Are Purchased Lead Lists for Your Sales Team Worth the Price?

Samir Sampat
|
2023-04-10

Leads are the starting point of sales, but not all of them make it through to the end. Therefore, it stands to reason that the more leads you have (and the better they are), the more likely you will be able to convert sales and create customers. There are several different ways to go about getting leads, including the option to buy lead lists that have already been collected and cultivated, saving your team the work. 

Lead lists are rated as one of the most cost-effective ways to generate leads. After all, while you’re paying for the list, you’re not paying for the time and effort the team would need to put in to build their own. Some experts say they’re the way to go. Others say you should avoid them if you can. So, are they really worth the cost? That depends, mostly on where you get them and how you use them. 

What are lead lists?

A lead list is a list of potential customers that your company wants to acquire. If it is a B2C list, it will have consumer names, contact information, and other details that are relevant. If it’s a B2B list, you’ll typically find the company name, decision makers, and their contact details. These pre-built lists often get a bad reputation. They’re deemed “inaccurate” or low-quality, and may not be current, clean, or fully populated in some cases. 

With that in mind, however, there can be value to purchasing lead lists in certain situations. 

When buying lead lists makes sense 

So, despite the fact that these lists often get a bad reputation, they do have their place. Specifically, if you’re expanding a small business or building a high-growth startup and you need quick access to leads without the work, this could be the way to go. You just need to be careful about how you do it. 

For starters, make sure that you choose reputable providers that will do more than just sell you a giant list and disappear. Some list providers can also consult, which will give you the chance to discuss your target audience and needs before they generate the list of leads that’s best for you. 

Therefore, it helps if you know who your target audience is in the first place. Some lists out there are filled with a bunch of generic leads that can be sold to just about anyone. Those are a huge waste of money most of the time because you’re sifting through so much to get so little. By having a lead vendor that you can work with, you’ll be able to let them know what your customer profile is so that they can home in on the lead list that’s best for your specific needs. 

Invest in quality, not quantity

The biggest reason that people struggle (or fail entirely) with lead lists is because they want to get the most bang for their buck. This isn’t a time when that should be your goal. In fact, you should be looking to invest in high-quality leads, even if you get fewer of them for the money that you spend. Quality leads mean that you’re investing your money wisely and not wasting it. They also mean that you’re more likely to find viable customers. 

Ranking leads and coming up with a customer profile ahead of time will help you choose better lead lists. Opting for curated lists and consultative providers is also going to ensure that quality is the focus. 

Check the laws 

One important thing to keep in mind with lead lists is that you need to understand the legal issues surrounding data and data sharing. For example, the U.S. has the CAN-SPAM act and Europe has its GDPR:

  • The U.S. CAN-SPAM Act was passed to address issues with unwanted email messages and is monitored and regulated by the FTC (Federal Trade Commission). It includes several requirements, such as not using misleading information, making sure recipients have the choice to opt-out, etc. 
  • The GDPR, or General Data Protection Regulation, is a law passed in Europe that outlines how companies and organizations can use digital personal information, much in the same way that the U.S. law does. 

Check that you’re buying from a company that follows the rules for the location where the list will be used, and make sure that you know the rules about buying leads where you do business. 

If you don’t follow the rules, even by sheer accident, you can get in a lot of trouble. Not only can it get you in legal hot water, but you could also tarnish your business reputation. That’s why you have to be careful about using these lists, as well as any other lead generation efforts. 

Or, you could build your own lists 

Some companies immediately jump to buying leads because the idea of building their own list seems so daunting. However, it’s actually a lot less intimidating than you think once you get started. It can also be more cost-effective, and when you have a solid strategy, it can be easy to teach to all of your sales reps and marketers and outsourced sales outreach team. 

The Internet makes it easy to generate your own lead lists without doing more than getting people’s interest. You can have them sign up for a newsletter, provide an email address in exchange for a discount, or otherwise gather their contact information and have it automatically added to your CRM and other software. 

Some companies find that one option works better for them. Others choose to do a little of both. Whatever you decide, make sure that it’s all part of a lead generation strategy that’s focused on getting results. Take advantage of automated tools and inbound leads to build lists in as many ways as you can. This will help reduce the workload on your team and get more leads coming in with less effort. 

When the leads start coming through, are you ready?

Once you get things rolling, you’re going to need to be ready to manage that influx of leads that come your way. Fortunately, you don’t have to do it alone. With the virtual receptionists at Smith.ai, you’ll have a 24/7 answering service to capture every call and assist with things like lead intake and appointment scheduling

We can even provide support and insight for your outreach campaigns to help generate those leads in the first place. To learn more, schedule a consultation or reach out to hello@smith.ai

Tags:
Lead Screening
Sales Development
Samir Sampat

Samir Sampat is a Marketing and Events Associate with Smith.ai. He has experience working with businesses of all sizes focusing on marketing, communications, and business development.

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