You are probably already familiar with the term, lead generation, right? And you probably have an idea or have read quite a number of times that lead generation is considered to be the key to business success in today’s technological era.
Knowing the information above, it is also probably safe to assume that you know what lead generation means and how it can benefit your business. So, this content skips that introductory part and moves on to discussing some terms under this broad topic, giving an idea of how much it costs in the industry and the technology used behind it.
So let us start off this reading journey with the question, should you pay for leads by getting a lead generation company or try getting them on your own?
Should I Pay for Leads?
As a businessman, one of the constant questions that would always be in your mind is how to know if something is worth your investment. Now, there are a number of metrics that can help you figure this out but a specific one you can employ for determining how much something is worth is known as a marketing campaign’s cost per lead.
Before we move further, let us first clarify some terms. You may have already heard of the term, cost per lead, and another one quite similar in sound, which is the cost per click. Let us differentiate the two:
Cost per Lead – the amount of money needed to generate a new prospective customer (lead) for your sales team who is currently working on your marketing campaign. These prospects have already seen your ad, clicked on it, and have given contact details which the lead generation company collects and provides to your salespeople.
Cost per Click – the cost of one person clicking in your ad but may have not given any contact details or may not have taken any further steps to show interest in purchasing your product or availing your service.
From the definitions alone, you would already know that the cost per lead metric is the safer option of the two. Moreover, among the rest of the metrics available, it has been proven to be effective in evaluating your marketing campaigns. Aside from giving a strong value sense of your investment, it likewise makes calculating your ROI easier.
Why? Let us go back to the difference between the cost per lead and cost per click. With the latter, you would be needing an analytics group and ad campaign manager to ascertain which clicks are giving you the most revenue, all of which involve a lot of work and resources spent on people who are not necessarily qualified leads.
With the former, the advantage lies in the simple way of calculating its cost-effectiveness. The cost per lead formula is the cost of generating leads divided by the total leads acquired. For example, if you spend $1,500 on lead generation with 50 acquired leads, then you pay $30 per lead.
Take note that the formula gives you qualified leads, not viewers who were just curious about your ad or clicked on it by accident. This means that the customers given to your sales team are those who are genuinely interested in what you are offering; thereby making the conversion, not just a probability. In return, you as the business owner, are assured that the money you spent on paying for leads is indeed worth the investment.
A Breakdown of Industries and the Cost of their Leads
Now that we understand the formula of how much a certain qualified lead costs, the next question is how much will it cost by industry? The table below gives you a benchmark arranged from the industries with the highest lead cost to the least one:
Cost Per Lead Average
$51 – $100
Information and Technology Services
$51 – $100
$51 – $100
$51 – $100
Industrial and Manufacturing
$26 – $50
Travel and Tourism
$26 – $50
$26 – $50
$26 – $50
From the table, you can see that software, information and technology services, marketing agencies, and financial services are among the industries with the highest lead cost while industrial and manufacturing, travel and tourism, consumer products, and consulting are among the industries with the lowest cost.
What are the other Benefits of Outsourcing your Sales Process?
In this era of technology, businesses have come to recognize the key role of outsourcing in the addition of new capabilities necessary for competing effectively in the constantly changing landscape of marketing trends and customer expectations. Here are some of the benefits of sales outsourcing:
Outsourced sales firms who have been around for more than ten years have experienced salespeople who are experts in understanding the brand, products, and services of your business; thereby, making them ideal representatives. With their entry, the time, work, and expense needed for hiring, training, and managing your in-house sales staff are likewise eliminated.
Faster New Market Entry
Established outsourcing sales companies come with an in-country footprint and can penetrate the market in just a matter of weeks, which may normally take your sales team months to achieve. By partnering with an outsourced sales firm, you have people to help in streamlining expansion, recognizing, and reducing issues of regulatory policies and cultural norms.
Utilization of Big Data Analytics
In this technological era, the basis for every sales decision is data. However, the process of gathering and analyzing these data from different markets can be both time-consuming and costly. The good news is with an outsourced sales firm, you have a team to do all these data collection and analysis for you; thereby, delivering insights that are valuable in your objective of expanding to new markets and regions.
Access to Cutting Edge Sales Technology
You may have available technology available for use in engaging with your target market but chances are likely that these are quite limited due to budget constraints. Among the benefits of sales outsourcing, this definitely saves you from spending a six-figure cost because the outsourced sales team has the latest technology available, such as CRM and automation, that can be used to optimize your sales process.
Why is it Cheaper to Outsource your Lead Generation Team?
Lead generation can be quite an intimidating task; hence, in deciding if you will go for in-house or outsourced lead generation, there are a lot of factors that need to be considered to ensure that you are going to get a good ROI, should you go for the latter.
Of course, it is inevitable that your first concern would be the price of lead generation outsourcing. Considering the ongoing and upfront costs, how much can you afford to invest?
If you go in-house, the cost involved would be overhead expenses and salaries of your personnel. Moreover, there is also the cost for recruitment, training, and management of your in-house team. The more people, the higher the expense.
The price of lead generation may have a high fee but this already covers everything from personnel, equipment, and office space where they do their work. In the grand scheme of things, going this route may be less expensive because it is likely that the company already has its own building and staff.
Time and Resources
When you are recruiting for an in-house lead generation team from scratch, the commitment of your time and resources is necessary for such endeavors to be successful. Aside from the daunting task of setting up resources, processes and support for HR issues must be in place. You will also need regular support for recruitment as well as initial and ongoing training to ensure consistent team performance.
On the other hand, outsourcing for lead generation firms would mean that they will be responsible for the recruitment, training, and management of their team. You will not go through the pressure of hiring personnel on time as well as the stress of having new agents onboard. As a result, you can concentrate more on key areas of your business.
Strategy and Processes
Campaign management must be done right. So whether you have an in-house or outsourced lead generation team, your strategies and processes are the determinants of whether your campaign will succeed or fail.
The tasks of setting up, modifying, and managing a lead generation campaign can be overwhelming to one’s mind and body. An in-house team would take a longer time in evaluating if your campaign is indeed effective.
Whereas an outsourced lead generation firm has the capability of knowing the effectiveness of your campaign in just a matter of weeks. As they have been around for some time in the industry, these companies are likely to have proven processes and systems in place.
In summary and based on the factors given, it is safe to conclude that while the price of lead generation may be more on the expensive side, it will still come out as less expensive overall because the fee they charge already covers everything.
You need not worry yourself over the overwhelming processes involved in hiring, training, and managing an in-house team and ensuring that they stay on top of their game through regular training. Moreover, the outsourced lead generation firm has its own system and processes involved plus access to the latest technology, sparing you from dealing with anything too technical, a realm you may not be so familiar with.
How do you Generate a Sales Lead?
Just as writers get writer’s block, so do salespeople when they hit a brick wall in finding leads. If such is happening or will happen to you, here are some tried and tested ways on how to generate leads:
There are some pretty good advantages in getting referrals. For starters, you are already guaranteed a qualified lead by the person referring to you. Second, you do not have to worry about how you will introduce yourself as you can do this by mentioning the name of the person who referred you, which serves as a good ice breaker.
Lastly, you are able to save on expenses because it does not cost you a single cent. However, since it is freely given by the referrer as a sincere help, make use of this detail wisely so you can achieve your sales goals.
To close a sale, you need to build trust with your client; hence, it is important that you are able to meet personally with them. The good thing is there are other ways to achieve this aside from a mere face-to-face meeting.
How do you do this exactly? Consider attending networking events that will get you near potential customers. What’s good about this scenario is unlike a random phone call, attendees will be able to attach a face to your name because they are able to meet and talk to you personally. This goes a long way in breaking the ice so you can secure a meeting where you give your sales pitch; thereby, paving the way for an eventual sale.
Another sure-fire way of generating leads is going the tried and tested way of advertising. Although this would have you paying a price, it is still among the best ways of acquiring new customers.
Make sure to study your target market and create a customer profile describing each type of customer starting from their age range, job title down to their hobbies. Once you get this down pat, make a list of the content that is sure to draw their attention. This, in itself, would already shed light on what will be your ad campaign.
Great landing page, content, and SEO
It is basic to have a website where you can showcase your offered products or services but just having this is not enough to generate leads. You also need a good landing page, interesting content and effective SEO strategies to make sure that you stay on the first page of search engines; consequently, making it easy for viewers to find and access your website.
So how to generate leads with these three factors? First up, hire a graphic designer who can make a landing page that is quite simple in layout (so as not to be cluttered) but bold, attractive and clear in terms of image, copy and call to action respectively.
For SEO, you can hire an SEO specialist to ensure that effective keywords are being given to keep you on top of the search engine list.
Lastly, get a writer who can write content that is interesting enough for viewers to share across multiple channels and revisit the site again and again because it has come to a point wherein they actually look forward to reading about the contents being posted as they find it informative and entertaining.
There is no doubt that social media is an effective way of being noticed and connecting with potential leads. In your case, it would be ideal to have accounts in Facebook and Linkedin as they enable you to get near your prospect through conversations of users.
Facebook Groups is one good example of a venue where a lot of your prospects meet and converse. Creating or joining a group can give you access to a whole lot of background and information from the right market and this can already be considered a qualified lead in itself.
Live chat enables you to talk to your website visitor in real-time; thereby, creating an immediate and warm connection, most especially if you are able to address his or her concern promptly.
It is just important to play it right to maintain maximum effectiveness. Start by adding your live chat at the greeting part of your landing page. This is a strategic area because this is also where viewers know about your business. Moreover, it is found on just one page and not popping up on every page of your website which can be annoying to your viewers.
Second, it would be wise to collect chat transcripts so you can track which among those who chatted are likely to become your customers. Likewise, comparing chats with those who can become customers versus those who are not can provide you clues on how you can improve to win those, who do not seem interested, in your side.
Lastly, even while you are still chatting, do you know that you can already start qualifying customers as leads? Try learning about techniques about lead scoring methods as they can help sharpen how effective your lead qualification process can be.
How can B2B Lead Generation Companies Use Data to Improve Customer Data?
When it comes to marketing strategies, targeting customers, making the right decisions, and predicting outcomes, it is data that all businessmen rely on. The great thing about using data to drive your business is inevitable improvements on your top to bottom sales funnel, and of course, lead generation is included.
According to LinkedIn, a B2B lead generation report showed that for 68% of B2B organizations, funneling in quality leads is of utmost importance. Moreover, for 59% of marketers, it is among their top challenges.
It has also been found out in lead generation, lacking data served as the second and third largest obstacles; hence, employing data for research in order to correctly identify your audience, reach your market, and generate qualified leads is obviously important for the best lead generation companies. However, the question is how then can you ensure that the data you are collecting is of high quality? And how can you determine if you are maximizing it to the fullest?
CRM Data Usage
Keep in mind that while it is important to get a lot of leads, the quantity would still be of no use if you or your sales team fail to know the relevancy of these leads. You may be able to funnel over a hundred in a daily but if a few of them convert to sales, it is still to no avail because basically, the goal of a lead generation driven by data is to boost the number of leads that definitely convert.
To generate better quality leads, using better top-of-the-funnel data is the best method. Now, for your business to successfully collect behavioral data for the purpose of creating a precise and error-free scoring system, use an automated, smart, and AI-based CRM system that is capable of keeping tabs on your customers’ past movements and interactions. The main goal for this is being able to recognize patterns that point to qualified leads so that efforts for conversion from your end would be more strategic.
For your lead generation strategies to be effective data-driven, you need to make sure that you have accurate data; hence, its quality is absolutely vital.
With this quest, an artificial intelligence (AI) based system is very useful because it is capable of handling a big volume of data, authenticating them for accuracy, and then dividing them into manageable chunks for easy identification of areas or audience segments that your team can target and nurture.
Moreover, customer datasets that are frequently updated are very helpful. Conducting a comprehensive analysis of your audience upfront is good as it tells you what leadership characteristics you are looking out for. This can be done with internal datasets and research, or employing a tool for audience segmentation and selection for analyzing, categorizing, and narrowing down your target audience.
When AI works in combination with predictive technology, your business is provided a complete viewpoint on leads, focusing on those with the highest probability to purchase from you. Basically, AI systems “learn” from the past and foresee audience behavior; thereby engaging pertinent audiences and inducing them to act so that they are now in your sales funnel.
The essence of data-driven marketing is personalization, which is a method that uses emotion and empathy to engage your audience. It has been proven to be very efficient to lead generation and nurturing due to its deep-seated effect on consumers. As the saying goes, “It’s not about the product you sell, it’s about the stories you tell.”
If you are aiming to get new leads using personalization, you must have a thorough understanding of the typical motivations of your core audience. For example, what are the factors that would make them convert? Is it the price? The features that are most attractive? Or the benefits that would make his or her life easier with such a purchase?
Keep in mind though not all viewers will indeed purchase from you because it also depends on how they came to visit your website. If viewer A came upon your site through an organic search, his chances of purchasing are slimmer than that of viewer B who clicked on your paid ad or was referred by a client.
So for a personalized lead generation strategy to be effective, the best method to use is to make a buyer journey map based on past data. Do an analysis of the content of your website and check which pages are driving traffic.
Knowing this will pave the way for your understanding of which particular strategies to use so that you can get different sources of customers on to the next stage. You can make an automated campaign, based on triggers, that can nurture leads through personalized content that is based on their browsing behavior and past interactions.
For the best lead generation companies, going for the data-driven lead generation approach is the best route to go for companies to stay competitive. Keep in mind though that for this method to be truly successful, gathering data is not enough. You need to go deeper and learn how to apply it.
So to sum everything up, the takeaway from this article is that to ensure no opportunity loss, make sure that the system your team is employing to gather, analyze and nurture leads is based on accurate and updated information. Here is a three-step guide to achieving this:
- Comprehending your audience and being aware of what can trigger them to make a purchase.
- Trying out different technological tools that can aid you in having a wider reach of your audience and targeting valid prospects.
- Applying the personalized messaging method by sending content that is relatable to the situation of your customers.