Like most business owners, it is always a struggle to obtain more leads.  We turn to SEO, SEM, social media, and full-service marketing experts and employees to bring more customers through the door or have them pick up the phone and call us.  Sometimes our efforts pay off with a steady flow of inquiries, but we always have more time to connect with potential clients and attempt to close them.  This is where paid leads come in, which is essentially a means of obtaining unlimited leads at a price.  Though this practice has been around for decades, this method of lead acquisition still has relevance if you meet the criteria for handling them and the third party meets the criteria for legitimately (and ethically) delivering them.  In this blog, we will explore how to make the most out of paid leads if you find a source you can count on.

Finding a paid lead source may require some typical Google searches, or you can start with one that has already reached out to you in the past.  Essentially, paid leads are going to work for you if they meet the following requirements:

  • They are sourced specifically for your region and industry
  • The third party delivers them promptly after the initial prospect has contact them (hopefully within 12-18 hours).  Basically, you don’t want them to be ‘cold’ by the time they get to you because that means they have already shopped around for a while.
  • These leads aren’t being shared with tons of other people at the same time as you.  We’ve seen that perhaps 2-3 other people is OK, but you want to be able to dedicate yourself to following up on the paid leads you get FAST.
  • You want to know that the leads are warmed up to the point where they are definitely in a buying phase.  We have talked to some paid leads companies that have a swarm of telemarketers cold calling businesses, simply asking ‘would you like to learn more about x,y,z?’ and considering it a lead for sale.  There is nothing here to indicate that they are interested in purchasing a product or service whatsoever. Most times the lead generators come from these potential clients filling out a contact form or calling the lead company first, where then they turn it over to you to close.
  • They aren’t outrageously expensive, and they don’t expect you to follow up with 10 of them a day.  They are reasonable about giving you a steady flowing of maybe 0-3 a day, sometimes more.

Like we mentioned in our previous blog “Do Directories Work…”  you want to negotiate paid leads the same way:

  • Ask to try out a couple leads for free.  If they are solid, you’ll enter into a short-term contract and/or buy a package of leads.  About half of the time they will let you try 1-2, sometimes they won’t at all.  If they don’t let you at all, it isn’t necessarily a deal-breaker.
  • Ask all of the above questions (how fast do I get them, how many people do I share them with, how do you guys get the leads)
  • Negotiate pricing per lead always, always…always.  You can always get them to go lower.

If you have any more questions about the paid lead buying process, or need someone experienced in this to negotiate on your behalf, please contact the marketing experts at Market My Market today!