If you’re engaged in sales activities, you have a sales funnel or pipeline set up. You know the steps a prospective buyer goes through, and the percentage that drop out at each stage, so you know that given a certain conversion rate all you need to do is generate enough leads, and the sales will follow, right? So why do you need to use a lead generation service?
Because you want your sales team to be spending as much face-to-face time as possible with prospective clients who are ready to convert into sales, and to free them from having to find and nurture leads, a job best done by specialised professionals. Just as you want an appointment setting specialist to nurture leads through from first exposure to that ready to buy state, you want the leads you generate to be of the highest quality and the best fit for your business. Lead generation services specialise in just that.
Different Types Of Leads
Professional lead generating services focus on creating prequalified leads for your business. A lead will consist of the contact information of a prospective customer, usually with some demographic information or company information that will help filter and sort leads.
Sales leads are lists drawn up based on demographic criteria such as income, age, previous buying behaviour or in the case of companies by industry. Sales leads may be cheap, because the lists are generally sold to multiple buyers, but they are not usually opt in leads and quickly get fed up of cold calls from various sources.
Marketing leads, on the other hand, should be opt in leads generated through permission based methods either online or via outbound telemarketing, with lists built for a specific brand or company. The advantage of course is that these leads are specifically for the client, and the lead generation process acts as the first point of contact with the brand and the first step on the sales ladder. Although the number of leads generated may be smaller, the leads are targeted, and are more receptive to future sales and marketing communications.
Choosing a Lead Generation Company
- Look for a company that offers marketing leads, not sales leads.
- Look for a company that works with you to map leads generated to campaigns, providing referral sources and data to make evaluation of your campaigns simpler. Ideally, this data should integrate with your existing measurement methods, such as analytics and/or CRM programs.
- If generating leads online, it’s always a good idea to use a double opt-in method to comply with SPAM legislation, and that your brand is prominent in the opt-in process.
- Consider a lead generation service that combines outbound calling with email and postal campaigns to create a multi-touch lead. This way, by the time you receive the lead’s details, they have already had multiple points of contact with your brand and is more likely to be receptive to requests for additional information to fill out the customer profile.
- Choose an Australian company with Australian based staff – why damage your business or your brand by outsourcing to overseas call centres that don’t understand your business or your target market.
Of course, you don’t want to stop your own referral campaigns with existing customers, and you will also want to consider ways to maximize conversion rates at each stage of the sales process to get the most out of your lead generation services. Look for a company that combines mailing lists, lead generation services with appointment setting services to really free your sales force up to concentrate on what they do best – selling