic elements. However, following a qualitative and desk research, we identified the real market opportunity: people needed (and were prepared to pay for) high work and behaviour standards before anything else.
Calling for a repairman in Romania is a tricky business. Many of them do not show up on time, the work they do is often unreliable, and the initial price usually increases as the project progresses. Moreover, independent repairmen do not issue invoices and ask to be paid in cash or, if they work for a firm, they still expect a cash tip. Therefore, Romanians prefer to call on a relative or acquaintance, because they feel they cannot rely on repairmen they do not know. But handy relatives do not always come handy.
So, what do Romanians do then? Well, sometimes they are lucky enough to get a referral from a friend, one that’s also available when needed. The other, more frequent case, is that they collect horror stories.
Therefore, our brand strategy completed our client’s business strategy with the critical differentiators that everyone silently wished for:
The name we created – Ajusto – combines the ideas of adjustment (repair), help (aiuto in Italian) and the right thing to do, by the law and by standards (just). The slogan clarifies the positioning: By the rules, not by ear (Romanian: După standard, nu după ureche). This slogan became a social media hashtag. The logo states the brand scope: repairs and adjustments for the household.
orders were placed on
Ajusto.ro three months
The demand for Ajusto’s services was so high so fast, that the platform, launched in beta, had to halt its promotional efforts for a while, and recruit more handymen. Finding enough of the right professionals was in fact the greatest challenge and Ajusto had to supplement its recruitment team with new members to achieve the critical number of handymen before resuming their marketing efforts.
Launched in September 2016, Ajusto aimed to reach 300 orders by year-end. It did more than double that before Christmas, and things could not look more promising for them in the new year.