Remodeler: Todd Jackson
Company: Jackson Design and Remodeling, San Diego
Product: My Design Build Project,

Being able to offer clients something your competitors can't is a real coup. That's part of what made Todd Jackson take notice when he first heard about My Design Build Project. MBDP is a Web-based service that allows a remodeler to provide individual Web sites for their clients, giving them access to their project's designs, schedule, material selections, ongoing photos, and even change orders and other agreements. Jackson says he and his company use it “from conception all the way to the finished product.”

MBDP really comes in handy when changes need to be made and agreed on. “Say we're in the design process. We typically go out and meet [the client] one time, then we need to tweak [the designs] a little bit,” Jackson says. “We can download the photos, they can sit there at their desk, and we can all look at the same picture,” without the hassle of scheduling another face-to-face meeting.

Joe Dellanno, who developed the program, only licenses it to one remodeler per exclusive area, which he says is a hot selling point. “My thought was to be able to offer remodeling contractors a tool that would fit their company style and services,” Dellanno says. “If I offered it to everyone, everyone would be the same.”

Dellanno also offers ongoing coaching for those using the program. Jackson says this is extremely helpful, and he also cautions that “when you start to do this, it takes some time. You have to have someone dedicated to putting all that information in.” He says it takes his office administrator about five hours a week to do just that.

Jackson has definitely reaped the benefits of having a one-of-a-kind service to offer. He even promotes it in his radio ads. “It separates you from the other contractors, [because] truly you're giving your clients a unique service.”