For a business organisation to have high performing marketing and sales, it needs to have a functioning B2B lead generation strategy in place for the entire funnel to run smoothly. If your business falls under one of those that is having trouble maintaining SaaS leads consistently, reassessing and optimising your approach may be worth exploring. Sometimes, signing on an external vendor such as a lead generation company, to provide additional support and share key insights is a smart way forward.
Developing leads can be a time consuming process, and if you are in the process of outsourcing this task to an agency or firm, here are a few things to consider before finalising a company and a pricing plan that is appropriate for your business goals.
Explore and Identify your Lead Generation Issues
There is a wide range of potential contacts you may connect with via B2B lead generation services, from those who are simply looking to know more about the product or service, to leads that have an established understanding of the company and support its offerings actively. In this case, each type of lead is in a different stage of the purchasing cycle, where a certain percentage is actually falling under leads, while others are merely names in a contact list.
When you shortlist a lead provider, it’s essential that you understand specific ways in which they will be beneficial to your company. Doing an objective survey of your marketing capacity, and its ability to grow leads is a smart way to gauge the effectiveness of existing resources and how exactly a specialist might be of most use. For instance, if you already have a sound email marketing strategy and the platform is showing strong numbers, there’s no point hiring services that provide expertise on the same. Instead, if conversion rates are down because of misdirected content and unclear communication, this is an area that will benefit from a lead gen company’s focus.
Reality Check on ROI Expectations
Calculating the ROI to buy leads is not that difficult, but a business organisation should update the strategy depending on the kind of leads pursued. Many focus on the number of leads even if they are low-cost, because these show a significant increase in less time. However, the quality of the leads suffer because most are not at the stage where they are willing to buy a product or service from your business, so the returns will take far longer. This is usually due to poor data sources provided by third party companies. It is important to treat time as a valuable commodity, and review how much investment will be needed once the leads are purchased.
Source: Devon Hennig
Shortlist the Well-Known Organisations
In today’s world, there is an overwhelming list of options when it comes to companies or firms that are offering leads to B2B companies. However, an experienced company versus a newcomer will have a noticeable difference in the type of leads they sell, and how sustainable they are. Explore the reputation of shortlisted organisations by browsing their social media platforms, testimonials or feedback from previous clients on their website, and independent reviews published online on different mediums.
Is the type of content on their website consistent and expressive? What kind of networks do they interact with? Do they offer fair and flexible budget plans? Are their customers loyal? These are markers for a long-term business and more exposure to the market conditions means better results. A prospective lead generation partner should be fully capable on delivering on their promises and increase your lead quota, instead of being all talk.
Assess the Quality of Data
It’s not enough to implement a new lead generation software and stop there. Your team needs to rigorously analyse whether the leads received are actually useful for your specific requirements. Most businesses get excited when they have a huge hike in the number of new leads, but if they aren’t matching your criteria, then your situation is the same as before. Lead data must be utilised in a strategic manner, and then only will you see the results.
What distinguishes a great lead from others? Take a look at the supplier’s existing portfolio and the kind of protocols they execute to ensure that lead quality is screened before reaching their clients. More established agencies such as HubSpot, provide a guarantee of the minimum number of leads to expect, based on priorities discussed. If the quality of your leads are more improved, there will be visible changes on the marketing and sales front. Don’t get fooled by lead aggregator companies that are aiming to make a quick buck, through false and misleading advertising that encourage consumers to share a lead. At the end of the day, choose sales lead data that is perfectly tailored to potential clients and builds a personal connection with them.
Conversion Rates of Clients
Once you invest in a lead generation agency or firm, you should be getting returns that are linked to your business plans. The offered services must be able to fulfil multiple marketing goals and report back higher customer satisfaction rates. Take a realistic approach to measuring marketing and sales efforts, both from the business’ side and the lead generation agency concerned. Keep being proactive about doing the things that are working well, and focus less on the things that aren’t helping much.
Look out for suppliers who simply care about lead generation numbers without monitoring the long-term impact on customers’ needs. Ensure you’ve got the best possible deal with software applications by checking the free trial versions, and double checking the conversion rates on different channels.
Review the Guarantees or Terms of Service
Before you seal the deal with a particular company, have a frank discussion on the kind of expectations you have in mind and what their services can realistically provide support for. It’s always great to hear from confident and capable professionals who give a results guarantee, but vague statements and an unclear plan of action are red flags for you to discontinue negotiations.
Create a frequent communication channel that specifies the format, and establish who will be the point of contact on behalf of your team. Being open to feedback is vital for the company to be successful with your project, so be open in order to avoid any unnecessary misunderstanding. If things are going well, feel free to explore the possibility of longer collaborations instead of the just the current assignment.
For many, the lead generation industry remains as unpredictable as ever, but there are many types of fish in the sea. To figure out one that is best suited to your requirements, your marketing and sales team must do the necessary research and single out those organisations that are going the extra mile, versus unverified agencies that are profiting from random contact lists.
Exceptional lead gen firms are pros at helping their clients master the market dynamics and create winning talking points that add to the brand. At the early stage, a business should take a closer look at the full scope of such an organisation and what exactly they offer to expand in a new market, or streamline existing operations for better profitability.