We've talked before about how competitive leads are good for your business
-- but it's a hard point for many lead buyers to accept. Of course lead buyers would prefer to be the only business matched to a particular lead -- but the economics of lead gen don't work that way.
Michael Ferree over at LeadCritic has been on both sides of the lead gen equation, buying and selling leads, and he weighed in this week with a good summary of the situation in a post titled Buyers Must Understand the Whole Picture
Given the cost of generating quality leads, he points out, buyers have to expect lead sellers to maximize their revenue per lead, and creative ways of selling the same lead to multiple businesses are to be expected. We completely agree, and wish more lead buyers would look at our industry this way.
Couple of points to make on this. First, the idea of providing leads to multiple buyers is fine as long as it is completely transparent. At BuyerZone, for example, we let our clients know how many other companies a lead could be matched to -- and it varies according to the industry. That helps the lead buyer know what they're up against and helps them value the lead accordingly. If a lead source is not disclosing
their reselling practices, then you've got a legitimate complaint.
As Ferree points out, if you're thinking of the customer first, multiple options are a good
... when it comes to a lead generation company encouraging their user to
compare multiple options (which I frankly think is good for the consumer
- not forcing them, but providing more options) think twice and don't
Second, this situation only occurs on high-value leads. Companies who
deal in list scraping, email harvesting, or other shady practices that
they deceptively call "lead gen" have such low costs that they may sell
you "exclusive" leads -- but if you've tried these sources, you know
it's a waste of money, even if you are the only one who gets a
Again, Ferree's summary takes the words right out of my mouth:
Simply look at whether your Cost per Sale is in
line with your goals and base your marketing buys only off that metric.
What do you think - are lead buyers right to worry about their leads being resold?