Finding new business leads is a hard task if you don't know how to do it. There are so many methods to getting access to apparently targeted business leads, yet upon my experience very prove to actual do what they promise, deliver me more business leads.
So what should you look for when you buy or generate your own business leads?
I have the following shortlist:
1 - A Lead is not a lead until it's raised its hand and requested information.
Too often companies that sell these targeted leads are merely just selling you names, emails etc that they have got off a disc from one of the big directory companies such as 192.com. They have not been marketed to about what you have to sell and have not expressed an interest in buying that product. Unfortunately there are too many companies that sell this type of data that turns out not to even raise a sale if you buy it.
2 - The business lead should have already bought something related to what you are selling.
This point is crucial. If your lead has already bought a related product or service then it is highly likely that they will be happy to hear about and possibly buy your product. There are very few companies that actually sell this data. The best way to get access to this type of data is to list a number of related businesses to your product and then approach then to see if they would let you contact their database and via versa. By doing this you are achieving a couple of very valuable things. Firstly you are adding value to your business be accessing for little or no cost a whole group of new business leads and secondly you are forming a good relationship with another business that you can later promote your products together in bundles or specials.
I use this method time and time again to gain access to more business leads and it is highly profitable and always delivers a consistent stream of more business leads.
3 - Always ensure that the business lead is fresh
Too often data sold is months or years old. If someone signed up for an offer on a home improvement website 12 months ago it is likely that they have now completed all the work they wish to do, so if you buy the lead and want to sell your home improvement loans then it is unlikely you will get any new leads.
Timing is crucial in converting prospects to leads and leads to sale. The fresher the data the greater the chance that it will convert into a business lead. Always check the sell by date of a list as to when it was last sold to or communicated with, this will also help you by not wasting money on a dead list.
4 - Cheap business leads are just that cheap!
Be warned if it's to good to be true, then it's likely it is. If you get approached to buy leads for $1 a time that are apparently highly targeted and ready to buy, walk away. In my experience the minimum cost of a quality lead starts at $10+. Anything less that this means that the data is poor and probably has been scrapped from someone or somewhere and will not deliver you more business leads.
Always ask for references before buying any data. Any reputable company will be able to put you in touch with satisfied customers of theirs to confirm how good the data is. If they can't then it is likely the data is poor and won't produce you any more leads.
5 - Ask how they develop the business leads
Ask the company what methods they use to generate the leads they sell to you. Do they use websites, telemarketing, advertising, competitions etc? By knowing how they generate the data will help you get a better idea of how to approach the business lead to get the best possible result. If for example they have been generated online, then contacting them via email would be best as they are used to that medium.
All in all if you are looking to generate more business leads then you need to use common sense and stick by the points I outlined in this article. If you do then your lead generation will be successful and you will get more business leads into your business. So don't take any chances with the data or leads you are buying. Ask the right questions to get the answers you want, if the lead company can't deliver or answer what you want then approach another one as there are thousands of business lead companies out there.