Lead Buying or Lead Generating

By Jason Hulott | Traffic Generation

If your business needs leads to survive, then you have two main ways of driving them. You can buy leads in from lead generation companies, or you can generate leads yourself. From property, to finance, to insurance, leads can be the way you need to engage with prospects as you might not be able to offer quote and buy on line facilities.

But leads, either bought or generated, can be a real problem:

  • if you don’t know where the leads are coming from;
  • as you don’t know how they are being generated;
  • as you don’t know who else could be getting them;
  • if you don’t have the real system in place to manage them or convert them.

Buying or Generating – an overview of the advantages and disadvantages

Buying

Advantages

  • Can be quick to setup
  • Can get leads the same day
  • Can fix costs

Disadvantages

  • Can be poor quality
  • Can be hard to convert
  • You might not own the data – the lead generation company might solicit the data next year or you might not be able to cross sell products

Generating

Advantages

  • Generating unique leads
  • Not sharing them with other brokers
  • Building your business not others

Disadvantages

  • Can take a while to start seeing leads
  • Need to develop more skills in the business
  • No fixed costs initially

Buying Leads

There are a large number of lead generation companies in the UK that will sell you leads for a huge number of different products.   There are some things you need to understand, however, before you buy leads. Now I’m not suggesting lead companies are bad and evil, but I would say before you enter into buying leads you need to understand exactly what you are buying.

Questions to ask before buying a lead

How are the leads being generated?

This is a key question and if a company cannot tell you how and show you an example site with how these leads are being generated – run!

Who else is getting this lead?

Are you the only company getting the lead? You could be shocked to know that lead companies can and have a policy to sell the same lead up to 3 or 4 times, so in essence you are in competition with 3 or 4 other companies to get to the lead. This doesn’t mean it is a no go, but you need to understand you will need to get on to these leads as soon as they come into your inbox.

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Be honest with yourself – will you be able to hit them hard and fast? If not, think twice.

Can I filter leads?

You maybe have a niche of lead types or you many need a particular geographic area. Can you filter the leads so you only get what you can service? Most companies will have some kind of filtering process available. Make sure you ask – you don’t have to take everything they throw at you.

How are the leads delivered?

Understand how the lead will arrive and test to make sure they do. I have seen horror stories of companies not realizing leads were being sent so didn’t do anything with them until they got big invoice at the end of the month from the lead generation company. Test, test and test again.

Companies that sell leads

Listed below are lead generation companies we have worked with on behalf of clients. Please do you own due diligence as things change and there are plenty of stories – good or bad on – lead generation companies. Hence this article. Check forums, Google them and if there is something you don’t like, move onto the next one.

Quotezone – http://www.seopa.com/join/buy-sell-leads.html

Landlord Today – https://www.landlordtoday.co.uk/advertise-with-us

Mortgage Angels – http://www.mortgageangels.co.uk/advisers

VouchedFor – https://www.vouchedfor.co.uk

Efinity Leads – http://www.e-finityleads.co.uk

SO Leads – http://www.simplyonlineleads.com

Call Credit – http://www.callcredit.co.uk/products-and-services/consumer-marketing-data/online-lead-generation

Generating your own leads

Make sure your site is ready for leads.

The first thing is to take along hard look at your current website. Is it fit for purpose – does it already generate leads? If it doesn’t, then it might need changing or amending to be more lead focused.

The biggest issue we see is that websites tend to start out as nothing more than brochureware, so it is online pamphlet of your business, when you need to it to do much more and capture leads and enquiries and then follow up with them.

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Your website can do a lot of the heavy lifting for you if it is set up correctly. We always recommend that clients looking to get into lead generation use the same basic formula to build their lead gen website

WordPress + Gravity Forms = Lead Gen Machine

This can be any type of lead generation site. WordPress is a fantastic tool to build and manage a website and using Gravity Forms will allow you to create forms and then allow you to manage them as you need to.

Once you have your new website, you can look at the various options for driving traffic and, ultimately, leads.

Range of traffic options

Here are a few of the main options you can use to drive traffic to a website.

  • SEO
  • PPC Marketing
  • Social Media
  • Affiliate Programmes
  • Email Marketing
  • Content Discovery
  • Referral Programmes

I would suggest a few things  

  • Test one or two options before adding any more
  • Don’t simply rely on one source of traffic – it will not last forever so divest yourself of more than one source
  • Make sure you have tracking in place to show you what is working and what isn’t – this can simply be Google Analytics

Here are some further reading links to help you generate lead traffic

Affiliate Programmes

https://www.speedieconsulting.co.uk/building-your-own-lead-generation-affiliate-programme-using-wordpress/

http://www.insurance-marketing.co.uk/marketing/using-gravity-forms-to-build-your-lead-generation-engine/

Email Marketing

https://www.speedieconsulting.co.uk/email-marketing-for-insurance-companies/

http://www.insurance-marketing.co.uk/marketing/educating-site-visitors-multi-part-email-courses/

Pay Per Click

https://www.speedieconsulting.co.uk/pay-per-click-there-is-more-to-ppc-than-google-adwords/

http://www.insurance-marketing.co.uk/marketing/ppc-optimisation-tips/

http://www.insurance-marketing.co.uk/articles/using-google-adwords-to-help-you-at-renewal-time/

SEO

http://www.insurance-marketing.co.uk/marketing/link-building-is-still-a-key-ranking-signal/ 

General Marketing

http://www.insurance-marketing.co.uk/marketing/the-7-myths-of-online-marketing-with-facebook-and-google/

https://www.speedieconsulting.co.uk/why-your-insurance-business-could-benefit-from-more-than-one-website/

In Summary

Lead generation can be a great addition to your marketing arsenal and a viable way to drive your business forward. I hope this article gives you some food for thought before engaging with any lead buying company so you can go in 100% knowing what you are paying for. If you want some help building your own lead generation efforts please feel free to get in touch.

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About the Author

Jason Hulott is Business Development Director at Digital Marketing Specialists, Speedie Consultants. He is Google Partner certified. His role is to identify and implement traffic generating and revenue increasing ideas for our client base.